Cycling in spring & Vancouver’s cherry blossoms
It’s springtime in Vancouver!! What better way to celebrate than by taking more interesting cycle-routes home from work, to see some of Vancouver’s cherry blossoms. I am used to the amazing cherry blossoms in Nara, Japan (especially in Yoshino.) Back in Japan, and in the UK, the best blossoms are normally found within parkland areas. What I found amazing about Vancouver’s cherry blossoms is that you can find them on residential streets. In Vancouver they have chosen one type of tree to line each street. This means that all the trees on any particular street bloom at the same time. It is not quite as good for hanami (cherry blossom viewing parties) as you’d be right next to roads BUT it is fantastic for cycling around to see the prettiness!
Now if you’re new to cycling, please read my post from last year when I just got started cycling in Vancouver. That post should help you get set up and ready to ride!
First Sakura of 2018
The first cherry blossoms I saw this year were down by English Bay, on the edge of False Creek. There were only a couple of trees in bloom, but they were a really pretty shade of pink.
If you fancy a super easy cycle ride, you can amble around Stanley Park. There are a few of Vancouver’s cherry blossoms around Stanley park, but the real reason to explore this area on a bike is that it is just so pretty! My favourite spot is near Siwash Rock, about two thirds of the way around on a bike.
Vancouver’s cherry blossoms – Coal Harbour
Once you’ve cycled around Stanley park, there are some more gorgeous cherry blossoms in coal harbour, close to Cadero park. I love the way you can see all the tall buildings of downtown Vancouver through the blossoms.
More Blossoms – Ontario Street
When I feel like some extra exercise on the way home from work, I take a longer route home, past Queen Elizabeth Park and down the cycle path on Ontario street. At the moment this street is covered in magnolia flowers. At least I *think* they are magnolias! They look different to the trees I am used to in London! Anyway, the very best view is right in the middle of the street, so I didn’t take many photos. But isn’t this gorgeous!? I love the look of these trees just as much as all the cherry blossoms!
Sakura Days Japan Fair and VanDusen Botanical Garden
Another place on my longer-than-normal cycle route home is the VanDusen Botanical Garden. Each year they hold a Sakura Days Japan Fair to show off Vancouver’s cherry blossoms. I volunteered to help out during the festival (I used to live in Japan as part of the JET programme, so I was on a booth promoting that programme.) Unfortunately there aren’t a huge number of cherry blossom trees inside the garden, but there were some other sunning trees full of flowers, so I took some photos to share with you all.
Even if the VanDusen Botanical Garden didn’t have a huge number of cherry blossoms, there were still quite a few pretty flowers in bloom, so I had a good explore after helping at the Sakura Days event.
There is even a maze! It doesn’t take very long to find your way around it, and it is fun to try!
I also wandered past a Japanese rock garden as well as a pretty waterfall.
I even found a teeny bamboo grove. This has nothing on the epic bamboo grove in Arashiyama, to the West of Kyoto, but it was stll nice to see it!
Heading home via more of Vancouver’s cherry blossoms
These last blossoms were along the edge of the 29th Avenue cycle lane. There was a really gorgeous pink magnolia tree right next to a cherry blossom tree in full bloom. Gorgeous. eh!?
My bike’s spring makeover:
I am not sure if I mentioned this on my blog, but after I first bought my bike, I decorated the edges of my bike basket with autumnal leaves and flowers. I then cycled around Vancouver looking at all the gorgeous autumnal leaves. The flowers held up pretty well through the winter, but a few of them had fallen off. This week I added a whole bunch of springy flowers. It makes me look a little daft, but I love them anyway! What do you think?
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45 thoughts on “Cycling in spring & Vancouver’s cherry blossoms”
Beautiful blossoms and the bike, Josy. I still think you have my bike 😃
Hehehe. It’s pretty easy to add flowers to the basket, so we could totally have matching bikes!!
I have the receipt for my bike though, so you can’t claim it 😉
Beautiful Cherry Blossoms!!
Thanks Ritu! I thought that was the end of it, but they were even prettier this weekend!
Nature has its way of continually giving!
These photos are so beautiful, I might be tearing up over here.
Awww thanks Lorna, although I wasn’t expecting it to be an eye-leak-worthy post!!
Beautiful! My cherry trees are just blooming now now, the apple blossom is a few days behind, but everything is a full week behind this time last year. Been a cold old winter!
I have a feeling that is what happened last year here. We arrived in June, but everyone said the flowers were late by several weeks!
I hope you have a lovely summer to make up for the chilly winter!
Great photos – and voted! 🙂
Thank you so much Ruth!!
Thank you! <3
Sensation spring blossoms and I LOVE your bike makeover 🙂 Have pinned this.
A few flowers fell off already (it’s not very aerodynamic) so I’m glad I took a photo! 😉
Such gorgeous colours, I love this time of year. Xx
I love it in Nara, London AND Vancouver. I guess that means I’d love it everywhere!!
Haha… that’s right and you would love it here in Melbourne too. Xx
Awww your bike looks so cute Josy! Thanks for sharing your pictures of spring! I definitely needed to see them this morning since I woke up to a sprinkling of snow on the ground….GRRRR
No way!? Your side of Canada really does sound colder! Although, once I saw snow fall on the sakura flowers and it was sooooo pretty!!
It was just a little bit of snow but it is colder today. I’m not happy with it! Send some of that BC sunshine and warmth this way!!
*sending as much as I can, coupled with doctor who music because that seems appropriate*
Wow! Awesome pics! I’ve definitely got to visit Vancouver sometime. We are just starting our spring season and the flowers haven’t bloomed yet, but your pics of the cherry blossoms give me hope that spring is on its way! 🙂
It must be soon!
We’re on the second wave of flowers now, so the trees have gone even more pink!
When Hisaka and I visited Vancouver last April we found some beautiful cherry blossom right in the middle (corner of Bute Street and Eihu Lane) bordering an office block. It was quite a surprise to see the trees there amongst the tower blocks.
Nest time you cycle to Stanley Park don’t forget to go to the Inforrmation Booth then turn left along the foot/cycle path that goes behind the back of the aquarium and onwards a short way to find a surprising piece of history which I think will interest you.
Oooh I went there and found it!
I think you mentioned in on another post, so I went exploring, met a raccoon for the first time, and found the Japanese Canadian War Memorial!
That was what I wanted you to find. It was such an unexpected thing to discover that there were Japanese soldiers (albeit adopted Canadians) fighting with the Allies on the Western Front. It was interesting because they had taken becoming Canadians, and therefore being part of the British Empire so seriously.
And it is a pretty monument, in a beautiful setting! I am really glad you told me about it.
Gorgeous, gorgeous & more gorgeous. One of the most beautiful posts ever and I ADORE your bike’s basket.
Yaaaay! I’m glad you guys seem to like it! I think my colleagues think I am mad! 😉
Gorgeous photos! And I love the idea that people will see you around and come to recognize you as “that awesome-and-not-a-bit-daft flower-bike lady!” 🙂
Hahaha. I have a feeling it’ll be more like that awesome-and-a-bit-daft flower-bike lady! That’s okay though because it makes me smile.
SOOO gorgeous and I love, love, love your bike!!
Yay! I’m so glad you like it! <3
Marc thought I was loopy when I came home with a pile of fake flowers!
Oh my goodness, the VanDusen Botanical Garden looks absolutely amazing (well all of your pictures did)! But, I think I could spend hours in that garden just sitting under those beautiful trees and strolling through the garden. So pretty!
I also love that you traveled to see all of these places by bike – a much better way to be ‘present’ with your journey than in a car. Lovely, Josy!
Ha! We didn’t buy a car yet, so my bike is the fastest option available to me. I have really started to love it though. I plan to keep cycling to work even when we do eventually buy a car. <3
I felt a little bad to the VanDusen Botanical Gardens. I mean, they were really nice, but I am so used to the epic Kew gardens in London, that I was slightly underwhelmed(!) It made me realise we really are spoiled for gardens in the UK!
Well, now I must see the Kew gardens!🌸🌸🌸
It is looooovely there!
Aww the cherry blossoms here are amazing! I’ve just moved onto a street full of them!
Also I just found out about that maze haha, I was gonna ask if you wanted to do it! That’s funny.
It doesn’t take very long to do it! It is a nice garden, but if you’ve been to Kew or large English gardens, don’t go out of your way to go there!!
I LOVE that part of Stanley Park where you can see those rock islands! I’ve only been ton Vancouver in the Winter, and have always wanted to go in the Summer – it looks so beautiful. P.S. Travelling/commuting by bike is the absolute best way to get around 🙂
We arrived here last summer and I was blown away by how lovely it is here in the sun! I hope you do get to pop over and see Vancouver at the best time of year!! 😉
So glad spring has finally sprung. It sure has been taking its time settling in here in the South in the U.S. The blossoming trees are gorgeous.
I love the flowers on your bike basket, too.
w/a Jansen Schmidt
Thank you! I had great fun choosing some in the fake-flower shop! 🙂
I hope the spring comes to you soon! We are all ready for a little more warmth.