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Top 20 Things to Do in Furano: Your Ultimate Guide to Unforgettable Sightseeing, Food, and Shopping

Top 20 Things to Do in Furano: Your Ultimate Guide to Unforgettable Sightseeing, Food, and Shopping

Last updated: 7 July 2023

Explore Furano, the heart of Hokkaido, famed for enchanting flower fields and local delights. Plan your dream trip with essential transport tips and a curated list of top sightseeing spots, delectable foods, and unique shopping experiences. Don't miss out on annual events! Find all you need to know about things to do in Furano here.

Main Photos: Klook

Table of Contents
  1. Charming Furano: Flower Fields, Forests, and Sweet Melons!
  2. Exploring Furano: Main Transportation Options
  3. What to See: 6 Must-Visit Sightseeing Spots in Furano
  4. Indulge in Delicious Delights! 6 Recommended Food Spots in Furano
  5. Bringing Home Wonderful Travel Memories from Four Recommended Shopping Spots in Furano!
  6. Never-ending Fun! 4 Recommended Activities in Furano
  7. Furano's Popular Annual Events
  8. Explore Furano - Hokkaido's Must Visit Beautiful Countryside City!

Charming Furano: Flower Fields, Forests, and Sweet Melons!

Photo: PIXTA
Photo: PIXTA

Situated in northern Hokkaido, Furano city and its neighboring town, Biei, are agricultural tourist hubs that boast a wealth of natural beauty. The vast, open sky and lavender fields that blanket the region create the most famous seasonal scenery in Furano. Moreover, Furano's agricultural produce is among the finest in Hokkaido, offering attractions like flower farms, winery tours, and local markets.

Visitors can relish the delight of tasting fresh, locally-grown sweet melons and experience cheese-making, among other diverse and enjoyable activities.

Exploring Furano: Main Transportation Options

Getting around Furano is made easy with three primary transportation options.

a. Train

The first involves taking a train from either JR Sapporo or JR Asahikawa stations, with a travel time of approximately 2.5 hours.

For added convenience during the peak tourist season from June to September, the "Furano Lavender Express" train operates directly between Sapporo and Furano, providing a seamless non-stop journey lasting about 2 hours.

A final option is the "Furano-Biei NOROKKO" train, connecting Furano and Asahikawa. While this choice may come with some limitations in terms of flexibility regarding travel time and destinations, it does offer the advantage of discounted tickets designed specifically for international visitors.

b. Local bus tours

The second option is to make use of local bus tours. Various tour operators in Hokkaido offer package itineraries that include Furano’s major attractions. This option eliminates the hassle of driving and navigating public transportation.

Some tours even provide foreign language guides, and you can conveniently reserve and purchase tickets online.

Buses have become a popular choice for many tourists visiting Furano, as they allow for a stress-free, relaxing experience, even if you have to stick to a predetermined schedule and itinerary.

c. Car rental

The third option is renting a car, which is perfect for exploring Furano's vast area during peak tourist season from June to September when public transportation may not be as convenient. Opting for your own driving tour is an ideal choice for families with children, or travelers who prefer the freedom to plan and adjust their own itineraries and go sightseeing at their own pace.

What to See: 6 Must-Visit Sightseeing Spots in Furano

1. Farm Tomita - Furano's Super Popular Flower Farm

1. Farm Tomita - Furano's Super Popular Flower Farm

Farm Tomita is the largest tourist farm in Hokkaido and a super popular destination, attracting over one million visitors annually. The farm features expansive lavender-covered hillsides and vast fields of various colorful flowers. From spring to winter, the landscape dazzles with a vibrant array of blossoms, providing a splendid visual feast.

Beyond the picturesque rural scenery, Farm Tomita offers delicious delicacies made from local produce, like their signature lavender ice cream, lavender pudding, lavender cream puffs, and cantaloupe sherbet. There are also lavender-based essential oils and soaps available for purchase. Be sure to take plenty of photos and indulge in delightful treats while visiting this enchanting location!

