Sydney Cherry Blossom Festival to feature everything from J-Pop to sumo wrestling

Japanese culture will be front and centre as Auburn’s Japanese Botanic Gardens host the Sydney Cherry Blossom Festival in August. Set to be the biggest Japanese Festival in Australia, the spectacular surrounds will be filled with two weeks of Japanese food, drink, music, garden shows, art, anime, cosplay, and even a special sumo competition.

From the festival’s first night, on 18th August, the blossoming cherry blossoms in the park will be illuminated while a screen hosts an exclusive screening of Kimi No Na Wa (Your Name). This Yozakura (night cherry blossom viewing) will be repeated on August 25th with a screening of Shin Godzilla. Both screenings are ticketed and limited to a very small number of guests.

During the days those heading along to the park will be immersed in a world inspired by various traditions, including a Japanese Food Village headlined by Masterchef winner Adam Liaw, curated to feature a great range of traditional Japanese flavours inspired by the country’s many different prefectures.

“Cherry Blossom time is the most beautiful time of year, and Auburn’s Japanese Botanic Garden is the best place in Sydney to see them in all their glory”, offered Liaw. “The Sydney Cherry Blossom Festival is a favourite with my family every year, we never miss it. And this year I’m really excited to be par of the line-up of an event we love so much.”

Origami and arts workshops will feature throughout the festival alongside traditional Japanese entertainment on the dedicated Kyoto stage, ranging from Taiko and Koto to Shakuhachi performances. Elsewhere the park will play host to the Stadium Sumo, where competitors will battle it out for the Sakura Cup with special guests being ex-professionals Minaminoshima and Hoshihikari.

J-pop will feature heavily on the soundtrack, presented by a line up led by Japanese DJ Teddyloid, who will be making his way to Auburn following appearances at Ultra Music Festival and New York Comic Con.

Depending on the events, some days will feature ticketed entry. Click HERE for a full schedule and entry details.

Sydney Cherry Blossom Festival

Where: Japanese Botanic Gardens, Auburn
When: Friday 18th – Sunday 27th August

Image: Kristina Paukshtite.


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Chris Singh

Chris Singh is the Deputy-Editor-At-Large of the AU review, loves writing about travel and hospitality, and is partial to a perfectly textured octopus. You can reach him on Instagram: @chrisdsingh.

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