TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- Photographer Josh Ellis has created a Google map that shows 66 locations where cherry blossoms or in Japanese "Sakura" can be found in Taiwan.
On his website goteamjosh, Ellis posted a Google map which includes the geographic location and the name in English and Chinese where Sakura cherry blossoms can be found in various locations around Taiwan. The map includes violet-colored flowers, which symbolize locations where cherry blossoms can be seen and include a brief description of the locale, and yellow hearts, which mark his favorite cherry blossom viewing locations.
There are a number of varieties of cherry blossoms that can be seen in Taiwan at different periods during the spring, including Taiwan cherry (山櫻花), Showa cherry (昭和櫻), Yae-Zakura (double-layer) cherry (八重櫻), Yoshino cherry (吉野櫻), and Fuji cherry (寒櫻).
Taiwan cherry (山櫻花)
Taiwan cherry flowers are indigenous to the island and as such, are the most common variety on the island. They are a dark shade of pink and bloom between late January to March.
Taiwan cherries (山櫻花) at Shanguang temple in Taipei. (Travel Taipei Facebook page)
Showa cherry (昭和櫻)
A light hue of pink than the Taiwan cherry, a good opportunity to view the Showa cherry is the Yangmingshan Flower festival, which is held in the first quarter of the year. Other varieties of cherry can be seen during the festival as well, such as Yoshino and Yae-Zakura. The Showa cherries typically bloom from February to March.
昭和櫻 Showa cherry. (Travel Taipei Facebook page)
Yoshino cherry (吉野櫻)
Known for their light light pink color, Yoshino cherries were introduced during the Japanese colonial era from Yoshino District in Japan and can now be seen in many parts of Taiwan. The trees usually bloom from mid March to late April.
The Alishan Cherry Blossom Festival is one of Taiwan’s most popular flower festivals as the area is covered by more than 19,000 cherry trees, and about 18,000 of them are Yoshino cherry trees making Alishan the only and the largest area of Yoshino cherry trees in Taiwan.
Yoshino cherry (吉野櫻). (Taipei City Government website)
Yae-Zakura cherry (八重櫻)
The distinctive feature of the Yae-Zakura or double-layer cherry blossoms is that they have double layers of petals that range from light to a dark pink. The flowers can best be seen from February to March.
Yae-Zakura cherry (八重櫻). (Nantou Forestry Bureau)
Fuji cherry (寒櫻)
The flowers of the the Fuji cherry are a pure white that eventually can develop pink blushing as they age. They range from February to March
Fuji cherry (寒櫻). (Travel Taipei website)
Map created by Josh Ellis.
Another good resource that lists locations where cherry blossoms and other varieties of flowers can be seen in Taipei is flowers.taipei, which is maintained by the Taipei City Government.