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A Guide to Celebrating Cherry Blossoms this Year

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at American chapter.

In the District, spring’s arrival means more than warmer weather and later sunsets. The season marks the annual revival of the renowned cherry blossoms – a tradition stemming from Japan’s 1912 gift of friendship to the U.S.

This year’s bloom is expected to peak between March 23 and March 26. While cherry blossom festivities have continued for decades, Washington offers a range of special events to make this year’s season memorable.

Cherry Blossom Events

Blossom Kite Festival

The 2024 Blossom Kite Festival is an annual Washington tradition featuring a variety of special features this year. Alongside thousands of other attendees, visitors can fly kites and see choreographed performances from professional kite fliers. The festival also features traditional Japanese drumming in the Sakura Taiko Fest at Sylvan Theater and youth and adult kitemaker competitions. The event is free to attend.

The National Cherry Blossom Events Parade

The annual Cherry Blossom Parade will once again feature blossom-themed floats, festive music and energizing entertainers. The parade will take place on Constitution Avenue on the morning of April 13, and guests can purchase tickets in advance for $25 to $40.


On March 23, visitors can attend a free, all-day celebration of the cherry blossoms at the Wharf. The event features a lineup of eight bands, matcha tea sampling, balloon artistry, haiku creations and nighttime fireworks. Guests can also indulge in cherry blossom-inspired drinks at participating Wharf restaurants for a chance to win a free dinner for two.

Cherry Blossom Themed Foods

Compass Coffee’s Cherry Blossom Cream Cold Brew

Compass Coffee’s Cherry Blossom Cream Cold Brew is an annual spring specialty that not only  tastes but also looks like the blossoms. A combination of cold brew, cherry blossom syrup and cream results in a bright pink beverage that is sure to put customers in the spring spirit.

Waldorf Astoria’s Cherry Blossom Afternoon Tea

Peacock Alley, the Waldorf Astoria’s tea room, offers a traditional afternoon tea experience with cherry blossom-inspired treats and teas. Offered through June 24, guests can enjoy cherry blossom tea, cherry financiers and cherry blossom jam.

Residents Café and Bar

Residents, a classic district restaurant in the heart of Dupont Circle, adorns its patio with cherry blossom decorations. Customers can order a wide range of classics – from cinnamon bun pancakes to lemon risotto – while dining under a canopy of festive blossoms.

Cherry Blossom Locations

Tidal Basin

The Tidal Basin is the District’s most classic location to take in the cherry blossoms. The majority of the trees surrounding the two-mile loop are of the Yoshino variety. During their bloom, the trees adorn a view of the Jefferson Memorial, the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial and more with flowers and thousands of visitors.

National Arboretum

For a quieter cherry blossom experience, visitors can explore the National Arboretum. Hosting over 30 types of cherry trees, the blossoms begin two weeks before the Yoshino trees and last up to May. The arboretum is free and open to the public from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., offering over nine miles of paths and a diverse array of foliage.

Shreya Jyotishi

American '26

Shreya is a freshman at American University majoring in CLEG (Communication, Legal Institutions, Economics, and Government). She is originally from Westfield, New Jersey where she wrote and edited for her high school magazine and led a Girls Learn International chapter. She is passionate about feminism and LGBTQ+ rights and loves to expand her crystal collection, make Spotify playlists, and explore DC.