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So many peach blossoms!
Price: 500 yen
In the end of March and beginning of April every year, Peach blossoms are blooming in Koga, Ibaraki.
I was able to go to Momo Matsturi there twice in one year, and both times were great. This year was the 40th year of Momo Matsuri in Koga. Koga Sogo Park is a huge park with around 1500 flowering peach trees, a pond with beautiful lotus flowers during summer, and a small cafe. It's a great place for hanami because it doesn't get very crowded.
Even during weekends when there were live performances and yatai selling food, there was lots of room for blankets to sit and enjoy warm weather while eating and drinking. Local vendors also sold things like peach wine and handmade products. I wanted to try so many foods, but only got oden and a chocolate pudding filled Imagawayaki. It's like a round taiyaki, filled with anko and other sweet things. I also brought some drinks and snacks when I went there with friends.
If we ride a bike or walk to the park and don't buy food there, it's free to enjoy the peach blossoms. It's 500 yen per car to park and free to enter, even during the matsuri. It's a 35 minute walk from Koga Station. We can rent bicyicles for free from Koga station and ride to the park in about 15 minutes, which is what I recommend. The park is open from 9:00-17:00.
There's a hill and play area, a small stream, and lots of open space which is perfect for kids. There are also traditional thatched roof Japanese houses on one side of the park and we can go inside to look around. It's nice to visit there any time of year, but Momo Matsuri is the most beautiful time to go.