The pink blooms in the harsh winter
Kawazu Sakura is the earliest species of cherry blossom blooming in Japan, which blooms from February to early March every year. In 1955, Ms. Katsumi Iida who lived in Kawazu-cho discovered the species on the bank of Kawazu River and brought it home for planting. In 1974, it was officially named "Kawazu Sakura"; the original Kawazu Sakura tree planted in front of Ms. Iida's house was designated as a "Kawazu-cho Natural Memento" in the following year, and is now one of the popular Kawazu Sakura attractions for tourists.
During the flowering period, the banks of the river are dyed pink and extremely romantic. The new tender green leaves that grow about two weeks after the flowering period even decorate Kawazu River with a spring atmosphere. It is exactly the background of "Izu Odoko" (The Dancer of Izu) written by "Yasunari Kawabata" that won the Nobel Prize for Literature.
In the Kawazu Sakura Festival every year, about 150 vendors set up stalls along the coast of the Kawazu River to sell traditional Japanese snacks, handmade pickles, home-grown vegetables and fruits, etc. The lively vendors together with pink cherry blossoms form a special seasonal scene.