2. Choei Lavender Farm & Nakafurano Flower Park - Enjoy the Expansive Scenery by Cable Car

2. Choei Lavender Farm & Nakafurano Flower Park - Enjoy the Expansive Scenery by Cable Car

Choei Lavender Farm & Nakafurano Flower Park is beautifully situated on a hilltop. Admission is free, and from late June to August, there’s a single-person chairlift in operation (round-trip fee: 400 yen for high school students and adults, 200 yen for junior high and elementary school students, free for younger children). The cable car is an excellent way to appreciate Furano's beautiful rural scenery from a different perspective.

The garden boasts a wide variety of lavender species, but some types bloom later, making the best viewing time around mid-July to the end of July. In winter, the area transforms into a ski resort, which also offers free admission.

3. Hinode Park: Explore the Birthplace of Furano Lavender

3. Hinode Park: Explore the Birthplace of Furano Lavender

Located in Kamifurano-cho, Hinode Park is one of the eight most scenic spots in the area. In the park, you'll find lavender gardens, observation decks, and camping grounds.

From the observation deck, visitors can marvel at the surrounding lavender fields, pink flower fields, and the lush greenery of the Furano Basin in the distance. Beneath the observation deck lies the "Love Bell," a white memorial flower bell. Legend has it that if you make a wish and ring the bell, it will come true. Many couples come here to take wedding photos.

Every July, the park hosts the "Chu Furano Lavender Festival - Lavender Festa" and the "Four Seasons' Colorful Festival of Flowers and Flames." During these events, the park is beautifully illuminated in the evenings, creating a romantic, magical atmosphere.

  • Hinode Park
    • Address 27 Higashi 1 Senkita, Kamifurano-cho, Sorachi-gun, Hokkaido 071-0521
    • Season: Mid-May to Mid-October
      Open: 24 hours
      Admission: Free

4. Shikisai-no-Oka: Visit Its Splendid Flower Carpet

4. Shikisai-no-Oka: Visit Its Splendid Flower Carpet

Shikisai-no-Oka is located in Biei-cho, approximately a 20-minute drive from Farm Tomita and about a 5-minute drive (or 25-minute walk) from JR Bibaushi Station. This tourist flower field covers a vast area of 15 hectares and showcases different blooming flowers between early May and October. The peak flower viewing season attracts the most visitors from late June to the end of August.

What makes this place special is the availability of NOROCCO sightseeing tractors (for a fee) and park rental cars that allow visitors to leisurely explore the picturesque and colorful hilly flower fields.

Additionally, there's a sheep and alpaca ranch (ticket required) and shops selling Biei's ice cream and lavender products, providing opportunities for both entertainment and shopping enjoyment.

5. Patchwork Road: Admire the Most Famous Scenic Country Road in Hokkaido

Photo: PIXTA
Photo: PIXTA

Patchwork Road is a term used for a 14 km-long scenic country road in the hilly region around Biei. Along it, you'll find lush greenery, golden-yellow farmlands, trees, and contrasting azure skies, forming the most beautiful countryside scenery. Patchwork Road is an essential destination for summer driving trips to Biei, and one that visitors shouldn’t miss.

It's important to note that the farmland on both sides of the road is private property, and visitors must not trespass into the fields to take pictures. However, designated photo spots along the road have parking areas and information signs. Please remember to follow the rules and regulations and be respectful of the local environment while enjoying the picturesque views.

6. Shirogane Blue Pond: A Once-in-a-Lifetime Sight

6. Shirogane Blue Pond: A Once-in-a-Lifetime Sight

Located about a 20-minute drive from JR Kamifurano Station, Shirogane Blue Pond is an artificial reservoir formed as part of the Tokachi River flood control project. The water in the pond showcases various colors depending on the season and time. From mid-May to the end of June, on clear, sunny days, you can witness the pristine, transparent cobalt-blue water.

Especially after being featured as a background image for Apple's Mac OS X in 2012, it gained worldwide fame, making it a must-visit, once-in-a-lifetime sight so mesmerizing that its color is even referred to as "Biei Blue" to describe the captivating hue.

In winter, the beauty of Shirogane Blue Pond differs from the cobalt blue water seen in the summer.
In winter, the beauty of Shirogane Blue Pond differs from the cobalt blue water seen in the summer.

