Japan - cherry blossoms

Known throughout the world for their brief, beautiful bloom, Cherry Blossom trees burst into vibrant pink wherever they are grown. However, nowhere is this phenomenon more beloved and celebrated, then in the country of Japan.

As spring arrives some time around April, the cherry blossom trees begin to explode into a vibrant pink bloom. A wave of colour rolls Northward up the country as the warmer weather arrives. The dark brown winter palette of hillsides and parks begins to wash away as a gentle pink flower unfolds itself on branch after branch, tree after tree.

Before we caught up with this slow wave of colour I had pretty low expectations, We hadn't made any plans to specifically catch the bloom either so we were surprised and unexpectedly delighted when we stumbled into a grove of cherry blossom trees on a hillside overlooking mt Fuji.

We somehow cheated the system by heading into higher altitude. In an area where all around the bloom had come and gone, here it was only just reaching its peak.

Only days after the petals open, they start to loosen their grip on their branches and slowly drop from the tree, caught in the spring breeze.

One by one they fall until the parks and valleys are filled with thousands upon thousands of snowflake-like petals fluttering through the air.

To say Japan is passionate about this is an understatement. It is an absolute cultural infection and nothing is spared. The entire country resonates with energy, excitement and colour. The actual pink petals on the tree are only a small part of the experience.