Cherry Blossoms

Japan’s Top 100 Blossoms: Mato Park (Akita)

The small island in the middle of Mato Park’s pond and the green pines of the adjacent hill reflected in the water are made even more picturesque in the spring by the blossoms of 2,000 cherry trees. The park’s annual sakura festival is famous for its unique barrel-rowing race.

Participants in the barrel-rowing contest hop into large tubs measuring 40 centimeters deep and 90 centimeters in diameter and row toward the goal with their bare hands. The area has long been a center of sake production, and the race is said to have begun when residents, for fun, climbed into sake barrels that were floated in water to prevent the hoop from coming loose.

Mato Park (Akita)

  • Varieties: Somei yoshino, yamazakura, etc.
  • No. of trees: 2,000
  • When: Mid- to late April
  • Hours: Open 24 hrs.
  • Admission: Free
  • Address: Masudamachi, Masuda, Yokote-shi, Akita
  • Website: Masuda Town Tourist Agency

Nearby hanami site

Near Mato Park

Sakura 100: Japan’s Best Blossoms

(Translated from Japanese. Banner photo © Masuda Town Tourist Agency.)

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