Each season presents a slightly different landscape around the pond. When snowmelt flows in spring, it's the best time to witness the turquoise pond. In the summer, you'll see brighter blue hues more frequently. However, the pond freezes over from December to April, and the surface is covered with glistening white snow, transforming the area into a silvery fantasy world. This winter scene is incredibly romantic and makes Shirogane Blue Pond a stunning destination worth visiting in all seasons!

Indulge in Delicious Delights! 6 Recommended Food Spots in Furano

1. Popura Farm: Taste Two Famous Hokkaido Delicacies

Visit Popura Farm and taste two of Hokkaido's famous dishes: cantaloupe and sorbet ice cream.
Visit Popura Farm and taste two of Hokkaido's famous dishes: cantaloupe and sorbet ice cream.

The Furano region, known for its significant temperature variations, is also known for growing cantaloupe. At Popura Farm, located in Nakafurano, they serve a unique dessert called “Santa’s Beard,” which uses a halved cantaloupe as a bowl, generously topped with a large scoop of ice cream. This delightful treat allows you to savor two distinct Hokkaido specialties at the same time and has become a popular treat for travelers. Don’t miss the chance to try it when you’re in the area!

The farm also serves other desserts like “Godzilla’s Beard” with chocolate sauce and “Santa’s Navel” with Tokachi red bean. Each comes in a 1/4 or 1/2 size cantaloupe, providing a wide range of options for sharing with friends or enjoying solo. Prices vary based on size and flavor, starting from 1,100 yen for the smallest size.

Please note: “Santa’s Beard (サンタのヒゲ)” is a registered trademark of Popura Farm.

  • POPURA FARM Nakafurano Honten
    ポプラファーム 中富良野本店
    • Address 18 Higashi 1 Senkita, Nakafurano-cho, Sorachi-gun, Hokkaido 071-0771
    • Nearest Station 5-minute walk from JR Nishinaka Station
    • Phone Number 0167-44-2033
    • Season: April - October (closed November - March)
      Open: 9:00am - 5:30pm (Last order 5:00pm)

2. Curry Omelette Rice: Relish Furano's Highly Popular Must-Try Dish

2. Curry Omelette Rice: Relish Furano's Highly Popular Must-Try Dish

Yuiga Doxon is conveniently located just 3 minutes from JR Furano Station. Emphasizing the concept of harmonizing with nature in Furano, they make the most of nature’s bounty to create uniquely exquisite dishes.

The restaurant’s menu includes their rich, flavorful signature dish – curry omelet rice – homemade sausages, and specialties like beef tongue, Ezo venison, and locally sourced pork. It is among the few highly sought-after dining spots in the Furano area.

The restaurant’s treehouse-style architecture features two floors and outdoor seating covered with canvas awnings. With its wild, adventurous atmosphere, it remains popular among both domestic and international tourists. Due to the restaurant’s popularity, be ready to wait in line to get into Yuiga Doxon.

3. A Must-Try Favorite: Kumagera's Furano Wagyu Beef Bowl

3. A Must-Try Favorite: Kumagera's Furano Wagyu Beef Bowl

The signature dish at Kumagera is the "Grilled Wagyu Beef Bowl," made with Furano Wagyu beef. The beef is lightly seared to bring out the flavor, thinly sliced, and served on top of rice.

The Wagyu beef, rich in marbling and incredibly tender, practically melts in your mouth. A mixture of sauce and mustard is drizzled over the rice to enhance the taste, creating another delightful flavor experience.

This dish has attracted numerous food enthusiasts from both Japan and abroad who come to savor its unique taste. "Cheese Tofu" made with Furano milk is another refreshing and flavorful dish that comes highly recommended.

