Hokkaido is one of the most popular sightseeing places in Japan. The attractive parts of traveling by train is the possibility to go around many places from one to another, whether it is looking for souvenirs or food. Here, we will introduce the travel time and fares of traveling by train around Hokkaido.
Part 1) From the New Chitose Airport to Sapporo
Sapporo, the capital of Hokkaido has many sightseeing spots: Sapporo Snow Festival as its winter specialty, Susukino as a red-light district, The Clock Tower, Sapporo Hitsujigaoka Observation Hill with the statue of Clark which is located in the suburbs, and ski jumping stadiums. It is 37 minutes away from New Chitose Airport by JR rapid.
Part 2) Travel around from Sapporo Station!
Many tourists will go for sightseeing outside of Sapporo. If you’re planning to start the trip from Sapporo based on railway, Otaru, Noboribetsu Hot Spring, Toya Lake, and Tomamu should be your chosen sightseeing spots.
Otaru has several historical buildings, including the street formerly called “The Wall Street of North”. It takes only 30 minutes to Otaru from Sapporo Station by Rapid Airport. Otaru is a popular place for having a day trip since it is close and has a beautiful canal there. Sushi with fresh row fish and a sweet “Double Fromage” are also famous in Otaru.
Access: From Sapporo Station to Otaru Station by Rapid Airport bound for Otaru
Travel Time: 32 min.
Fare: 1,160 yen (the reserved seat is included)
Distance: 33.8 km (24.1 miles)
Noboribetsu Hot Spring (登別温泉, Noboribetsu Onsen)
Noboribetsu Hot Spring in the southwestern part of Hokkaido is the most famous hot spring in Hokkaido; here 10,000 tons of hot spring water gushes forth per day. The white steam and hot water from the volcanic crater, “Jigokudani” (Hell’s Valley) reminds of a demon’s house.
Access: From Sapporo Station to Noboribetsu Station by Limited Express Super Hokuto or Express Suzuran
Travel Time: 1 hour
Fare: 4,480 yen (the reserved seat is included)
Distance: 111.7 km (69 miles)
Lake Toya (洞爺湖, Toyako)
Lake Toya, famous for its almost circular caldera lake. It is a beautiful lake that has been chosen as one of the "100 Landscapes of Japan”, a list of famous scenic sites in Japan.
Boat tours taking you to see Oshima, Kannon Island, Benten Island, and Manju Island are quite popular. Especially, the sightseeing boat "Espoir", which is inspired in a castle from the Middle Ages of Europe, attracts people.
Access: From Sapporo Station to Toya Station by Limited Express Super Hokuto
Travel Time: 110 min.
Fare: 5,920 yen (the reserved seat is included)
Distance: 164.9 km (102 miles)
A sightseeing spot, Tomamu is located in the Hidaka Mountains. Hoshino Resort, one of Japan’s leading integrated resort hotel chains, is famous for its Unkai Terrace, where you can see beautiful views when you climb the summit with a gondola early in the morning. In summer, it is a popular place as a summer resort for swimming and playing golf, etc., while in winter, it is popular for winter sports. You can enjoy many activities throughout the four seasons.
Access: From Sapporo Station to Tomamu Station by Limited Express Super Ozora or Super Tokachi
Travel Time: 75 min.
Fare: 5,130 yen (the reserved seat is included)
Distance: 142.6 km (88 miles)
Part 3) Travel around from Otaru Station!
Would you like to have a trip with nature and hot springs which you can go from Otaru? Here are the places to go, Niseko and Yoichi! Niseko is a beloved place by ski adepts, and Yoichi is the place where the Nikka Whisky Yoichi Distillery is located.
Niseko is famous worldwide for its powder snow. Since it’s known to skiers abroad, there are a lot of English notations in the city. You can enjoy rafting and trekking in summer, skiing and snowboarding in winter. Most of the guests are foreigners and there are many immigrants, we could say that it is the most international ski resort area in Japan.
