It's that time of year again - Sakura in Okinawa! Sakura (cherry blossoms) blooms in Okinawa first before the rest of Japan, usually around end of January / beginning of February. Read all about the meaning of Sakura in Japan in my blog from last year here.
We started our Saturday Sakura viewing in north Okinawa at Mount Yaedake. From the foot of the winding road to the top, more than 7,000 Ryukyu Kanhi Zakura or Hikan Zakura ("Taiwan Cherry"), the Okinawan cherry variety originating in Taiwan and southern China, colors the mountain bright pink. We were a little early in the season but still got to see a decent amount of cherry blossoms :)
Finally, the long awaited day had arrived.... Mel came to visit us!! Our plan of action: Meet in Tokyo -> hang out in Okinawa -> end the trip in Hong Kong #Ithinkthatqualifiesasagoodasiatrip #melladora (#doratheexplorer) #worldtraveler
Nate and I flew to meet Mel #hellamel in Tokyo so we could explore this crazy, amazing city together. Must have been a popular time to visit since it took Mel almost 2 hours to get through customs! #isshehereyet?? As soon as we were able to give each other quick hugs and scream with excitement - we raced to catch the Narita Express to take us from the airport to the neighborhood of Shinjuku. #reunitedanditfeelssogood The hour train ride gave Mel and I time to catch up on all the latest gossip between her love life, work, school, and our adventures over in Asia. #girltalk
Cherry Blossoms (or sakura 桜) is a big deal in Japan so naturally I was excited to see this while living here. I decided to head up to the north part of Okinawa, to Nakijin Castle (castle in Japanese is jo) to view these pretty pink blossoms. Nakijin Castle (今帰仁城 Nakijin Gusuku) is a Ryukyuan castle currently in ruins and was the capital of Hokuzan (one of the three principalities of the Ryukyus in the late 14th century). Today it is known for the Hikan cherries which bloom in northern Okinawa between mid-January and early February, providing the first cherry blossoms each year in Japan.
Megan Bond - AUTHOR
Just a girl raised in California and loved exploring Southeast Asia with my husband! We're back in the States but still exploring the world as much as we can!