  • Kumagera
    • Address 3-22, Hinode-machi, Furano City, Hokkaido 076-0025
    • Nearest Station 5-minute walk from JR Furano Station
    • Open: 11:30am - 10:00pm (Last order 9:00pm)
      Closed: Wednesdays

4. Coffee Mori no Tokei Terrace: Experience the Enchanting Forest Ambiance

4. Coffee Mori no Tokei Terrace: Experience the Enchanting Forest Ambiance

“Coffee Mori no Tokei” is a charming wooden coffee shop nestled among lush greenery within the premises of the New Furano Prince Hotel. It is also the coffee shop that served as the main setting in the Japanese drama “Wakakozake,” and to this day, the café has maintained the same table and chair settings used during the filming of the show.

Signature dishes include “Forest Curry” and “Snow Stew.” They also offer cakes named after snowy imagery, such as “First Snow,” “Snow Accumulation,” and “Snow Melt.”

The coffee shop provides customers with manual coffee grinders, allowing them to enjoy the experience of DIY hand-drip coffee. Savoring the rich aroma of coffee, patrons can gaze out the window at serene forest views, immersing themselves in a leisurely and peaceful moment. The ambiance offers a delightful escape into the tranquility of the slow passage of time.

5. Campana Rokkatei: Limited Edition Delicacies from the Renowned Hokkaido Souvenir Brand

Photo: PIXTA
Photo: PIXTA

"Campana Rokkatei" is a coffee shop and souvenir store operated by the famous Hokkaido souvenir brand Rokkatei. Located about an 8-minute drive from Furano Station and situated within a vast 24,000 square meter vineyard, the café offers breathtaking views of the expansive vineyards and the distant peaks of the Tokachi Mountain Range, providing a stunning and relaxing setting.

At Campana Rokkatei, you can not only purchase various Rokkatei products but also indulge in a variety of savory and sweet treats. One unique delight is the "Furano Mochi," made with green peas. Its delightful combination of savory and sweet flavors comes highly recommended and is a specialty of Campana Rokkatei.

6. Kumo Café: Summon a Sea of Clouds with a Serving of White Cloud Sherbet Ice Cream

Photo: Hoshino Resorts TOMAMU
Photo: Hoshino Resorts TOMAMU

In the southern part of Minamifurano, there is a mountain called Tomamu. On the top of Tomamu Mountain, Hoshino Resorts has built a platform called the “Unkai Terrace,” where you’ll also find Kumo Café.

The café offers a variety of cloud-inspired treats, like the fluffy “White Cloud Sherbet Ice Cream,” “Cloud Macarons” in lemon and vanilla flavors, and “Sky and Clouds Earl Grey Tea Latte” that embody the image of blue skies and white clouds with milk and blue butterfly pea tea.

Visitors can enjoy these delightful cloud-themed snacks while gazing at the breathtaking natural scenery. You might even witness a mesmerizing sea of clouds if you're lucky!

Bringing Home Wonderful Travel Memories from Four Recommended Shopping Spots in Furano!

1. Ningle Terrace: Explore a Fairy Tale Market

1. Ningle Terrace: Explore a Fairy Tale Market

Nestled within the grounds of the New Furano Prince Hotel, you'll find Ningle Terrace, a charming shopping area just a quick 2-minute stroll away. Amidst the trees, 15 artisanal shops await, showcasing a delightful array of handcrafted treasures that harmoniously blend with Furano's forest theme. From exquisite wooden carvings and glassware to intricate paper sculptures and mesmerizing kaleidoscopes, this enchanting spot is perfect for discovering one-of-a-kind souvenirs.

As night descends, Ningle Terrace transforms into a magical wonderland, bathed in soft, illuminating lights that create a dreamlike atmosphere. During the winter season, the quaint snow-covered cabins housing each shop become a picturesque sight, resembling scenes straight out of a European fairy tale world. A visit to Ningle Terrace promises a truly captivating and unforgettable experience.

2. Furano Marche: Get Everything Furano Has to Offer

Photo: PIXTA
Photo: PIXTA

Furano Marche, a delightful local market nestled in Furano, comprises three charming buildings: a product center, agricultural shops, and a delightful handmade bakery. This vibrant market is a treasure trove of local agricultural products and delectable processed foods, offering a wide array of fresh and affordable Furano specialties. Beyond the culinary delights, you'll also discover household goods and a diverse selection of miscellaneous items to explore.

