All About Japan

Enjoy Nighttime Sakura Petals in an Onsen

| Onsen , Cherry Blossoms

Now that Tokyo is officially in the midst of this year’s long-awaited cherry blossom season, people everywhere are excitedly making plans for hanami flower-viewing get-togethers. Those looking for a unique nighttime alternative to the traditional hanami park picnic are in for an extra special treat this year, following the opening of a special electric sakura event at one of the city’s most unlikely venues: the Oedo Onsen Monogatari hot spring complex in Tokyo’s Odaiba district.

While nighttime sakura, or yozakura, are known to be especially beautiful as they’re illuminated by lights to create a magical atmosphere at this time of year, the chance to combine the beauty of nighttime flowers with traditional hot spring bathing is the stuff of dreams, especially in a crowded metropolis like Tokyo. Oedo Onsen Monogatari now aims to bring this magical experience to life with the use of projection mapping, designed by creative company Naked, one of the leaders in the field in Japan.

As well as being able to enjoy flurries of cherry blossoms on traditional bridges, visitors will also be able to see the blossoms forming in water while soaking their feet in the warm foot baths. The images will be accompanied by music, and there’s also an interactive element to the display, where social media users who tweet a message with the hashtag #ツイート流し (#tweetnagashi) will be able to see their message float along the surface of the water.

Visitors to the onsen are provided with free yukata (lightweight kimono) to wear while enjoying the many hot springs, foot baths, and food stalls on the premises, which only enhances the romantic, nostalgic atmosphere of the beautiful event. Whether you’re visiting alone, or with friends, family or a loved one, this looks set to be a very special way to remember the beauty of sakura in Tokyo.

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