Nagoya is worth exploring in spring, especially when sakura start blooming. It has a number of popular cherry blossom spots including one very well known historic landmark, Nagoya Castle. In fact, the castle itself is quite a popular place to see abundance of sakura in Japan. Won’t it be an amazing place to visit then?!

If you are looking for some itinerary ideas about how to spend a few days in Nagoya in the spring to see sakura then you have come to the right place. I want to share my ideas as a result you can get the most out of your Nagoya trip.

When it comes to accommodation, I always prefer staying overnight at Just Inn Premium Nagoya Station. According to my experience, it’s budget friendly and located close to Nagoya Station. You will have to walk for 10-12 minutes from the station to reach the hotel.

Please note this suggested itinerary does not involve a lot of walking, though. So, let’s get started!

Nagoya Itinerary – Day 1

Nagoya Castle and Sakura. Photo Credit: Paul Davidson at Flickr.

Places of Interest: Nagoya Castle, Tokugawa Art Museum, Tokugawa-en Garden, and Sakae district.

If it’s your first time in Nagoya city, you might be wondering what interesting places there are to make your trip unforgettable. Now let me introduce to you some amazing attractions of Nagoya that are perfect for viewing cherry blossoms and historically profound, such as Nagoya Castle.

Before you start off your day trip in Nagoya city, I would like you to check out this Subway & Bus 1 Day Pass. This link provides you all the necessary information you need to know before purchasing it.

Sakura on the Nagoya Castle Grounds. Photo Credit: briethe at Flickr.

It offers unlimited travel on the subway and buses in Nagoya City for 1 day including the Me-guru Nagoya Sightseeing Route Bus. This is a perfect 1 day ticket for tourists to get around the city which in fact saves you some money. Therefore, I highly recommend you to buy this tourist pass.

Your first destination for the day will be Nagoya Castle, a truly great example of traditional Japanese architecture. This is an interesting sight to behold and a must see place in the city during spring when cherry trees there are in full bloom. The entire area of the castle has a thousand of cherry trees of different varieties.

Built by Tokugawa Ieyasu and Burned down in the air raids of 1945 during the World War II, this historic castle is the prime landmark of Nagoya city. The Golden Shachihoko (golden dolphins), found on the top of the castle are incredible monuments to observe.

Gate of Tokugawa Art Museum. Photo Credit: Tokugawa Reimei Kai at Wikimedia Commons.

The area within the castle grounds is full of amazing surprises, such as the Honmaru Goten, towers, gates, and other buildings including one beautiful garden, there is so much to appreciate! Everything there is thoughtfully designed and pretty impressive!

Visitors can enjoy a nice view of Nagoya city and the beautiful surroundings of the castle grounds from the observation room on the seventh floor of the castle. Spend your time by strolling around the castle grounds and visiting its buildings, and that’s all what you have to do there before you take your lunch.

Next destination for the day is the Tokugawa Art Museum. You will get there by the Me-guru Nagoya Sightseeing Route Bus. The museum houses over 10,000 artifacts including a number of National Treasures and Important Cultural Properties. This is the right place in Japan to learn the history and culture of the Owari Tokugawa feudal lords of the Edo Period. Throughout the year, special exhibitions are held in the main building of the Tokugawa Art Museum and Hosa Library exhibition room.

A view of Nagoya TV Tower from Oasis 21. Photo Credit: JahnmitJa at Flickr.

Next to the museum is a beautiful Japanese landscape garden called Tokugawa-en. It has a large pond at its center. Its impressive walkways lead you to enjoy the beautiful surroundings. Even though autumn is considered the best time to visit the garden to see fall foliage, yet a visit to the garden in spring will be just an amazing experience.

Finish the first day of your Nagoya Itinerary by visiting Sakae district. The area comprises many restaurants, shopping malls and department stores and it’s the right place you have to visit if you want to get in the mood for shopping. There are two places that you must visit are Nagoya TV Tower in Hisaya-odori Park and Oasis 21. You will see some sakura trees and other flowers around the Nagoya TV Tower in the park.