A visit to Furano Marche is a delightful shopping experience, inviting you to leisurely stroll around, indulge in some on-site delicacies, or grab snacks to savor later.

  • Furano Marche
    • Address 13-1 Koumachi, Furano City, Hokkaido 076-0024
    • Nearest Station 7-minute walk from JR Furano Station
    • Open: 10:00am - 6:00pm (10:00am - 7:00pm, 6/17 - 8/31)
      Closed: During maintenance (11/13 - 11/17), Year-end and New Year holidays

3. Yanase Takashi's Anpanman Shop: A Fun, Kid-Friendly Paradise

Photo courtesy of Yanase Takshi's Anpanman Shop Furano
Photo courtesy of Yanase Takshi's Anpanman Shop Furano

Within Kyoei Noujou's premises in Furano, you'll find the delightful Takashi Yanase's Anpanman Shop Furano, a true gem for both kids and adults alike. The store boasts a vast array of Anpanman-related products that are sure to ignite excitement in anyone who steps inside. Step outside, and you'll discover a charming little garden adorned with statues of beloved characters like Anpanman, Baikinman, and Shokupanman.

Venture up to the second floor, and you'll find a captivating picture gallery and a fun-filled game area, designed to delight children of all ages. Although it might require a little travel, witnessing kids brimming with joy over Anpanman makes the journey completely worthwhile. Families seeking an unforgettable and enjoyable experience will find Takashi Yanase's Anpanman Shop Furano the perfect destination. (Please note, however, that as of April 28, 2023, the second-floor gallery is temporarily closed for renovation work.)

  • Yanase Takashi's Anpanman Shop Furano
    やなせたかしの店 アンパンマンショップふらの店
    • Address 3, Higashirukugo, Furano-shi, Hokkaido 076-0162
    • Nearest Station 25 minutes drive from JR Furano Station
    • Open: 09:00am - 5:30pm

4. Furano Winery: Free Tour & Tasting of Furano Wines and Grape Juice

4. Furano Winery: Free Tour & Tasting of Furano Wines and Grape Juice

Just a short 6-minute drive from JR Furano Station, you'll discover the picturesque Furano Winery perched atop a gentle hill. Embark on a fascinating journey with complimentary tours that unveil the art of Furano wine production and grant you the pleasure of sampling an array of exquisite Furano wines and refreshing grape juice.

The winery's shop boasts an impressive selection, including exclusive offerings not found elsewhere. If you visit in July, you'll be treated to a captivating sight as the nearby lavender fields burst into full bloom, creating a breathtaking contrast against the winery's charming red-brick building. A visit to Furano Winery promises a delightful blend of sensory pleasures and unforgettable moments.

Never-ending Fun! 4 Recommended Activities in Furano

1. Fun for All Ages at Family-Friendly Furano Ski Resort

1. Fun for All Ages at Family-Friendly Furano Ski Resort

Make your way to Furano Ski Resort between December and February for an unforgettable winter adventure. With 28 diverse slopes catering to both beginners and seasoned skiers, this resort is a paradise for snow enthusiasts. Whether you're new to skiing or need to rent equipment, rest assured, as the resort offers foreign language ski lessons and top-notch rental services.

On clear days, be prepared to be mesmerized by the awe-inspiring vistas of the Daisetsuzan Mountain Range. Beyond skiing, the fun never ends at this resort, with thrilling winter activities like snow rafting, sledding, and banana boating that promise endless excitement for families seeking shared enjoyment.

Please mark your calendar as the 2023-2024 ski season is set to thrill visitors from late November 2023 to early May 2024 (information as of July 2023).

2. Make Your Own Cheese at Furano Cheese Factory

2. Make Your Own Cheese at Furano Cheese Factory

At Furano Cheese Factory, you'll find not only a delightful assortment of fresh cheeses but also the opportunity to witness the cheese-making process firsthand. The factory warmly welcomes visitors to partake in various engaging hands-on experiences, from "milking cows" using model cows to exploring a captivating cheese history exhibition.

A definite highlight is the "Hands-On Experience Workshop," where participants can craft four delectable treats: butter, ice cream, cheese, and bread. This interactive session provides English instructions, ensuring it's accessible and enjoyable for international tourists as well.

