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Where to See the Best Cherry Blossoms in the USA

Last Updated on 16th January 2023 by Sophie Nadeau

When it comes to the arrival of spring, there is perhaps no more beautiful sight than seeing the fluffy pink cherry blossoms dotted that herald the beginning of the season. So from East to West and North to South, here’s your guide to the best places to see cherry blossoms in the USA.

dc cherry blossoms

Athens, Ohio

One of the more unexpected places to enjoy the blooms in the US is in Athens, Ohio, and more specifically on the Ohio University Campus. The iconic cherry blossom trees were planted in 1979.

Presented as a gift from Chubu University, located in Kasugai Japan, the blossom trees are located alongside the Hocking River and were presented on the occasion of the Ohio’s 175th anniversary. The trees tend to bloom during the first week of April.

athens ohio cherry blossom

Boston, Massachusetts

Located in the East of the USA, Boston boasts a number of places to see beautiful cherry blossoms bloom from the end of March through to early April. The best place to see blossoms in the US city is along Boston’s Charles River Esplanade Park.

Other locations where visitors can enjoy the pretty pink hues include Boston Common, Arnold Arboretum, and at Brookline High School. Indeed, Brookline High School even hosts an annual Cherry Blossom Festival, with various events celebrating spring and the blossoms themselves.

boston cherry blossom

Brooklyn, New York

For fans of cherry blossoms, there’s no shortage of places where visitors can enjoy beautiful blossoms in New York. The neighbourhood of Brooklyn has several spots to see the cherry trees, including outside the Brooklyn Museum and, of course, in Brooklyn Botanic Gardens.

Boasting 26 types of flowering cherry trees, the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens is so well-known for its beautiful blooms that you can even track the current status of the blooms on the ‘cherry watch’ page of the BBG’s website.

Brooklyn Botanic Garden

Portland, Oregon

When it comes to seeing the Sakura in Portland, Oregon, there is no shortage of options. Though the exact timing of the blossoms blooming varies year on year, the trees tend to flower from the middle of March through to the beginning of April.

If you need to book your visit in advance, then one of the safest bets to be able to see at least some trees would be to book your trip for the last week of March. Highlights of seeing blossoms in Portland include the trees in Tom McCall Waterfront Park (near the steel bridge) and in the Portland Japanese Garden.

If you arrive later in the season and are unable to see the earlier blooming trees, then it’s worth noting that there are 60 late-blooming Shirofugen Cherry Blossoms located at the Hoyt Arboretum.

portland blossom

Salem, Oregon

There is a reason that the town of Salem in Oregon got its nickname ‘the garden capital of Oregon,’ and that of course is thanks to all of the beautiful greenery dotted across the city. As well as being surrounded by vineyards and green pastures, the city is located just an hour from the ocean.

Come springtime, Salem is one of the best places to see cherry blossoms in the USA. Key highlights of sakura season in the city include the 150+ cherry trees in the Capitol Mall, as well as annual Cherry Blossom Days in Salem, which are held on Saturdays in March.

salem blossom

San Francisco

One of the top places to see sakura in California is San Francisco, where the arrival of spring also signals the arrival of beautiful blooms all over the city. San Francisco even hosts an annual Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival.

Some of the best places to spy blossoms in the city include in the Japanese Tea Garden, which itself is located within the Golden State Park, in the San Francisco Botanical Gardens, and in Japantown.

san francisco blossom

Seattle, Washington

For those in search of some particularly beautiful sakura in the USA, Seattle is the place to visit. The top places to see cherry blossoms in Seattle include on the Quad of the University of Washington, at Seward Park, and at Point Defiance Park.

In fact, the blossoming of the sakura is such an event in the city that there is an annual Seattle Cherry Blossom & Japanese Cultural Festival, which takes place over the course of a couple of days in the first half of April each year.

seattle cherry blossoms

Washington DC

Of course, the crème de la crème when it comes to enjoying cherry blossoms in the US is in Washington DC and so if you’re thinking of planning a trip specifically to see the sakura then DC should be a no brainer.

Each year, thousands of visitors flock to the city in order to enjoy the cherry blossoms, which are namely located around the Tidal Basin. Today, there are around 3,800 cherry blossom trees, with the Yoshino and Kwanzan being the most common types you’ll see.

Up to 70% of the trees are Yoshino cherry blossoms and these are typically among the earliest trees to bloom. For more inspiration, be sure to check out our DC cherry blossom guide.

cherry blossoms in washington dc

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