Mt. Moiwa (Moiwa-yama) rises 535 meters and is close to Sapporo City. The view from the top affords an excellent view of the city as well as a spectacular view of Ishikari Bay and Ishikari Plain in the distance. The glittering lights of Sapporo at night has been recognized as one of Japan’s three night views. The superb view from the mountain’s peak together with gourmet dishes and strolls through nature highlight the attractions of Sapporo. Here are some suggestions on how to enjoy the night view from Mt. Moiwa.
Access is a breeze using the ropeway
The general way to get to the top of Mt. Moiwa is to first take the Sapporo Mt. Moiwa Ropeway from Sanroku Station and then change to the Morris mini-cable car at Chufuku Station which leaves at 15-minute intervals.
To get to Mt. Moiwa Station from the JR Sapporo Station, board the Sapporo Municipal Subway Namboku Line and then transfer to a Sapporo streetcar at Odori Station. Get off at the stop at the entrance to the ropeway. From there a 5-minute ride on the free shuttle bus will take you to the top. (Shuttle buses depart about every 15 minutes.)
If you visit by car, note that you cannot go to the summit by car, so use the parking lot at Moiwa Sanroku Station or use the parking lot at Moiwa Chufuku Station after taking the Moiwasan Kanko Expressway, a toll road.
Board the ropeway and head toward Moiwa Chufuku Station.
Once the gondola door closes the car sways lightly and then begins its ascent, giving the sensation of floating on air.
As the gondola ascends you get a memorable view of the city spreading out below.
The view is magnificent and doubles the pleasure of the gondola ride!
Don’t just transfer at Moiwa Chufuku Station!
Take a few minutes to stroll about enjoying the view after you arrive at Moiwa Chufuku Station and before you take the Morris car to the top.
There are no souvenir shops at the top of the mountain, so if you wish to buy some, this is the place to do it. In addition to offering confectioneries unique to Hokkaido, Mt. Moiwa Limited Edition Ramen is also offered as well as other original goods such as the Mt. Moiwa mascot character Morris.
So as not to be encumbered with items when viewing the night scene, it is best to decide what you want to buy and then purchase it on your way back.
A roller coaster sensation? Taking the Morris car to the summit
One way to the top is by taking the Morris car.
The Morris car begins with a rumbling sound and slowly rises upwards. When you look out the front and sides there is the exciting sensation of being in a roller coaster as the car slowly rises. Looking back you get a great view of the city spread out below.
Going on foot? Take the nature-study mountain path to the summit!
Walking is another way to reach the summit. It takes about 15 minutes and along the way you can enjoy the fresh air and natural scenery. (The nature-study mountain path is closed during the winter and the schedule varies according to the weather. It is not possible to use it at night.)
The signboard drawing your attention to the possible appearance of brown bears might give you a start, but there is no need to worry as many people take these paths. There are no lights, so it is best to take them during the daytime.
Enjoy the majestic view from the observatory at the summit!
Upon arriving at the summit whether you walk or take the Morris car, the first thing you should do is enjoy the view from the observatory!
The view is spectacular from the roof!
Checking out the view of the city is not the only way to enjoy your time at the observatory.
Countless padlocks are attached to the railing around the Bell of Happiness.
Legend has it that if two people write their names on a Padlock of Love and attach it to the railing around the Bell of Happiness, then they will never separate.
Fully enjoy the summit!
If you have been enjoying the view from the observatory in the afternoon, linger a bit longer until evening when the sun begins to set. During that time you can browse the second floor.
The Super Planetarium in the Star Hall (700 yen for adults, 400 yen for junior high school and younger children) is a must! Each show lasts about 20 minutes. (Show times are shown on the official website.)
If you are feeling a bit hungry you can get something to eat at The Jewels restaurant.
Magnificent French cuisine in a magnificent restaurant!
If you want something more filling than a light meal, go to The Jewels inside the shop. This spot is so popular you will need to make reservations in advance. The reason for its popularity is the magnificent view it affords at night in a relaxed atmosphere while enjoying French cuisine.
This location is indeed a “delicious” location. The cuisine served is prepared with care using the finest seasonal ingredients to be enjoyed under the luxurious night sky.
Lunches are served a la carte whereas dinners offer full courses. The night view is a main dish all in its own complementing the delicious cuisine!
The menu varies according to season so please check the website for details.
* Actual dishes may slightly differ from those shown in the photographs (photos provided by Sapporo Promotion Authority)
* Photos of the dishes may vary according to season and available ingredients. The photos are just images.
THE JEWELSTHE JEWELS
- Address 〒005-0832 北海道札幌市南区北ノ沢1956先 藻岩山山頂／Mountain of Mt. Moiwa, 1956saki, Kitanosawa, Minami-ku Sapporo-shi, Hokkaido, 005-0832, Japan
- Phone Number 011-513-0531
Hours of operation: April ~ November: 11:00 AM ~ 3:30 PM, 5:00 PM ~ 9:00 PM (last order 8:00 PM); December ~ March: 12:00 PM ~ 3:30 PM, 5:00 PM ~ 9:00 PM (last order 8:00 PM) ※ restaurant closed 3:30 PM ~ 5:00 PM (takeout corner is open)
Holidays: Every year from the end of November for about 10 days (for maintenance inspection of the ropeway). November 5 ~ November 19, 2018 (scheduled) ※ Closed when ropeway is not operating (there are times when the ropeway is not operated due to maintenance inspections and bad weather). For details, please visit the web site.
You won’t be able to take your eyes off of the view of the Sapporo skyline between dusk and nightfall!
The night view is the perfect finale to a visit to Mt. Moiwa. The spectacular transition of the skyline colors from deep purple to black is stunning!
The view of the Sapporo skyline extends from the northeast to the east. It is not possible to observe the night view and the sun setting in the west at the same time because of the mountains, but the view still is spectacular.
Mt. Moiwa is a special seat in the night sky! If you have the time to visit, the best way to see the night landscape is to go in the afternoon so you can see the transition to night. Autumn and winter are especially good times as the crisp air is clean and clear and leaves have fallen from the trees. The evening and night scenes are even more beautiful at these times of the year.
The view from the observation point, the natural surroundings and gourmet dishes all make for a memorable experience. The ropeway and Morris car are also unique experiences. Enjoy a day of pleasure on Mt. Moiwa to complement your views of Sapporo at night.
* All prices mentioned in the article include tax.
Fees: Ropeway + Morris car roundtrip ticket: 1,700 yen for adults, 850 yen for junior high school students and younger
* One-way tickets for the ropeway and Morris car are also possible
Hours of operation: April 1 ~ November 20, 10:30 AM ~ 10:00 PM (last car goes up at 9:30 PM); December 1 ~ March 31, 11:00 AM ~ 10:00 PM (last car goes up at 9:30 PM); December 31, 11:00 AM ~ 5:00 PM (last car goes up at 4:30 PM); January 1, 5:00 AM ~ 5:00 PM (last car goes up at 4:30 PM)
Holidays: Every year for 10 days during the latter part of November (all facilities closed for maintenance), November 21 ~ 30, 2017 ※Operations are also ceased at other times due to maintenance and bad weather. Please consult the website for details.
Written by : Nobuhiro Kawashima
*Prices and options mentioned are subject to change.
*Unless stated otherwise, all prices include tax.
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