After the cold winter seeing spring flowers blossom is like a miracle. Starting from April, one of the first intensely blossoming months, nature is bursting into bloom and so the feelings are. Inspired by the first sunshine and cheerful birds chirping, we found ourselves in a cheesy mood and we scoured the world over for the TOTALLY ROMANTIC trips you can enjoy with your significant other in the springtime.
Where the pale pink Cherry Blossoms grow…
You’ve probably heard of the stunning Japanese Cherry Blossom by now, including their famous locations like Miharu Takizakura (Fukushima), Yamataka Jindai Zakura (Yamanashi), One Dani Usuzumi Zakura (Gifu), Hirosaki Park (Aomori), Takato Castle Site Park (Nagano) or the last but not least – Mt. Yoshino (Nara). We are sure that nobody doubts about how gorgeous these Cherry Blossom locations are. But did you know that you can enjoy yet still charming Cherry Blossoms in Washington, D.C. or in Vancouver, in British Columbia? Not only you can gather beneath the downy blossoms of cherry trees in there, but also join the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival, including Petal Mat Picnic and Bike the Blossom Activities!
Purple haze: Crocuses in the Tatra Mountains, Poland
Crocuses are among first flowers to bloom in the spring since they have an unusual ability to thrive in the late winter. It’s not uncommon to see early flowering through a light late snowfall. Thousands of tiny crocuses bloom on the Polish Tatras clearings, and April is definitely the best time to admire meadows overflowing with these purple flowers.
Where to find crocuses in the Tatras?
Crocuses begin to bloom every year in several areas of the Tatra Mountains up to an altitude of 1600 m above sea level. Due to differences in altitude and temperature, blooming schedules vary, which lengthen the blooming cycles. You will discover crocuses in the Olczyska Glade or the Pisana Glade, in the Gorce Mountains, but most of all – along the most fabulous and the longest valley in the Polish Tatra Mountains – the Chochołowska Valley.
How to get to the Chochołowska Valley?
This valley offers plenty of hiking opportunities, provided, of course that you are properly prepared for the late winter conditions. Warm clothing and waterproof shoes are the bare minimum. You need to be aware of the dangers of avalanches in the spring, so the safest option is to hire a professional guide to safely show you around. There are several ways to reach the blooming Chochołowska Valley. At the entryway of the Siwa Pass (the beginning of the Chochołowska Valley) there is a car park with mountain bike rentals (the bikes can be returned at a convenient shelter in the Chochołowska Valley). If you would like to add some genuine Slavic flavor to your hiking experience, you can enjoy less strenuous horse and carriage excursions. Hiking from the Siwa Pass to the Chochołowska Valley will take you around 2 hours if you choose a green route.
Passing by the mysterious Tatra’s Caves and reaching the Chochołowska Valley
Before you reach the famous Chochołowska Valley you will travel through the Huciska Pass, where the caves known as Zbójecka Dziura, Rybia, Mała and the Upper Chochołowska Gate cut in between the slopes of Bobrowiec and Kominiarski Wierch Mountains. As you continue hiking along the green route you will eventually reach the fabulous Purple Hill of the vast Chochołowska Valley that encompasses 35 square km and stretches a breathtaking 10 km in length. Western Tatras is famous for the richness of the wildlife and uniqueness of its vegetation.
The Chochołowska Valley’s beauty is striking. Not only will you be surrounded by purple carpets of crocuses – but also 60 colorful shepherd huts since the area used to be one of the major sheep rearing centers. Nowadays, most of the huts are well-preserved historical monuments which nestle in the landscape and provide you the opportunity to purchase genuine sheep’s products. One of the huts was converted into the Chapel of St. John the Baptist, which is a known theatrical set for many Polish movies and where Holy Masses are held in the summer season.
Other popular “crocus routes” include trips to Grześ and Rakoń in the Western Tatras, as well as the Iwaniacka pass near the shelter on Hala Ornak.
Want to be updated when the first crocuses begin to bloom?
This information can be found in the shelter at the Chochołowska Valley via the phone or on the Internet. You can also check the Tatras sites daily (tpn.pl). Although the crocus blooming season is a bit different every year, the safest visits should take place in mid-April, even though some of crocuses often thrive till the beginning of May, when the risk of avalanches increase. Again, I recommend you plan to enjoy the full bloom of majestic purple carpets in April.
