22 classic sightseeing spots in Hokkaido

Hokkaido is one of the most attractive regions in Japan and is popular among both domestic and international tourists. With its vast land, rich nature, and gourmet food, Hokkaido has many attractions that will make you want to visit again and again. In this issue, we will introduce 22 classic spots in each area that you must visit on your trip to Hokkaido!


Standard tourist attractions in the Sapporo area

Sapporo, the central area of Hokkaido, is easily accessible from New Chitose Airport, and trains and subways are very convenient. The area around Sapporo Station is home to large-scale commercial facilities as well as lush green nature spots where visitors can get in touch with the nature that is typical of Hokkaido.

Sapporo Clock Tower (札幌市時計台)

Built in 1878, the Sapporo Clock Tower is a historical landmark and a symbol of Sapporo. Designated as a National Important Cultural Property, it is the oldest clock tower in Japan and continues to tick away the time.

Sapporo TV Tower (さっぽろテレビ塔)

The Sapporo TV Tower is an iconic tourist attraction in Sapporo, located at the eastern end of Odori Park. From the observatory, visitors can enjoy the lush greenery of Odori Park. At night, the tower is illuminated, offering a different view from the daytime.

Odori Park(大通り公園)

Odori Park is the site of various events throughout the year, including the Sapporo Snow Festival and the YOSAKOI Soran Festival. Odori Park, with its beautiful flowerbeds and lawns, is a place for citizens to relax and feel nature even though it is located in the center of Sapporo.

Shiroi Koibito Park (白い恋人パーク)

Shiroi Koibito” is a well-loved souvenir of Hokkaido. At Shiroi Koibito Park, visitors can observe the production process of Shiroi Koibito and enjoy making their own original sweets. There are also limited edition products that can only be purchased here, so it is recommended to buy them as souvenirs.

Maruyama Zoo(円山動物園)

Maruyama Zoo is where you can meet polar bears, Ezo deer, wolves, and other animals unique to Hokkaido. Admission is reasonable and the zoo is conveniently accessible from Sapporo Station, so feel free to visit with your family or friends.

Jozankei Onsen(定山渓温泉)

Jozankei Onsen is a hot spring resort rich in nature that can be reached in about an hour from Sapporo Station. Famous for its beautiful scenery, Jozankei offers beautiful seasonal views such as Futami Suspension Bridge, Shiraito Falls, and Yunotaki Falls. There are also a variety of hands-on activities such as rafting, canoeing, and other water sports that allow visitors to enjoy nature at their leisure.

Hakodate area’s standard tourist attractions

Located in the south of Hokkaido, Hakodate can be reached from Tokyo not only by air but also by Shinkansen(bullet train). Since tourist attractions are concentrated in a small area, it is possible to visit various places in a single day.

Mt. Hakodate(函館山)

The night view from Mt. Hakodate is one of the most spectacular night views in Japan as well as Hokkaido. The best way to climb Mount Hakodate is by ropeway. Hakodate. The ropeway will take you from the foot of the mountain to the top in a matter of minutes. From the observation deck, visitors can enjoy a spectacular view of the port city of Hakodate.

Goryokaku Park(五稜郭公園)

A lush green park with a distinctive star shape. In spring, it is a nationally famous spot for cherry blossoms. Goryokaku Tower is also located near the park, and from the observation space you can actually see the star shape of Goryokaku Park.

Kanamori Red Brick Warehouse (金森赤レンガ倉庫)

Kanamori Red Brick Warehouse is a great tourist spot for selecting souvenirs, as it has a wide variety of stores selling sundries, foods, sweets, and other items. The brick buildings and cobblestone streets create a cute retro atmosphere. With the sea stretching out before your eyes, you can enjoy the atmosphere of a port town.

Hakodate Asaichi (Hakodate Morning Market)(函館朝市)

The market is located a minute walk from Hakodate Station. The market opens early in the morning and offers delicious seafood from Hokkaido. The market is lined with many restaurants and souvenir shops, and visitors can enjoy the lively market atmosphere from morning.

Onuma Quasi-National Park(大沼国定公園)

Onuma National Park is a natural park with an area of approximately 9,000 hectares that has been selected as one of the three most scenic spots in New Japan. Visitors can view the rich natural scenery of Onuma during each of the four seasons while riding on a sightseeing boat. You can also go fishing for wakasagi (apanese pond smelt) in winter, making it a memorable experience no matter what season you visit.

Yunokawa Onsen(湯の川温泉)

Yunokawa Onsen is an elegant hot spring resort that tells a story of its long history. It is the closest hot spring resort to the airport in Japan, only 5 minutes by car from Hakodate Airport, making it very convenient and attracting many tourists. The smooth and pleasant water has a reputation for not cooling down easily, and is said to be “hot water for beautiful skin.

