4 things to experience in Hokkaido in spring! Discover the best spots to visit during this season based on the weather!

Hokkaido in spring attracts travelers from all over the world with its mild climate, beautiful nature, and events that allow visitors to experience Japanese culture as well. It is the best travel season because it is very pleasant.

This article details the highlights of spring travel, from a description of the weather and clothing for spring travel to the best places to visit in Hokkaido in spring.


Hokkaido in Spring

Sapporo Maruyama Park Cherry Blossoms


Hokkaido in spring (March through May) gradually begins to warm up, but temperatures fluctuate widely, especially during the change of seasons. In May, the temperature rises further and the days are pleasant, but the mornings and evenings are often chilly, so care should be taken in what you wear.

Things to Do

There are many places to see in Hokkaido in spring. In particular, Goryokaku Park in Hakodate and Maruyama Park in Sapporo are famous for their beautiful cherry blossoms, which bloom with the arrival of spring. In Furano and Biei, the fresh greenery spreading across the vast hills is beautiful and ideal for driving and cycling.


In Hokkaido in spring, there are still many cold days; winter clothes are the norm in March, but layered styles are recommended through April and May to cope with the temperature difference between day and night. Try to dress for the cold temperature differences by combining a light down jacket, spring coat, long-sleeved shirt, and cardigan or sweater. Also, remember to carry a folding umbrella because of the changeable weather.

Things to do in Hokkaido in Spring

Enjoy the blooming of cherry blossoms at the end of spring

Cherry blossoms in Goryokaku Park, Hakodate(函館 五稜郭公園の桜)

Spring in Hokkaido is a time when the harsh cold gradually eases and the weather gradually warms up, especially during the daytime. However, spring arrives later in Hokkaido than in other parts of Japan, with the cherry blossoms usually blooming around early May. If you are planning to stay in Japan for an extended period of time during this period, it is recommended that you move from the south to the north of Japan to enjoy your trip in time for the cherry blossoms to bloom.

There are many cherry blossom viewing spots in Hokkaido. Maruyama Park in Sapporo is crowded with families and groups enjoying cherry blossom viewing. Goryokaku Park in Hakodate is a nationally famous cherry blossom viewing spot. The entire star-shaped Goryokaku Park is filled with cherry blossoms.

Enjoy seasonal ingredients

Hokkaido is famous for its delicious foods in spring, summer, fall, and winter. Spring is the best time to experience this regional food culture, as it is the season when vegetables as well as seafood grow to their best. Cafes and restaurants also offer springtime sweet menus and other seasonal delicacies.

Spring Vegetables

wild vegetable(山菜)

In spring, colorful vegetables begin to be harvested from the land that has been covered with snow during the long winter months. Typical spring vegetables include asparagus, bamboo shoots, and wild vegetables (Sansasi). Wild vegetables are plants that grow wild in the mountains and fields, such as butterbur sprouts and udo, which are well-known. Sansai have a unique flavor and aroma, and are often eaten as tempura.

Spring Seafood

hair crab (毛ガニ)

Hokkaido is surrounded by rich seas, and many seafood products are in season, especially in spring. Popular foods such as scallops, sea urchins, and crabs are also in season in spring. Since the flavor is more concentrated than usual, you will enjoy them more when served raw, as sashimi or sushi.

Spring Sweets

Spring Limited Sweets

Restaurants and eateries in Hokkaido offer a number of limited-edition menus that can only be enjoyed in spring. Mainly desserts using strawberries and cherry blossom-flavored drinks are sold, and visitors can enjoy a menu of pink, brightly colored sweets.

Participate in seasonal flower events

Sapporo Lilac Festival(さっぽろライラックまつり)

Spring in Hokkaido is filled with a variety of festivals and events, and festivals themed around various spring flowers are held in various locations. The Sapporo Lilac Festival is held in May to coincide with the season of the lilac, Sapporo’s symbolic tree with beautiful purple flowers.

Takikawa Canola Flower Festival (たきかわ菜の花まつり)

Takikawa City also hosts the “Takikawa Canola Flower Festival,” and the sight of yellow rape blossoms blooming all over the city is truly a spectacular sight only available during this time of year. At the festival site, there are food stalls and kitchen cars where you can enjoy Hokkaido’s gourmet food, so there are many ways to enjoy the festival.

Refresh yourself with activities


Spring in Hokkaido is pleasant and ideal for light exercise and activities. One of the best ways to enjoy the wilderness, especially after the snow melts, is hiking and trekking.

In the spring, flowers begin to bloom in the fields and you will be soothed by the lush natural scenery. You may even have encounters with wild birds and animals while walking. Mount Hakodate, a famous sightseeing spot, has a ropeway, but there is also a climbing course, so those who are confident in their physical strength or who want to feel more in touch with nature are recommended to walk up the mountain.

Hokkaido in March

The temperature in Hokkaido in March is low, often minus and snowing. This is the last time to enjoy winter sports such as skiing and skating, so it is the last time to enjoy winter events.

Hokkaido in April

It is the time of year when you gradually feel the arrival of spring, but in Hokkaido, even in April, the temperature remains cold and coats are necessary. The cherry blossom season in Hokkaido usually starts in late April and lasts until early May, when the area becomes crowded with locals and tourists.

Hokkaido in May

It is warm during the daytime, but the mornings and evenings often still feel chilly. Spring events and festivals are held in many places. This is also the time when many people from Japan visit Hokkaido for sightseeing during Golden Week (a long vacation from the end of April to the beginning of May).

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