In early May each year, the shibazakura (also known as moss phlox, sometimes dubbed “pink moss”) forms an astonishing carpet of pink across the hillside in Higashimokoto. The sea of brilliantly pink petals ripples in the breeze, creating an utterly enchanting atmosphere.
The Higashimokoto Shibazakura Park is the largest area of planted moss in Japan. About 800,000 of the shibazakura flowers bloom there each spring in a breathtaking display of nature’s beauty. The blossoms cover the earth in a thick blanket of colorful petals.
Every year during the bloom, a festival is held to celebrate this annual treat. Footpaths wind through the vibrant “pink moss,” letting people immerse themselves in the landscape (be sure to stay on the paths to avoid damaging any plants). The event draws far fewer tourists than Japan’s famous cherry blossom festivals, meaning you can still get a fun floral experience without as many of the crowds.
Know Before You Go
There is an entry fee of ¥500 for adults or ¥250 for children during peak season (May through June), but it's free during the off season. Parking is available and free of charge.