Every year, from late March to early May the cherry blossom front (桜前線 sakura zensen) moves in a wave across Japan from southwest to northeast. Blue tarps and picnic lunches blanket the best viewing spots as the full bloom arrives in each location. For anime seichijunrei fans and butaitanbou practitioners, this also means a precious and short window of time to capture the location models for favorite works before the blossoms drop. In cases where sakura were depicted in the work, this is a brief opportunity for the perfectionist to capture images of locations as they appeared in the series. Otherwise, its a fun and fleeting chance to see these places with an extra dusting of pink and white.

I followed anime pilgrims as they visited sites during this time period and curated some of the best images from each location. Returning favorites include Uji, Kyoto Prefecture for Hibike! Euphonium; Kawagoe, Saitama Prefecture for Tsuki ga Kirei; Ōgaki, Gifu Prefecture for Koe no Katachi; Noto Railway stations in Ishikawa Prefecture for Hanasaku Iroha; and Hirosaki, Aomori Prefecture for Flying Witch. But they’re all wonderful!

The featured image of Ujigami Jinja at top was graciously provided by Ebisu (夷 @ye_bi_su).

Karatsu, Saga Prefecture

Yūri!!! on Ice

https://twitter.com/caravan1979/status/978562079681466368

Takehara, Hiroshima Prefecture

Tamayura

@tsumuri_f5 made a cherry blossom pilgrimage to Takehara, Hiroshima Prefecture for Tamayura.

Kan’onji, Kagawa Prefecture

Yūki Yūna wa Yūsha de Aru

https://twitter.com/lidges/status/978949695929171969

Nishinomiya, Hyōgo Prefecture

Suzumiya Haruhi

Kyoto

Hibike! Euphonium

Tamako Market

K-On!

Uji, Kyoto Prefecture

Hibike! Euphonium

Kashihara, Nara Prefecture

Kyōkai no Kanata

https://twitter.com/nobucafe/status/979905201363591169

Ōtsu, Shiga Prefecture

Chūnibyō demo Koi ga Shitai!

Toyosato, Shiga Prefecture

K-On!

https://twitter.com/toyosato_kankou/status/979609526637907968

Numazu, Shizuoka Prefecture

Love Live! Sunshine!!

https://twitter.com/kuro_kirinn/status/977754294920273920

https://twitter.com/Ken107Muro/status/977792053219270656

Itō, Shizuoka Prefecture

Amanchu!

Kawagoe, Saitama Prefecture

Tsuki ga Kirei

@fureshima2223 (post), @fragments_sue (post), @Roan_Inish (post) and @626shin (post) made cherry blossom pilgrimages to Kawagoe, Saitama Prefecture for Tsuki ga Kirei.

Hannō, Saitama Prefecture

Yama no Susume

@teo_imperial made a cherry blossom pilgrimage to Hannō, Saitama Prefecture for Yama no Susume.

Ogawa, Saitama Prefecture

Non Non Biyori

The blog Shiofilm published a cherry blossom pilgrimage to Ogawa, Saitama Prefecture for Non Non Biyori.

Chichibu, Saitama Prefecture

Ano Hi Mita Hana no Namae o Bokutachi wa Mada Shiranai., Kokoro ga Sakebitagatterunda.

Kuki, Saitama Prefecture

Lucky Star

Fujisawa, Kanagawa Prefecture

Just Because!

Yokosuka, Kanagawa Prefecture

Tamayura

Denenchōfu-honchō, Ōta Ward, Tokyo Metropolis

Clannad

Higashi-Ōizumi, Nerima Ward, Tokyo Metropolis

Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso

Minamitanaka, Nerima Ward, Tokyo Metropolis

Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso

https://twitter.com/0063shirokuma/status/977722324680982528

Takada, Toshima Ward, Tokyo Metropolis

Saenai Hiroin no Sodatekata, BanG Dream!

https://twitter.com/mohukan/status/978889525823983621

https://twitter.com/mohukan/status/978896921183051776

Tama, Tokyo Metropolis

Toaru Kagaku no Railgun

https://twitter.com/dejiboo1/status/979877218674401280

Mizuho, Tokyo Metropolis

Clannad

Narashino, Chiba Prefecture

Kin’iro Mosaic

Tatebayashi, Gunma Prefecture

Sora Yorimo Tōi Basho

Iwami, Tottori Prefecture

Free!

https://twitter.com/santec_k/status/978856874647998464

Ōgaki, Gifu Prefecture

Koe no Katachi

@hoe0808 made a cherry blossom pilgrimage to Ōgaki, Gifu Prefecture for Koe no Katachi.

Takayama, Gifu Prefecture

Hyōka

@offtama published a report with extensive photography from the Takayama Matsuri, including cherry blossoms and Hyōka pilgrimage.

Uwaoka, Daigo, Ibaraki Prefecture

Girls und Panzer

https://twitter.com/daigogarupan/status/981398607302742016

Nishigishi “Yunosagi” Station, Nanao, Ishikawa Prefecture

Hanasaku Iroha

Noto-Kashima Station, Anamizu, Ishikawa Prefecture

Hanasaku Iroha

@inoue1024 created a video of the cherry blossoms and Hanasaku Iroha wrapped trains at Noto-Kashima Station:

Yuwaku Onsen, Kanazawa, Ishikawa Prefecture

Hanasaku Iroha

Nanto, Toyama Prefecture

Sakura Quest

Komoro, Nagano Prefecture

Ano Natsu de Matteru

Matsumoto, Nagano Prefecture

Orange

Komagane, Nagano Prefecture

Yuru Camp

Suwa, Nagano Prefecture

Yuru Camp

Shirakawa, Fukushima Prefecture

Comic Girls

Hirosaki, Aomori Prefecture

Flying Witch

Hakodate

Love Live! Sunshine!!