Japan is more well known for its Cherry Blossom Festivals rather than the Plum Festivals. However, that is not to say that the Japanese Plum, or Ume, does not hold an important place in Japanese culture. Introduced from China, the Ume is the harbinger of spring. Plum trees flower in February and March and as such, Plum Festivals (Ume Matsuri) are held during these months.
Different places have their own festivals. Most of the time, though, these celebrations are held in public parks, shrines, and temples. Unlike cherry blossoms, plum blossoms emanate quite a strong fragrance. Imagine being surrounded by plum trees with flowers ranging from white to dark pink and inhaling the aroma that permeates the atmosphere. It’s enough to make one want to be there for a Plum Festival, isn’t it?
If you’re looking to go to one, some of the famous “plum spots” are: Kairakuen (Ibaraki Prefecture), Hanegi Park (Tokyo), and Yushima Tenjin Shrine (Tokyo).
[tags]Festivals, Plum festival, ume, spring[/tags]