From June to July, we are now in the height of the hydrangea season in Japan.
Just as cherry blossoms symbolize spring, hydrangeas, known as ‘ajisai’ in Japanese, are the icons of our early summer, especially during the rainy season.
If you’re planning to visit Japan during the hydrangea season, you’re in for a delightful experience.
From leisurely strolls in the hydrangea gardens, sipping on hydrangea-themed refreshments, to taking part in local hydrangea festivals, there are many ways to enjoy these beautiful blooms.
One thing that’s at the core of our love for hydrangeas is ‘mono no aware,’ the awareness and appreciation of the fleeting nature of things.
This comes alive in the hydrangea season, as we find beauty in their transient bloom, cherishing each moment.
The blue hydrangeas that have lived in Japan since ancient times have been given the color name “Ajisai-iro” (Hydrangeas color).
We can see that hydrangeas have long been familiar to the Japanese spirit and life.
Ajisai-iro (slightly dull cerulean blue)
The hydrangeas you’ll see in Japan might surprise you with their variety.
We’ve got everything from deep blues to vibrant pinks and even multicolored flowers – each type of hydrangea has its own unique charm.
Famous Hydrangea Spots
One of the highlights of the hydrangea season is, of course, visiting spots where these flowers bloom in abundance.
There are many places for unique experiences, such as the hydrangea-adorned temples of Kamakura and the Hakone Tozan train (known as the “hydrangea train” in this season) ride through mountains of blooming hydrangeas.
Kamakura: The Hydrangea Temple Route
Kamakura, an old capital city not far from Tokyo, is particularly famous for its hydrangea temples.
Here, you can enjoy a leisurely walk among historic temples, each decorated with these lovely flowers, creating an experience that blends history with natural beauty.
Meigetsu-in: The Temple of Hydrangeas
One of my personal favorite spots in Kamakura is Meigetsu-in.
Known as the ‘Temple of Hydrangeas,’ it’s a place where the delicate beauty of hydrangeas truly shines.
Each bloom is like a little masterpiece, and together, they create an ocean of breathtaking colors.
Choju-ji: The Quiet Hydrangea Temple
Choju-ji, another temple in Kamakura, offers a different but equally enchanting experience.
Here, in the quiet, serene atmosphere of the temple, surrounded by the lush greenery and the gentle hues of hydrangeas, you feel a sense of calm and peace.
In this article “Blooms, Temples, and Tranquility: Kamakura’s Hydrangea Experience”, we introduce recommended spots to visit when touring the popular tourist destination of Kamakura.
The Charm of Hydrangeas
For visitors to Japan, the hydrangea season offers a sensory feast. From the vibrant sights, delicate fragrance, and even the cool touch of the rainy season, all make the hydrangea viewing experience enchanting.
We hope we’ve managed to convey a bit of our love and admiration for these humble yet magnificent flowers.
Perhaps, during your visit, you’ll find your own meaning and joy in the hydrangea season.
And even if you can’t make it this year, remember, the hydrangeas will be here, waiting to greet you with their vibrant blooms every year!
Enjoying hydrangeas isn’t just a feast for the eyes – treat your taste buds too with delicious seasonal Japanese sweets inspired by these blooms!
Hi! I’m an enthusiastic Kimono consultant, the manager of Project Japan. Beyond work, I love kimonos, relaxing in onsens, exploring music, and traveling. When it comes to food, I have a soft spot for traditional Japanese cuisine and enjoy Japanese sake, wine, whiskey, and coffee.
As a web and video producer, I keep up with the latest in tech.