Exploring Sapporo: A Journey Through Hokkaido’s Winter Capital

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Welcome to the enchanting city of Sapporo, a winter wonderland nestled in Hokkaido.

Known for its breathtaking snowscapes, Sapporo combines urban elegance with the wild beauty of northern Japan.

This city is not just a destination; it’s an experience filled with vibrant festivals, exquisite gastronomy, and picturesque landscapes. As we delve into Sapporo’s top attractions, you’ll discover why this city captivates the hearts of all who visit.

From Haneda Airport to New Chitose Airport, it takes approximately 1 hour and 35 minutes.
With a low-cost carrier, round-trip fares start from around $100.


The Serene Beauty of Moerenuma Park(モエレ沼公園)

At Moerenuma Park, every season paints a new masterpiece.

In winter, the park is a canvas of pure white snow, offering activities like cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.

Summer reveals a lush oasis, ideal for picnics and leisurely strolls among art installations that blend seamlessly with nature.

The park’s design is a harmonious blend of art, architecture, and nature, embodying the spirit of Sapporo’s environmental consciousness.

It’s a vast park, but walking around it is quite pleasant, and renting a bicycle at the entrance is also a great option. It’s a recommended spot where you can fully enjoy the blue sky, green grass, and the forest’s verdure on a sunny day. It’s suitable for a variety of people, from families enjoying picnics to couples on dates. The soft serve ice cream is delicious.

In summer, there’s also a fireworks festival. The fountains and the restaurants inside are very good too. Lunch at L’enfant Qui Rêve is fantastic!

Moerenuma Park

Sapporo’s Iconic Clock Tower(札幌時計台)

The Clock Tower, a beloved symbol of Sapporo, stands as a reminder of the city’s journey through time. Its simple yet elegant architecture is a stark contrast to the modern skyline. Inside, a museum tells the tale of Sapporo’s development, making the tower more than just a photo opportunity – it’s a key to understanding the city’s roots.

In the midst of the urban streetscape, there’s a place that seems like a solitary space where time has stopped. The glass windows in the building are handmade from the Meiji and Taisho periods, notable for their distortions, which give a sense of history. On the second floor, there’s a piano, and you can play it, but only at designated times.

 Sapporo’s Iconic Clock Tower

The Lively Atmosphere of Susukino(すすきの)

Susukino buzzes with energy, embodying the lively spirit of Sapporo’s nightlife. From neon-lit streets lined with diverse eateries to lively bars and clubs, Susukino is where the city’s heart beats strongest. During the Snow Festival, this area transforms into a magical land of ice, with sculptures that light up the winter night.

Susukino, the largest entertainment district north of the Kanto region, has seen a surge in hotel construction in recent years. As a result, tourists tend to stay in Susukino, enjoying food and drinks late into the night during their visit. In Ramen Yokocho, you can try various types of ramen, including Hokkaido ramen, known for its miso flavor.

Susukino restaurant coupon information site

Savoring Flavors at Nijo Market(二条市場)

Nijo Market is a feast for the senses. The aroma of fresh seafood, the bustling sound of vendors, and the sight of colorful produce provide an authentic taste of Hokkaido’s culinary landscape.

If you’re visiting the Nijo Market, it’s definitely worth waking up early for breakfast. Seafood is the recommended choice. The market is full of shops offering breakfasts made with freshly sourced seafood from that day. Some shops even offer special, limited-quantity menus.

Besides seafood bowls and sushi, many people also like to enjoy their favorite sashimi or try something other than seafood. In such cases, consider getting a takeaway. This way, you can enjoy as much of what you like as you want. You can take it back to your hotel to savor it slowly or move to a nearby park to eat, giving you more flexibility with time and location.

Be sure to try the popular Hokke set meal among Japanese people!
The Hokke in Tokyo is completely different in both size and taste!

