Discover the culinary delights of spring in Japan during your campervan adventure across the nation. Japan comes to life in the spring, so it’s no surprise that there is a bounty of springtime delicacies to sample at this time of year. Whether you’re looking for something sweet like a sakura-flavoured mochi or fancy a savoury dish like spring cabbage, this time of year offers some of the best food and drink Japan has to offer. To get the most from your culinary adventure in Japan, try to start your journey from the south before heading north and chasing the sakura blossoms!

Sampling Japan’s Spring Delicacies on a Campervan Adventure

A campervan adventure across Japan is a wonderful experience that brings you closer to the natural beauty and rich cultural heritage on offer here. If you travel to this beautiful country during the spring months, you’ll be in for quite a treat as the cherry blossoms, known as sakura, cover the landscape in a brilliant pink hue. Springtime is also a fantastic time to experience Japan’s culinary delights, with many unique treats available only at this time of year. So in this article, we’ll learn about sampling Japan’s spring delicacies on a campervan adventure.

Planning Your Route

Planning your campervan Japan route is the first step to enjoying the spring delicacies found here. Spring in Japan is synonymous with cherry blossoms, so consider starting your adventure in the southern regions of Japan before heading northward. This route will allow you to witness the beauty of Sakura and sample regional specialities at the peak of their freshness.

Must-Try Spring Delicacies

Japan has a wide selection of food that is either exclusive to or best during springtime. So if you’re having a spring road trip, Japan has lots of delicious and unique food to sample at this time of year.

Sakura-Flavoured Treats

Spring in Japan is all about cherry blossoms, which also extends to the food. Look out for sakura-flavored delicacies like mochi, ice cream, and lattes. These treats are not only beautiful with their soft pink hues but also offer a unique taste that’s mildly sweet with a floral undertone.

Rape Blossom

Another local favourite during the spring months is nanohana, the vibrant yellow rape blossoms. These aesthetically brilliant vegetables are also incredibly healthy and are packed with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Although it is often served as an ohitashi, nanohana works equally well on its own as a pan-fried dish or accompaniment.

Hanami Dango Rice Cakes

Hanami dango rice cakes are deliciously sweet treats that symbolise the cherry blossoms, making them a staple during this time of year. Hanami is the practice of observing the sakura at parties, feasts or large gatherings, which is where this delightful dessert gets its name. Featuring three coloured sweet rice balls on a stick, this sweet represents the pink cherry blossoms, white flowers in full bloom and the green leaves found on the trees.

Plum Food and Drinks

Although the cherry blossoms get most of the attention in Japan during the spring, plum blossoms are the first signs that the season is changing. So take this opportunity to indulge in the various plum food and drink options available at this time of year. You can find potato crisps with pickled plum flavours, plum-flavoured seaweed snacks and, of course, classic pickled plums. There are also loads of jams and syrups available that champion this seasonal flavour. If you fancy a tipple, then plum wine is a deliciously boozy treat that is very popular at this time of year.

Takenoko (Bamboo Shoots)

Spring is the season for bamboo shoots, and you’ll find these tender, earthy vegetables in various dishes throughout Japan. Visit local markets or roadside stands to buy fresh takenoko, which you can cook in your campervan. They’re excellent in rice dishes, stir-fries, or simply boiled and seasoned with soy sauce.

 

Wild Mountain Vegetables

Known as sansai, wild mountain vegetables are a springtime delicacy in Japan. Foraging tours are available in some regions, allowing you to pick your own. Sansai, including ferns, bamboo shoots, and warabi (bracken), are celebrated for their distinctive flavours and are a must-try in tempura or mixed with rice.

Spring Cabbage

Although you can find spring cabbage throughout the year, this vegetable is at its finest during spring. Getting your hands on this leafy green vegetable at this time of year will provide you with a sweeter, crisper flavour that is well worth waiting for. This delicious vegetable is a perfect accompaniment with fried dishes like pork cutlets but works well on its own with a rich dipping sauce, too.

Fresh Seafood

The spring seafood selection becomes irresistible as you near the coast. Look for seasonal catches like sawara (Spanish mackerel) and shirauo (whitebait). These can be enjoyed fresh or in traditional dishes at local eateries, providing a true taste of Japan’s maritime bounty. If you find yourself in the Hyogo Prefecture during spring, keep an eye out for ikanago (Japanese sand lace), marinated in soy sauce, mirin, ginger and sugar.

Enjoy a Culinary Campervan Adventure in Japan This Spring

A campervan adventure in Japan during spring offers a unique blend of visual and culinary experiences. You’ll create delicious and unforgettable memories by planning your route to highlight both natural beauty and regional food specialities. Japan’s spring delicacies, from sakura-flavored treats to fresh seafood, provide a deeper connection to the land and its seasons, making your journey exceptional.

About the Author

Sayuri

I have been travelling by campervan to various areas all over Japan for more than 5 years. My goal is to visit all 47 prefectures in Japan! Just 12 more prefectures to go and I'll have accomplished it! I hope I can share some of information of wonderful places in Japan.

Share this page
Book your trip

Find Your Nearest Travellers Autobarn Location

Tokyo
Japan

Road Trips & Travel Tips

  • Festivals Worth Visiting in Japan
    Read more
  • Local Food Guide: What to Eat on the 10-Day Trip Tokyo – Kyoto – Tokyo
    Read more
  • Rain protection for overnight stay in car | Tips for travelers in JAPAN
    Read more
See all road trips & tips

Our Campervans

...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
Seats up tp 7
...

2-7 People

...

Esky Opt.

...

Chairs Opt.

...

Tent Opt.

...

Gas Cooker Opt.

View Details
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
MOST POPULAR
Seats 2-3 (Front seat) • Sleeps 2-3
...

Microwave

...

Fridge

...

Gas cooker

...

Sink

...

USB

...

Solar panel

View Details
See all campers FOR HIRE