Spring is without a doubt the most popular time of year in Japan. The weather is warming up, the flowers are starting to bloom and cherry blossom-flavoured snacks are making their way into cafes and convenience stores. It’s also the perfect time to learn or brush up on some Japanese vocabulary related to spring.
Here are some common words you’ll see associated with spring in Japan.
Haru rashikunatte kimashita ne.
It’s starting to look like spring.
Cherry blossoms. Maybe the single most common piece of Japanese vocabulary you’ll hear in spring!
Sakura wa hontō ni kirei desu yo.
The cherry blossoms are really beautiful.
Flowers are a huge part of spring in Japan and there are many festivals celebrating other flowers aside from cherry blossoms.
Haru niwa takusan no hana ga sakihajimemasu.
In spring, many flowers start to bloom.
Cherry blossoms at night.
To maximise the cherry blossom experience, some parks offer night-time viewings of sakura where they light up the trees after dark. It offers a completely different vibe to the daytime and a chance for all the night owls to also appreciate cherry blossoms.
Kinō, shigoto no ato ni yozakura wo mini ikimashita.
I went to view cherry blossoms after work last night.
Plum blossoms commonly bloom around the same time or slightly earlier than cherry blossoms. They might look very similar, but if you look carefully, they don’t have the split at the end of their petals like cherry blossoms do.
Ume no hana wa sangatsu ni sakimasu.
Plum blossoms bloom in March.
Going to a hanami party is a true highlight for anyone experiencing spring in Japan. It’s an extremely popular way to celebrate spring and spend time with friends, family or colleagues. Top cherry blossom locations are so popular that you’ll need to be quick if you want to get some prime real estate under a blossoming cherry tree!
Issho ni hanami ni ikimasenka?
Would you like to go flower viewing together?
春の季節 (Haru no kisetsu)
Haru no kisetsu wa daitai san kagetsu kan desu.
The spring season lasts for approximately three months.
Kyō wa harusaki no yō na tenki desu.
The weather today is like early spring.
Vernal equinox, which is the astrological start of spring. This is celebrated as a public holiday in Japan, as is the Autumnal equinox in September.
Shunbun no hi wa toshi ni yotte chigai masu.
The vernal equinox is different depending on the year.
Cherry blossom forecast.
These forecasts are usually shared on the news and internet, detailing when people can expect to see cherry blossoms in full bloom.
Kaikayosō ni yoreba, kotoshi no sakura no kaika wa heinen yori hayakunaru tokoro ga ōi desu.
According to the cherry blossom forecast, the cherry blossoms will bloom earlier than a normal year in many areas.
Tokyo dewa, sakura ga mankai desu.
In Tokyo, the cherry blossoms are in full bloom.
桜吹雪 (Sakura fubuki)
Blizzard of falling cherry blossoms.
This is used to describe when wind blows cherry blossom petals off the trees, making it look almost like pink snow.
Kyō wa kaze ga tsuyoi node sakura fubuki ga matte imasu.
The wind is strong today, so cherry blossom snowstorm is blowing.
Watashi kafunshō nan desu.
I have hay fever.
Read more about how to deal with hay fever in Japan.
入社式 (Nyūsha shiki)
The entrance ceremony at the company.
Job-hunting for university students begins before they graduate and is known as “shūshoku katsudō 就職活動”, or “shūkatsu 就活” for short. It’s a huge process that results in new graduates starting their jobs all at the same time in April. Therefore it’s common for companies to hold a ceremony to welcome their new starters.
Kyō wa nyūsha shiki desu.
Today is the entrance ceremony at my company.
There is also a school version called 入学式 (Nyūgaku shiki) at the start of each school year in April.
新生活 (Shin seikatsu)
A new life.
Spring in Japan is heavily associated with new beginnings, new life and a fresh start. It’s the start of the new fiscal year and school year, while also bringing in a sense of hope for what’s to come.
Haru kara Tokyo de shin seikatsu ga hajimari masu.
My new life will begin in Tokyo this spring.
Learn more about spring in Japan
We love spring in Japan and everything it offers. Read some of our other spring-related articles on our blog to learn more about this special season.
Celebrating beginnings with cherry blossoms in Japan
10 cherry blossom spots in Tokyo
Sakura food and drinks to try when you’re in Japan
Liked learning Japanese vocabulary related to spring? Check out some of our other language articles on our blog.