Cherry blossoms, also known as Sakura, are very popular in Japan during spring time. Tourists, young and old, gather for the highly anticipated, centuries-old tradition of Hanami (cherry blossom-viewing).
It felt surreal, as we neared to Mt Ruapehu. The scenery changed from forest brown to shades of white and I was filled with ecstatic happiness. Coming from a country where it's literally summer all year round, to see snow was always on top of my bucket list ever since I was a kid.