Chikuma City's signature event, the Apricot Festival in Mori's "Apricot Village" officially started on April 2nd. But how about the apricot blossoms? Have they showed up on time for their own party? Some of our guests that went on the 2nd came back disappointed, saying that the trees weren't in bloom yet. However, our town's Tourism Association website said as of the 5th that the blossoms were at 20% (whatever that means!).
Last evening, I went to see with my own eyes how Mori's famous apricot trees were doing. And the result?
Mixed, but worth seeing!
The majority of the trees, especially in the upper reaches of the valley, were still just in bud stage. However, several of the trees, especially ones in sunnier spots, were already in full bloom. So I would say it is definitely worth seeing now. And with today's nice weather (the high temperature is predicted to be 63F), more and more of the trees will start to bloom.
For me, the real draw for Mori's apricot festival is the quiet, pastoral setting of the valley. It has a quaint, rural feel to it that is especially enhanced this time of year with the soft pink, delicate apricot blossoms. And, of course, don't miss the apricot ice cream!
New this year is a connector bus from Togura Kamiyamada Onsen, leaving every morning at 8:50am. So if you stay the night at Kamesei, you'll have easy access to the apricot blossoms the next day.
So don't pass up this chance to see Japan's largest number of apricot trees in bloom at Mori's "Apricot Village".
Mori's Apricot Festival will run through April 16th. Updated information on the Chikuma City Tourism Assoc. website (in Japanese only).