Nagoya Itinerary – Day 2

Yamazakigawa sakura! Photo Credit: Bariston at Wikimedia Commons.

Places of Interest: Yamazakigawa Riverside, Tsuruma Park and JR Central Tower.

Today you will encounter the best and most popular hanami spot in Nagoya city. Be prepared to see abundance of beautiful sakura in a place called Yamazakigawa Riverside.

One of Japan’s top 100 cherry blossom spots, Yamazakigawa Riverside (Shikinomichi or Path of Four Seasons) is a breathtaking sakura viewing spot in Nagoya. The path along the Yamazaki River is lined by hundreds of cherry trees for about 2.5 kilometers. Take a leisurely stroll along the riverside though the path and enjoy the peaceful atmosphere it creates during springtime.

Sakura at Tsuruma Park. Photo Credit: アラツク at Wikimedia Commons.

To access the riverside, you have to hop on a train to Mizuho Undojo Nishi Station from Nagoya Station on the Sakuradori Line. That will take 20 minutes. From the station, walk a while and you will be there!

Your next place to visit is Tsuruma Park, another popular hanami spot in the city, located next to Tsurumai Station. Opened in 1909 as a first public park in Nagoya city, Tsuruma Park offers visitors a lively atmosphere during its hanami season. The park features about 750 cherry trees, a Japanese style garden, flower bed, rose garden, food stands, walkways, and so on. When sakura trees here are in full bloom, you will witness a lot of visitors visiting the park with their friends and families; especially it happens over the weekend.

JR Central Towers. Photo Credit: Tennen-Gas at Wikimedia Commons.

Reaching Tsuruma Park from Mizuho Undojo Nishi Station is easy.

Find the perfect route here: Mizuho Undojo Nishi Station (Sakuradori Line) -> Gokiso Station (Tsurumai Line) -> Tsurumai Station. The entire ride would take less than a-14 minute.

Before you call it a day, I would like you to spend rest of the time at Nagoya Station; especially you should explore the area of JR Central Tower. Packed with departmental stores, shops, bars and restaurants, the area is actually worth visiting. You will always enjoy your time there, no matter what you are going to do. That’s for sure!

Nagoya Itinerary – Day 3

Inuyama Castle and Sakura. Photo Credit: Alpsdake at Wikimedia Commons.

Places of Interest: Inuyama Castle

On the outskirts of Nagoya City, there is the famous Inuyama Castle in Inuyama city. It takes less than 40 minutes to reach there from Nagoya city by train. So don’t you think that you should go there and be overwhelmed by its 16th century riverside castle and cherry blossoms?

It sits on a small hill near the Kiso River. Built in 1537, Inuyama Castle is considered one of only twelve original castles left in Japan (survived many natural disasters and wars) and its main keeps have been designated as national treasures. It becomes a pretty wonderful place to behold when sakura start to bloom around the main castle keep.

You will walk through this road that goes along the Kiso river to Inuyama-Yuen Station. Photo Credit: DozoDomo at Flickr.

From the top of the castle, you will be able to observe breathtaking views of the city, Kiso River and sakura trees scattered within the castle grounds. I am sure you can take a lot of amazing photographs of the beautiful surroundings from there.

You are suggested to get off at Inuyama Station and walk through the castle town. Whether you believe it or not, that will be once in a life time experience for you! When leaving for Nagoya, please hop on a train from Inuyama-Yuen Station.

When your day trip to Inuyama is over, get back to Nagoya Station and spend the evening on your own. Maybe you can find a nice restaurant somewhere around JR Nagoya Station and satisfy your stomach to the fullest.

That’s it! Don’t you think that this suggested itinerary inspire you to explore Nagoya even more? Nagoya surprises everyone. So are you coming to visit Nagoya this spring? Thank you.