Where to go in the West to see the season in full bloom

Tulips and Balloons

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You could go chasing super blooms, but hitting up a flower festival is a surefire way to snag a front row to spring’s prettiest blossoms. With mild, maritime-influenced weather, the coastal states host most of the early festivals. (Don’t worry, mountain regions; we see you. Yours come a little later in the season.) Here are a few you won’t want to miss. 

Coachella Valley Wildflower Festival 

This event is a good alternative to the Instagrammed-to-death Anza-Borrego Desert super bloom (seriously impacted by overtourism). The Coachella Valley festival even has live music to go with the sweeping expanse of wildflowers. March 7.

Wooden Shoe Tulip Festival

This tulip fest in Woodburn, Oregon, draws crowds from around the world. Yes, Skagit Valley Tulip Festival is bigger, but insiders know Woodburn is also the source of the best Mexican food in Oregon. March 20-May 3.

Lindsay Orange Blossom Festival

Featuring a parade, carnival, and even a bake-off, the Lindsay Orange Blossom Festival started in Lindsay, California, in 1932. The festival was initiated as a way to use community togetherness (and aromatherapy) to combat the ennui of the Great Depression. March 28-April 4.

Daffodil Festival

Portland has its Rose Festival, and Puyallup, Washington, has its own beloved Daffodil Festival, complete with a parade of daffodil-laden floatsApril 4 for parade; Spring Fair is April 16-19.

Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival

A celebration of Japanese and Japanese-American culture of Northern California (and the blooming cherry trees) for 50+ years, the Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival echoes the celebrations of sakura festivals in Japan, complete with a parade and traditional performancesApril 11-12, 18-19.

California Poppy Festival 

This event in Lancaster, California, celebrates Earth Day and the bloom of California’s state flower with multiple stages of live music and activities for kids. April 18-19.

Hulda Klager Lilac Days 

In Woodland, Washington, held at the historic home of amateur horticulturist Hulda Klager, this festival is a must-see for lilac lovers and history buffs alike. April 18 – May 10.