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Everyone loves a good cherry blossom, right? That’s certainly true in Vancouver for the Vancouver cherry blossom festival. When the trees start to turn pink, you finally get a glimpse of the summer to come it makes you forget about all those dark winter days and endless rain. If you want to find out where to get that Instagram picture of the cherry blossom in Vancouver, then keep on reading for everything you need to know about the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival.
What is the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival?
Quite simply its one of the prettiest Vancouver festivals! The Cherry Blossom Festival in Vancouver, Canada is effectively a celebration of spring and pretty blossom. In Vancouver, there are around 40,000 cherry blossom trees so you’re bound to spot some around the city without even trying!
When is the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival and when do cherry blossoms bloom?
The Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival takes place from March until mid-April which is usually considered to be cherry blossom season. It’s basically from when the trees start to bloom until they no longer are. So if it’s a particularly harsh winter the season might be a bit later, and if it’s been mild then you can expect the cherry blossom season to be a bit earlier.
The official Cherry Blossom Festival takes places from March 30th to April 23rd which just means there are some extra events (apart from spotting cherry blossom) going on during this time.
How long do cherry blossoms last?
Cherry blossoms don’t last that long unfortunately but that’s partly what makes it so pretty. If they were around all the time we wouldn’t appreciate them as much!
Cherry blossom trees tend to be in full bloom for a week or two so you’ll need to get out there and snap them quick!
How can I find the cherry blossoms in bloom?
If you’re hoping to get out there and find beautiful Japanese cherry blossom trees in Vancouver, there are several ways to find them. Here are some of the ways I’ve found gorgeous cherry blossom trees in Vancouver the past few years.
Just go for a walk around our beautiful city and you’re bound to stumble upon some cherry blossoms.
Check the festival website
Alternatively, you can check the “Blooming Now” Vancouver map which is kept up to date by the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival. This is a great place to check if you’re taking your cherry blossom hunt to the next level.
Use social media
Head to social media for your cherry blossom watch. See where your fellow Instagrammers are posting their cherry blossom pictures from. This is probably the best way to go about finding “cherry blossom trees near me”.
Where are the best places to spot cherry blossom in Vancouver?
It depends on the year as to where the best cherry blossom is. However, there are certain areas of Vancouver where you’re more likely to be impressed by cherry blossoms than others. Here are some top picks for spotting cherry blossom in Vancouver. For my truly favourite areas I’ve added a bit more detail. Maybe I’ll see you there!
Queen Elizabeth Park
Queen Elizabeth Park is a popular spot for picnics, dates and taking photos of the cherry blossoms. It’s without a doubt one of the best places to find cherry blossom trees in Vancouver. They even have several events at Queen Elizabeth Park during the festival so you know it’s gotta be a good spot.
End of Howe by Ancora restaurant and the Yacht Club downtown
This is one of my favourite places mostly because people around here don’t seem to even realise the beauty! I saw very few people posing for photos here (especially compared to near the Lost Lagoon!).
Hamilton Street near the Vancouver Public Library
If you wander down the hill from the library to Yaletown you’ll be wowed by the cherry blossoms to your right. Especially since they’re also just in front of some super cute looking buildings!
Other beautiful spots to find the best cherry blossoms in Vancouver
- Seabreeze between Hornby and Howe
- Beach & Thurlow
- David Lam Park
- Marinaside and Davie (by the houses on the seawall)
- Burrard Skytrain Station
- Waterfront Plaza by 200 Granville
- Coal Harbour, Waterfront
- Robson Street (side streets west of Thurlow)
- Arbutus Ridge
- W 4th Avenue (Cornwall Avenue and Yew Street)
- The West End up and down Gilford Street
- VanDusen Botanical Garden: The Van Dusen Gardens are great whatever the time of year, especially during spring!
What happens during the Vancouver Cherry Blossom?
Please note: the events are cancelled in 2020, but you can still see Vancouver’s cherry blossoms by wandering around the city!
There are several different Vancouver events that take place during the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival to celebrate Spring and the blooming of these beautiful trees. For the 2018 Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival you can expect the following events.
Cherry Jam Downtown
The festival opens with the free Cherry Jam at Burrard Skytrain station from 12 pm – 1:30 pm on April 5th. The Cherry Jam features local musicians, dancers and poets reading the winners of the Haiku Invitational.
Bike The Blossoms
This free cycling event takes place on 28th April from 11 am – 1 pm and begins at Trout Lake. The bicycle route changes every year but is usually just over 10km long and you’ll spot plenty of blossom along the way!
This year you’ll also be able to get some advice on anti-bike-theft measures to make it harder to have your bicycle taken from you, and easier to get back!
Sign your waiver in advance online, otherwise, go along at 10 am to get it signed on the day. You may also print your waiver here and bring it on the day of the event: Click here
Spring Lights Illumination
Head down to Queen Elizabeth Park as the sunsets for this free Spring Lights Illumination event on 14th April as part of the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival.
Queen Elizabeth Park will be illuminated with projections and multicoloured lanterns. If you’re a keen photographer then you’ll be pleased to know that the light show has been set up to minimise obstructed views. Pack a picnic (pray for good weather), and have a great time!
The Big Picnic
Between 12 pm – 3 pm on 14th April you’ll be able to join in on a big community picnic at Queen Elizabeth Park. It’s the perfect place to enjoy the cherry blossoms as Queen Elizabeth Park is full of them!
The Cherry Blossom Festival provides a free, interconnecting Petal Mat which you and your new friends can sit upon.
If you forgot to swing by the shops on the way over, then you can grab some lunch from the Tacofino truck that’ll be on site.
There will also be extra activities taking place including; walking meditation, Kabuki face-painting, dancing, singing, huge Jenga, ultimate frisbee and even a free yoga class between 12:30 – 1:15 pm! Or, work on your artistic skills and make a cherry blossom painting during your picnic under the trees!
Will you be heading to the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival?