Spring is my favorite time of year. Everything is finally out of hibernation and in full bloom, and looking forward to seeing the leaves on the trees and the flowers in the flowerbeds is one of the things that helps me get through the long, cold Michigan winters that at times feel endless for a (warm weather) nature lover like me. Here are 4 spring festivals to celebrate this year, and every year! Have you ever been to any of these?
From March through April, Japan’s cherry blossoms burst into beautiful tints of reds, pinks, and whites, and most cities around the country hold at least one festival to celebrate their blooming arrival. Hanami, which is a Japanese flower viewing event, is a popular way to celebrate individually, where people will set up ornate picnic spreads with loved ones near cherry blossoms and enjoy the gorgeous views.
Can’t make it to Japan? Traverse City, Michigan, Washington, D.C, and Macon, Georgia each have hundreds of thousands of blooming cherry blossom trees each year as well, a bit closer to home (assuming you live in the USA).
Coachella in California
I would have had a post about this festival if it hadn’t been cancelled in 2020, but no worries! I hope to someday soon visit one of the world’s largest and most exciting music festivals, where artists like BlackPink, Beyoncé, Calvin Harris, Lana del Rey, and more of the world’s top performing artists have made crowds go wild.
The scent of gorgeous lilacs in every tint and shade of purple imaginable, some as big as a loaf of bread, glistening after a refreshing spring rain, is one of my most cherished memories. If I close my eyes, I can easily imagine I’m back on my favorite island in the world, strolling through colorful gardens, surrounded by French flowers planted on the island nearly 300 years ago by French merchant traders. If you love flowers, natural beauty, and fun events like 10k runs, island tours, biking around the island, and stargazing amongst flowers, you need to visit Mackinac Island during its incredible Lilac Festival. The Lilac Festival is tied with Tulip Time Festival and Japan’s Cherry Blossom Festivals for my favorite spring festivals anywhere in the world!
I know winter in Michigan is officially over once I see the tulips bloom in Holland, Michigan during their Tulip Time Festival. Each year, more than 5 million colorful tulips imported from the Netherlands, all planted by volunteers during the previous fall, spring out of the ground (see what I did there?) and set the city awash in every color imaginable, from blacks and whites to pinks, oranges, yellows, and reds. This city was founded by immigrants from the Netherlands, and this spring festival has helped preserve their heritage for the last 91 years.
I hope one day to visit the original Tulip Festival in Keukenhof, Netherlands, and I’d also love to see Skagit Valley in Washington when their tulips are in full bloom. There are few more beautiful sights in the world than endless fields of colorful tulips welcoming spring and warmer weather along with it.