People Are Enjoying Japan’s Cherry Blossoms Indoors With “Virtual Hanami”

Close Up of Cherry Blossoms

Photo: Stock Photos from tungtopgun/Shutterstock

Each spring, locals and visitors flood parks across Japan in order to enjoy the iconic cherry blossoms. Also known as sakura, these blossoms hold a special place in Japanese culture. The annual ritual of hanami, or “flower viewing,” typically involves arranging parties and picnics at parks with friends and family to take in the cherry blossoms. However, the 2020 cherry blossom season is decidedly different, with the coronavirus pandemic putting a damper on outdoor activities.

As international travel has come to a halt and the citizens of Japan are being encouraged to stay indoors, people are finding new ways to enjoy cherry blossom season. While you may not be able to stroll outside and see the sakura in person, there are a lot of ways to bring these flowers into your home. That could mean bringing a cherry blossom-inspired gift or two into your home or engaging in virtual hanami.

Luckily, there are plenty of videos and photos of cherry blossoms to get you into the spirit. Japan's Weather News channel has placed 50 cherry blossom videos online. Though they're from a few years ago, these 360-degree videos will transport you to some of Japan's most beloved sakura viewing spots. Similarly, ANN News also put together a video to encourage digital hanami in this time of crisis.

Across the internet, people are also showing their support by posting their favorite cherry blossom photos under the hashtag #virtualhanami. Let's take a look at some of our favorite sakura videos and photos to help get you in the spirit while we wait to view next year's blossoms in person.

We can travel or go outside, but that doesn't mean we can't celebrate sakura. These videos will help bring cherry blossom viewing into your home.

People are also posting their #virtualhanami photos of cherry blossoms in a show of solidarity.

 

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h/t: [Spoon & Tamago]

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Jessica Stewart

Jessica Stewart is a Contributing Writer and Digital Media Specialist for My Modern Met, as well as a curator and art historian. She earned her MA in Renaissance Studies from University College London and now lives in Rome, Italy. She cultivated expertise in street art which led to the purchase of her photographic archive by the Treccani Italian Encyclopedia in 2014. When she’s not spending time with her three dogs, she also manages the studio of a successful street artist. In 2013, she authored the book 'Street Art Stories Roma' and most recently contributed to 'Crossroads: A Glimpse Into the Life of Alice Pasquini'. You can follow her adventures online at @romephotoblog.

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