In late August 2018, the Sydney Cherry Blossom Festival will return to Auburn Botanic Gardens in Sydney’s western suburbs. The festival, held at the gardens annually, is a celebration of Japanese culture with a schedule of events and activities coinciding with the brief blooming of the Cherry Blossoms in Sydney at the end of winter.

The festival offers events for all ages including in previous years Japanese food stalls and food from other Asian cuisines (Thai, Korean, Vietnamese), sake and Asahi stalls for over 18s, Japanese anime and live action films, cooking demonstrations, Sumo wrestling, Taiko drumming, Koto and Shakuhachi performances, cosplay events, and silent discos. In 2017, Auburn Arts Studio ran Origami workshops in conjunction with the festival, and local Peacock Gallery featured kimono displays.

All-year round, Auburn Botanic Gardens is a beautiful spot to visit – with its delicate Japanese garden, and adjoining fauna reserve and aviary. The gardens offer the perfect setting for a picnic or day out in the park for anyone, with BBQ areas and sprawling grass available.

Entry to the gardens in free for local residents of Auburn (be prepared to provide proof of residency) and for children and under 16s at all times. For all others, entry on weekdays is free, with Auburn Botanic Gardens only charging $4 on weekends, school holidays and public holidays. During the Cherry Blossom Festival, entry is $5.

Keep an eye on Cumberland Council’s website for updates on the 2018 Sydney Cherry Blossom Festival.