【SPRING】See cherry blossoms, deer and temples altogether at Nara Park

When you visit Nara, please stop by Nara Park. You can enjoy the scenery of their shrines and temples, as well as the deer and cherry blossoms.
Nara Park is close to Nara station, and is easy to get to during the spring.
I’ll introduce great locations to see cherry blossoms in Nara Park!


Nara Park with its famous cherry blossoms and deer!

Nara Park

When Japanese people hear ‘Nara prefecture’, they think of deer and the Great Buddha of Todai-ji Temple. There are about 1,200 deer in Nara Park and they are designated as a Precious Natural Treasure of the State. They’ve been protected since ancient times because they are known as messengers from God. Why not visit the park during the spring to see the beautiful scenery?

The best time to see cherry blossoms in Nara Park is from the end of March to the end of April. There are about 1,700 various kinds of cherry blossom trees in full bloom. The deer together with the cherry blossoms are a great sight to see!

Play hide-and-seek with a deer at Todaiji Temple. A deer in Nara during the morning

Nara Park

  • Address:543 Shibatsuji-cho, Nara city, Nara Prefecture
  • Getting there:5-minute walk from Kintetsu Nara Station / 20-minute walk from JR Nara Station
  • Telephone number:0742-22-0375
  • WebsiteNara Park

See the beautiful view of a five-story pagoda immersed in cherry blossoms at Kohfuku-ji temple!

The pagoda at Kohfuku-ji temple during spring

Kohfuku-ji temple was built by Kagami no Okimi, the wife of FUJIWARA no Kamatari. She built Yamashina temple in 669, the predecessor of Kohfuku-ji Temple. In 710 the son of Kamatari, FUJIWARA no Fuhito, relocated the temple to its present location and named it
The view of the five-story pagoda from Sarusawa-ike Pond represents one of the most beautiful spots in Nara Prefecture. You can take beautiful pictures of the five-story pagoda and cherry blossoms from the temple grounds. I also recommend the beautiful drooping cherry tree near the three-story pagoda!

Kohfuku-ji Temple

  • Address:48 Noboriōji-cho, Nara city, Nara Prefecture
  • Getting there:6-minute walk from Kintetsu Nara Station
  • Telephone number:0742-22-7755
  • Entrance Fees:
    ・Adults and University Students 600yen
    ・Junior High and High School Students 500yen
    ・Primary School Students 200yen
  • WebsiteKohfuku-ji Temple

The first cherry tree at Himuro Shrine embodies the first day of spring!

The first cherry tree in Nara

A drooping cherry tree at Himuro Shrine is called Nara-Ichiban zakura(奈良一番桜: literally ‘The first cherry tree in Nara’) , and it is the first cherry tree to blossom in Nara. The main figure enshrined in this shrine is the mountain god of the surrounding Higashiyama area in Nara. This cherry tree is well known by local people as a mountain god’s sign to announce the advent of spring in Nara.
There are several drooping cherry trees on the shrine-grounds. The one in front of the four-legged gate is 100 years old.
The best time to see cherry blossoms is from the end of March to the beginning of April. You can also enjoy viewing cherry trees illuminated at night (around 6pm to 9pm). Please check the Himuro Shrine blog for detailed information for blooming.

Himuro Shrine

  • Address:1-4 Kasugano-cho, Nara city, Nara Prefecture
  • Getting there:15-minute walk from Kintetsu Nara Station
  • Telephone number:0742-23-7297
  • WebsiteHimuro Shrine(Japanese text only)
  • Blog:Himuro Shrine (Japanese text only)

The must-see spot in Nara; the Great Buddha of Todai-ji Temple.

Todaiji-temple and cherry blossom

Todai-ji temple is very famous for the Great Buddha. It’s a temple that represents the Nara period and was established by Emperor Shomu in 734. The Great Buddha hall is known as the largest wooden building in the world.

During the cherry blossom season, many cherry trees around the Great Buddha hall are in bloom. Areas include, the path between the rear of the Great Buddha hall from Nigatsu-do Hall and Sangatsu-do Hall, and on the path between Kagami-ike Pond and Mt. Wakakusa.
When you go through the Chu-mon gate after paying an admission fee, you’ll see beautiful drooping cherry trees and Somei-yoshino cherry trees along the corridor of the Great Buddha hall!

Todai-ji Temple

  • Address:406-1 Zoshi-cho, Nara city, Nara Prefecture
  • Getting there:20-minute walk from Kintetsu Nara Station / 5-minute walk from “Todai-ji Daibutsu-den Kasuga Taisha mae” bus stop of Nara Kotsu Bus
  • Telephone number:0742-22-5511
  • Entrance Fees:
    ・Adults, University Students and Junior High and High School Students 500yen
    ・Primary School Students 300yen
  • WebsiteTodai-ji Temple

Mt. Yoshino is also a famous spot for viewing cherry blossoms in Nara.
It’s a spectacular view of the mountain covered in cherry blossoms! Visit Nara this spring!

For details about Mt.Yoshino, go to the link below.
Mt. Yoshino in Nara is Japan’s best location for viewing cherry blossoms! You can enjoy 30,000 cherry blossom trees!

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Writer/ Translator

I love Japanese folkcraft article, traditional handicrafts and antiques. I’m seeking the Japanese people’s religious outlooks and its origins that are behind Japanese people’s unique sense and techniques rooted in the ordinary life.