Cherry blossoms reflect the glowing sun at dusk.
Cherry blossoms reflect the glowing sun at dusk. Photo by Geoff Livingston.

Every spring, Washington, D.C. resembles a dreamy landscape painting come to life, as the city is blanketed in pink and white cherry blossoms, announcing that spring is here. Soft and romantic, these cherry trees were planted in 1912 as a gift from the mayor of Tokyo to symbolize the growing friendship between Japan and the United States.

Thomas Jefferson Memorial in Cherry Blossom season.
Visitors line the sidewalks near the Thomas Jefferson Memorial to view the cherry blossoms.

Peak bloom occurs around April 4, although it can vary from year to year. The annual National Cherry Blossom Festival, which runs from March 20 to April 15 this year, celebrates this glorious season with a variety of community events celebrating the arts, culture and more. Come see why 1.5 million people make the trip every year to experience the cherry blossoms.

Mark your calendar for the following events at the National Cherry Blossom Festival.

Detail of Cherry Blossom Branch
Photo by Elvert Barnes.

Saturday, March 31: Blossom Kite Festival

Saturday, April 7: Petalpalooza live music, entertainment and fireworks

Saturday, April 14: National Cherry Blossom Parade

Saturday, April 14: Sakura Matsuri Japanese Street Festival