Saluting spring at Sakura under the cherry blossoms

Sakura Festival
April 30, May 1, 11:00 -16:30; Langelinie Park, Cph Ø;

In 2006, a couple of hundred Japanese cherry trees were presented to Copenhagen Municipality by the Danish Honorary Consul in Hiroshima as a symbol of friendship between the land of the rising sun and the land of the occasional sun. Since 2008, people have been meeting under the cherry blossom trees for the traditional Japanese picnic festival of Sakura.

To enjoy this colourful Japanese version of hygge, families and friends get out their blankets in the shade of the pink and white blossoms, surrounded by a cheerful celebration of Japanese culture.

The program for both days is packed full of activities. An energetic display of Japanese drumming starts off the proceedings. Martial arts, of course, are represented and there are plenty of chops, kicks and throws for those with a passion for karate and judo. There are also kendo demonstrations for those who like the steely swish of blades. Both days end with the customary group Bonodori circle dance.

The kimono fashion show is a yearly tradition, as are the tea ceremony, haiku recitals, ink wash painting and ikebana flower arranging.

The grounds will quite probably be full of teenagers dressed up as their favourite manga cartoon characters, just to add a surreal touch to the events.

Spring has sprung and the cherry blossoms are in bloom – so put down that sudoko puzzle and head for the waterside location of Langelinie and turn a little bit Japanese.