For most people who enjoy cherry blossoms, the time to look forward to is late March and April. With the mild temperatures this winter, the main sakura season is expected to come a bit earlier than usual, but it will still be well past Valentine's Day.

Normally in Japan, Valentine's Day comes first, and cherry blossoms second. But what if you could enjoy both Valentine's Day and cherry blossoms at the same time?

Kawazu sakura illumination

If your visit to Japan coincides with Valentine's Day, make it even more special with an evening of cherry blossom viewing at Tokyo's Happo-En, where the early-blooming Kawazu variety of sakura trees are beautifully illuminated.

Happo-en, which used to be the residence of the 17th-century samurai Tadataka Okubo, is home to centuries-old bonsai trees, a koi pond, and cherry trees. It's a popular spot for weddings and banquets, and you can also participate in traditional tea ceremonies inside the Edo-period building which also house restaurants and banquet halls.

From February 8th, the over 80 Kawazu sakura trees will be artfully illuminated, creating a splendid sight which will surely liven your spirits. Of course, if you have a special someone to share the evening with, it will be a romantic evening to remember.

Original Happo-en sakura chocolates

On January 18th, Happo-en's original brand kiki 季季 began offering sakura-flavored chocolates. White bonbon chocolates made with sakura petals from Odawara in Kanagawa Prefecture, they have an elegant taste with a subtle fragrance of sakura inside. They make the perfect Valentine's Day gift.

Other chocolates are also available. To learn more, see their website here.


  • Happo-en Garden
  • Address: 1-1-1 Shirokanedai, Minato 108-8631, Tokyo Prefecture
  • Opening Hours: 10:00-22:00
  • Website

  • By - Ben K.