Japan’s cherry blossom season may look a little different this year, with travel restrictions and closures at some public parks, but that doesn’t mean you’ll have to miss out. Thanks to Japanese tech company Drone Entertainment Inc, you’ll be able to catch gorgeous 4K aerial footage of sakura across Japan on YouTube with the 2022 Sakura Drone Project.

Online hanami day is scheduled for Sunday March 27 and will feature a live-stream of Japan’s most spectacular sakura spots. Since it’s all filmed by a drone camera, you’ll get to see the sakura from an usual perspective – think of it as a flying hanami. The live-stream will run from 12noon to 8pm JST, so there’ll be plenty of time to drop in, even if you’re in a different timezone. There’s no link to the stream yet, but you’ll be able to access the video from Sakura Drone Project’s YouTube channel here.

Unlike hanami viewing in-person where you usually stroll or sit under sakura trees, the drone project gives you a chance to appreciate sakura from a bird’s-eye view. If you can’t wait for the stream, just check out the nearly hour-long video from the 2020 Sakura Drone Project above. 

Sakura Drone Project
Photo: Sakura Drone Project

The Sakura Drone Project also offers sakura wallpapers which you can download for free. From Mt Yoshino in Nara prefecture to the Takabe no Mori Park in Okayama, there are 17 hi-res images you can use for your desktop or video chats. 

Nonpi sakura bento
Photo: Nonpi

And if you’re in Japan, long-established Tokyo bento shop Kanda Myojin Miyabi is collaborating with the Sakura Drone Project to offer special hanami bento you can enjoy along with your online viewing experience. The bento features nine small dishes made with seasonal ingredients, including sakura soba and sakurahana sushi. The bento is available for order between March 4 and April 26 and costs ¥4,950 (shipping included) for one bento. To order the bento, visit here.

For more information on the Sakura Drone Project, visit the website.

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