Have you ever seen a cherry blossom tunnel?
Or have you ever dreamed of walking along a stream,
carried by the wind and surrounding by white and pink falling flowers ?
Cherry blossom festivals’ atmosphere is the perfect mix with poetry, peace and wonder.
It is part of Asian folk culture and one of the most famous must be Jinhae Gunhangje festival.
It aims at first to highlight the Korean navy because the small city of Jinhae
is located on the south coast of the peninsula and sheltered a navy base.
But if this city is attracting about 1 million visitors each year, it’s because of the high concentration of cherry trees.
In fact, Jinhae has the highest cherry trees concentration in the world.
So imagine during the cherry blossom, all the city is turning to pink.
Because it’s in the South, less than 2 hours from Busan, Jinhae is one of the first cherry blossom area
and is a sign of spring’s coming.
When my Korean friend asked me to go to the festival with her, because she is from this city, I jumped at it!
So we took the bus, from Seoul to Jinhae, with a tour operator.
5 hours can be long, even more when you are stuck in traffic jam and can see by the window all the cherry trees.
But during the festival the traffic is too important for this kind of city.
When we finally arrived, I was amazed by the beauty of the city.
Even if it was the last weekend of festival and cherry trees were withering,
the main roads were still bordered by cherry blossoms.
We went to one of the most famous attraction in Jinhae, Yeojwacheon stream.
With all the cherry blossom surrounding it, it feels like an indoor place.
But the daylight main attraction must be Gyeonghwa station.
This former station is not working anymore but some wagons are attracting couples for a nice photo shoot.
All along the railroad and in the main streets of the city, there were street food carts and cherry blossom workshops.
Thanks to this workshops, I could taste some exclusive products of Jinhae,
such as Cherry blossom sikhye(Korean traditional drink made of rice) and also a cherry blossom ‘madeleine’,
buying in the most famous bakery in Jinhae.
You could find a lot of cherry blossom cakes and pastries there and try the famous ‘cherry blossom bread’.
When the night had come, we went for a walk along the stream.
There were beautiful light installations, making the stream even more magical.
We met a lot of couples but also families with young children, amazed by all the lights.
This was one of the best place and moment to take picture, because the area wasn’t so crowded anymore.
After that, we took the bus to go back to Seoul.
Despite leg pains and fatigue, this trip to Jinhae was just amazing.
I would recommend anyone to go there once, during the cherry blossom festival.
written by Emma Rock