Moreover, visitors can indulge in locally sourced ingredient pizzas and savor the goodness of freshly prepared cheese ice cream. It's a truly fantastic destination, catering to families of all sizes seeking an enriching and delightful experience.

(Kindly note that at present, the bread-making activity is temporarily unavailable.)

3. Leisure Guide Asobiya: Endless Fun with Bicycles, Hot Air Balloons, Snow Trekking, and More!

Photo: Klook
Photo: Klook

Leisure Guide Asobiya is a local tour company in Furano. They offer a wide range of activities including hot air ballooning, rafting, cycling, canyoning, snowmobile rides, snow trekking, ice fishing, and more. They also provide indoor workshops like jelly wax crafts, handicrafts, and blueberry jam making. With a diverse selection of fun-filled experiences, you can easily make online reservations. It's a perfect choice for tourists looking to create unforgettable memories in Furano!

  • Leisure Guide ASOBIYA
    • Address 4746, Aza-Gakuda 3-ku, Furano, Hokkaido 076-0035
    • Website: https://asobiya.jp/en/

4. Enjoy Hot Springs and Flower Fields at Furano Highland Hotel

The "Lavender Sea" by the hot tub
The "Lavender Sea" by the hot tub

When it comes to must-do activities in Japan, indulging in hot springs is undoubtedly at the top of the list! Discover the serene Furano Highland Hotel, located just a short 13-minute drive away from JR Furano Station, boasting marvelous hot spring facilities.

In the enchanting lavender season of July, guests can savor a truly exclusive experience—relaxing in an open-air bath with a captivating view of the lavender fields surrounding the hotel. This picturesque setting is a unique gem found only in Furano.

Even if you're not staying overnight, fret not! The hotel offers day-use hot spring services, welcoming travelers who specifically seek the hot spring experience in Japan. So, don't miss the chance to immerse yourself in this blissful tradition, and let the Furano Highland Hotel be your gateway to rejuvenation and tranquility.

  • Highland Furano
    Highland Furano
    • Address Shimanoshita, Furano, Hokkaido, 076-0036
    • Nearest Station Gakuden Station (Furano Line)

Furano's Popular Annual Events

  • Early February: Furano Ski Resort - Furano Ski Festival (In 2023, held on February 4th and 5th, for reference only for 2024)
  • Late June to Late July: Various Locations in Furano - Lavender Season
  • Early July to Mid-July: Hinode Park Lavender Garden - Lavender Festa Kamifurano (In 2023, held on July 16th and 17th, with illumination period from July 1 to 17)
  • Mid-July: Hinode Park - Flowers and Flames Four Seasons Color Festival (2023 information yet to be announced)
  • Late July: Kitanokazan Lavender Garden - Nakafurano Lavender Festival & Fireworks Display (In 2023, held on July 22nd, for detailed information, please refer to the official website in Japanese)
  • End of July: Around Furano Station - Furano Hokkaido Heso Matsuri (Belly Button Festival) (In 2023, held on July 28th and 29th)
  • Early September: Furano Cheese Factory - Furano Cheese Festival (In 2023, held on September 10th)

Explore Furano - Hokkaido's Must Visit Beautiful Countryside City!

Furano beckons with its vast fields adorned in shades of pink and purple lavender, a magical forest market, and delectable treats like creamy ice cream crafted from local delights such as cantaloupe and lavender, along with tempting seared wagyu beef bowls. This enchanting destination promises a wealth of unique local experiences and mouthwatering cuisine that will leave you in awe.

Whether it's the captivating attractions or the delightful food, Furano guarantees a relaxing and unforgettable journey. Don't miss out on exploring the recommended places mentioned here, and fully immerse yourself in the sheer beauty that Furano has to offer!

Please be aware that the information in this article is based on details as of June 2023. For the latest updates, be sure to visit the official websites of each location. Embark on your Furano adventure and savor every moment of this captivating wonderland!

*This information is from the time of this article's publication.
*Prices and options mentioned are subject to change.
*Unless stated otherwise, all prices include tax.

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