Standard sightseeing spots in Asahikawa, Furano, and Biei area

Asahiyama Zoo(旭山動物園)

Asahiyama Zoo is located in Asahikawa City and is renowned as the most popular zoo in Japan. The zoo is symbolic of animals moving freely and spontaneously, and you can even see cute penguins taking a walk. The zoo is full of ingenious exhibits that allow visitors to see the animals from various angles, making it a zoo that you will want to visit again and again.

Shikisai-no-Oka (四季彩の丘)

At “Shikisai-no-Oka” in Biei-cho, you can enjoy a landscape that looks as if it were carpeted with brightly colored flowers. You can stroll around the large flower garden on foot, but since the site is so large, we recommend taking a ride called the Norokko-go or a cart.

Blue Pond (青い池)

Blue Pond is located in Biei-cho.Blue Pond is a popular sightseeing spot in Biei-cho, where the mysterious scene of blue-white water and dead birch forests woven by nature is a sight to behold. The coloring changes slightly depending on the angle of view, the season, and the weather, so you will have to wait until the day of your visit to see what color it will look like.

Farm Tomita(ファーム富田)

Farm Tomita, famous for its lavender fields, is a sightseeing farm located in Furano Town. The spacious garden has many kinds of flower gardens, and visitors can enjoy seasonal flowers other than lavender. The best time to see the lavender is in July, when the entire slope is covered with purple lavender, a very beautiful sight.

Sightseeing Spots in Otaru and Yoichi Area

The Otaru and Yoichi areas are conveniently accessible from Sapporo in about an hour by train. Otaru is especially popular for its retro port town atmosphere and attracts many tourists. There is also a market near the station, where you can try Hokkaido’s famous Kaisendon.

Otaru Canal(小樽運河)

Otaru Canal(小樽運河)

Once a prosperous trading center, this area is now a popular retro townscape. Illuminated by gentle light at night, the canalside creates a fantastic atmosphere. Cafes, galleries, and souvenir stores abound in the surrounding area, allowing visitors to enjoy Otaru’s art, culture, and gastronomy.

Otaru Orgel Doh (小樽オルゴール堂)

Otaru Orgel Doh (小樽オルゴール堂)
Otaru Orgel Doh (小樽オルゴール堂)

Otaru Orgel Doh, with its retro architecture and steam-powered steam clock, is a specialty music box store. 1912, the building has a Western-style exterior, and the interior is reminiscent of somewhere not in Japan.

Otaru triangle market(小樽三角市場)

Otaru triangle market(小樽三角市場)
Otaru triangle market(小樽三角市場)

OtaruTriangle Market is a market with excellent accessibility, just a one-minute walk from Otaru Station. The market is named “Triangle Market” because of the triangular shape of its land and roof. The long and narrow aisles are lined with stores, including fresh fish stores, grocery stores, and eateries, where you can enjoy set meals and Kaisendon made with fresh seafood and seasonal ingredients.

Yoichi Distillery (余市蒸溜所)

Nikka Whiskey Yoichi Distillery(ニッカウヰスキー 余市蒸留所)

The Yoichi Whiskey Distillery is located 30 minutes by train from Otaru. The founder, Masataka Taketsuru, is famous as the first Japanese to learn the art of whiskey production in Scotland. If you apply for a reservation for a guided tour, you can learn the depth of the whisky world.

Toya and Noboribetsu Area Attractions

This area is rich in nature and is home to some of Hokkaido’s most famous hot spring resorts. Visitors can enjoy outdoor activities in summer and autumn foliage in fall, so we recommend that you plan to take a relaxing rest in a hot spring after having fun to the fullest.

Lake Toya(洞爺湖)

Lake Toya (洞爺湖)

Lake Toya offers beautiful natural scenery in all four seasons, and in summer, visitors can enjoy activities such as canoeing and kayaking. There are also many hot spring resorts and hotels nearby that offer views of Lake Toya, making it a perfect spot for refreshment.

Noboribetsu Onsen(登別温泉)

Noboribetsu Onsen(登別温泉)
Noboribetsu Onsen(登別温泉)

Noboribetsu Onsen, one of Hokkaido’s representative hot spring resorts, is one of the “Three Major Hot Spring Villages of Hokkaido” and is popular nationwide. You can experience the energy of nature at Lake Toya, which was the focus of attention during the “G8 Hokkaido Toyako Summit,” as well as at Mt. Be sure to visit Cape Erimo, the farthest cape in the world.

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