Orange mosaic: Poppies in the Antelope Valley, California, the U.S
Its orange fields are the most consistent poppy-bearing lands in the entire California, but you will also find there a mosaic of owl’s clover, lupine, goldfield and cream cups. If you want to get an eyeful of stunning colors and fragrance, the expansive fields of the Antelope Valley is a place to go.
Located at an elevation of 2600 to 3000 feet in the western Mojave Desert, the Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve brings to life orange kingdom of poppies with intense colors and scents that will make your head spinning. The wildflower season lasts from mid-February through late May, however the peak of poppy bloom happens usually in mid-April.
Hike and explore across 8 miles of the flowery trails with their gentle rolling hills or just sit on the benches to admire birds gliding overhead. The wildlife of the Antelope Valley with its lizards, gopher snakes, rattlesnakes, coyote or bobcat will amaze you, so get your cameras ready. One thing you need to be aware of though – be careful as the burrows around the trails may house mice, kangaroo rats or even scorpions. Remember to keep moving rather than stretching your legs sitting on the ground.
Rattlesnakes in fields
Be prepare to meet some Mojave green rattlesnakes who like zipping across the trails during the daytime. They generally avoid a confrontation, but might react aggressively once startled or threatened. Do not run blankly into the fields among the poppies outside the reserve to get the perfect selfie, because that might result in a bite. Watch where you step and walk within park boundaries. Stay on the trail and do not pick the wildflowers.
It might get windy
In the spring the weather changes from hour to hour, so you’d better bring some warm clothes and watch closely weather reports for general conditions using this weather station . Also, keep in mind that the valley is located in the desert so the air can get very dry. A nice water supply will be needed.
Into the blue: Bluebonnets of Texas, the U.S
The springtime in Texas can be magical too, with its roadsides blanketed in a sea of bluebonnets. You can see them on many of the Texas roads, but Texas Hill Country Wildflower Trail has by far the most splendid views. See the map.
Burnet, Fredericksburg, Llano and San Saba celebrate bluebonnet festivals each year. Burnet was even officially recognized as the “Bluebonnet Capital of Texas”! Other famous for bluebonnets locations can be found in the Washington County’s cities like Brenham, Chapell Hill or Independence.
The famous Willow Loop
If you want to take in amazing sights of bluebonnets, sunflowers or black-eyed Susans check out the acclaimed Willow City Loop located just outside of Fredericksburg. Its jagged cliffs, low lying meadows and meandering streams are the most spectacular views during a Wildflower Season (March – May), so go ahead and discover the natural beauty of this region in the upcoming weeks!
The loop is privately owned
Do not park your car on or walk through the Wildflower fields of the Willow Loop. Try to keep moving along the narrow roadway of the Willow City, so its residents can access their driveways. When you feel tired, stop at one of the bars along the way to try out some local burgers and have some rest before you dive into the blue again.
Where to search for the best blue spots
Generally bluebonnets bloom from mid-March until mid-April, starting from the southern parts of Texas like Houston or San Antonio and moving to the north to Austin, the Hill Country and Waco. Lastly, you can admire the blue beauties in the Dallas-Forth Worth in mid-April. If you live closer to the Dallas-Forth Worth another good option for you might be Ennis, called the Bluebonnet Trails Capitol of Texas with its over 40 miles of mapped driving Bluebonnet Trails. You can also enjoy there 2 days full of Arts and Crafts, Automobile Shows, Children’s Activities and Exciting Live Music events during the Bluebonnet Trails Festival, on April 18-19. To check out where are the bluebonnets at any given time, see the Texas DOT’S (department of transportation) Hotline via their website
On a flowery mission…
Blossoming flowers are the Spring signatures, but due to their changeable nature, they are also the hardest to capture! Join us in a mission of diving into the wildlife and capture its awaking, but still well-hidden pearls. We encourage you to share these moments with us and expand our “blossoming guide”, and get ready to participate in our upcoming blossoming contest for the chance of winning a Kindle HD7! Check our forums & Facebook FanPage for more details later this week!