Welcome to SAPPORO

It’s a popular spot for breakfast, so there’s especially a long queue on weekends. It’s better to wake up early and go. The food is very delicious and the atmosphere is top-notch, but the prices are accordingly high.

The Panoramic Views from Mt. Moiwa(もいわ山)

Mount Moiwa located near the center of Sapporo City with an elevation of 531 meters. It is counted among Japan’s new three great night views, and the panoramic night view from its observatory is extremely popular. The mountain is bustling with hikers, especially on weekends during the summer.

The forest on the northern side of Mount Moiwa is home to a primeval forest designated as a natural monument by the government. It displays a variety of expressions through the changing seasons. In spring, as the trees bud, the area becomes vibrant with a multitude of wildflowers blooming in various colors. In summer, you can encounter a wide range of flora, with around 450 species growing, accompanied by the sound of cicadas. During the autumn, the mountain is a spectacle of autumn leaves and flocks of starlings, while in winter, it becomes a haven for owls, offering plenty of natural beauty that enriches the soul.

Sapporo Mt. Moiwa Ropeway

Exploring the Hokkaido University Campus(北海道大学キャンパス)

The Hokkaido University campus is an oasis of tranquility and beauty. Its iconic Gingko Avenue, particularly stunning in autumn, creates a golden tunnel of leaves. The campus is not just for students; it’s a space where history, nature, and academia intertwine, inviting everyone to explore its charming pathways.

The Sapporo Beer Museum: A Toast to Tradition(サッポロビール博物館)

Delve into the rich brewing history of Japan at the Sapporo Beer Museum. This museum, housed in a charming brick building, is more than just about beer; it’s about the culture and traditions that shaped Sapporo. Tasting sessions offer a delightful experience, pairing education with enjoyment.

In the three beer halls where Sapporo beer is served, there is a wide variety of dishes featuring Genghis Khan (lamb grill), crab, and fresh wild ingredients from Hokkaido.

Sapporo Beer Museum

Buses run from Sapporo city, making it convenient. Enjoying a beer with the pleasant breeze is fantastic, and you can also savor some delicious Jingisukan (grilled mutton).

Sapporo Beer Garden

Odori Park: The Heart of Sapporo’s Festivals(大通り公園)

Odori Park is the cultural epicenter of Sapporo. It’s a versatile space that transforms with the seasons, hosting the renowned Snow Festival in winter and becoming a lush, green haven in summer. The park is a unifying thread in the city’s fabric, bringing people together for celebration and relaxation.

Outside of special events, it’s just an ordinary park. Inside the TV tower, there’s a small souvenir shop. It’s fun when there are events or festivals, and food stalls are set up.

Es Con Field Hokkaido: A New Era for the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters(エスコンフィールド)

Es Con Field Hokkaido, opened in 2023, is the latest home stadium for the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters, one of Japan’s professional baseball teams. Located in Kitahiroshima, Hokkaido, this modern stadium boasts a capacity of 35,000 spectators and features impressive dimensions with the left field measuring 97 meters (318 feet), the right field at 99 meters (325 feet), and the center field extending to 121 meters (397 feet).

Owned and operated by Nippon Ham, Es Con Field Hokkaido is noted for being the newest and one of the most advanced ballparks in Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB). The stadium not only enhances the game-day experience for fans but also signifies the growing prominence of baseball in Hokkaido, offering a dedicated space for the sport’s development and enjoyment.

Although it’s not in Sapporo city, I included it because it’s my favorite stadium. It’s enjoyable not only during baseball games but also when there are none. The eateries inside the stadium offer authentic tastes of Hokkaido, and they are so good that some people come here just to enjoy a drink.

 Es Con Field Hokkaido

Sapporo, a city of contrasts and harmonies, invites you to immerse yourself in its unique blend of culture, history, and nature. Every corner of this city tells a story, every street has its melody, and every experience leaves a lasting imprint. Sapporo is more than just a destination; it’s a journey through the heart of Hokkaido.

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