Access: From Otaru Station to Kuchan Station by JR Hakodate Line bound for Kuchan
From Kuchan Station to Niseko by JR Hakodate Line bound for Oshamanbe Station
Travel Time: 2 hours
Fare: 1,450 yen
Distance: 72.9 km (45 miles)
Yoichi-cho, located in Shakotan Peninsula, is the second hometown of Taketsuru Masataka, known as the "father of Japanese whiskey", and there is a Nikka Whiskey Hokkaido Factory and Yoichi distillery. It is rich in seafood including sea urchins and fruits such as apples and grapes, and it is famous for not only whiskey but also a winery that produces Yoichi wine.
Access: From Otaru Station to Yoichi Station by JR Hakodate Line bound for Kuchan Station
Travel Time: 25 min.
Fare: 360 yen
Distance: 19.9 km (12 miles)
Part 4) Travel around from Asahikawa Station!
Asahikawa, with Hokkaido's second-largest population following Sapporo, is a famous city for its popular action exhibit, which shows you the natural movements of animals in its natural way. If you go for sightseeing based on here, you cannot miss Biei and Furano, to which you can go in the JR Furano Line. They are beautiful hilly areas which remind of European countryside.
* Takes 50 minutes by bus from Asahikawa Airport to Asahikawa Station for 620 yen
Located in the center of Hokkaido, it is one of "Japan's Most Beautiful Village" coalition, with 63 villages from all over Japan as of January 2018. It’s famous for its large and small hills and is called "Hill Town". Besides that, its rice fields and grasslands that change depending on the season, the patchwork roads where flowers and crops are lined, and its "Blue Pond" are also famous. Especially in summer, it is one of Hokkaido's top sightseeing areas that many tourists visit.
Access: From Asahikawa Station to Biei Station by JR Furano Line bound for Biei
Travel Time: 35 min.
Fare: 540 yen
Distance: 23.8 km (14.7 miles)
A famous place for its lavenders. It has many local foods like Furano Wine and Cheese using the fresh local ingredients. They are suitable to take them with you as souvenirs for your family and friends.
Access: From Asahikawa Station to Furano Station by JR Furano Line bound for Furano
Travel Time: 70 min.
Fare: 1,070 yen
Distance: 54.8 km (34 miles)
Part 5) Travel around from Hakodate Station!
Hakodate is famous as the gateway of the north. It is also famous as a town of squids, and the morning market where you can eat fresh seafood is very popular. Hokkaido Shinkansen "Shin Hakodate Hokuto Station" was built in 2016, and the access from Tokyo area became much more convenient. A beautiful night scene and an exotic, retro-styled city with the mix of western and Japanese culture are worth to visit.
*From Hakodate Airport to Hakodate Station takes 20 minutes by shuttle bus for 450 yen.
Onuma Quasi National Park
The Onuma Quasi National Park is a place where you can enjoy seasonal scenery and activities, in Nanae-cho Town near Hakodate. There are 126 large and small islands, and you can enjoy cycling, boating and doing boat tours. You can also spend time around nature, flowers, birds and so forth through the four seasons.
Access: From Hakodate Station to Onuma Koen Station by Limited Express Super Hokuto
Travel Time: 25 min.
Fare: 1,680 yen
Distance: 28.0 km (17.3 miles)
Part 6) Travel around From Abashiri Station!
Located on the northeast coast of Hokkaido, Abashiri is famous for the drift ice in the Sea of Okhotsk. It has good weather throughout the year, and the amount of annual rainfall and snowfall is small. It is a warm area where the temperature difference is small since it faces the sea compared to other areas of Hokkaido. There are the "Abashiri Prison" museum depicting both the Hokkaido development era and the prisoner’s life, and the "Hokkaido Northern Ethnic Museum" that tells the life and culture of the indigenous Ainu.
*From Memanbetsu Airport by bus takes 30 minutes for 910 yen.
Kitami City is facing the Sea of Okhotsk and Lake Saroma, the largest lake in Hokkaido. It has 110 kilometers (68 miles) length from the Sea of Okhotsk to Mt. Daisetsu in Susono City and known as a city of curling. In addition, this city is famous for producing mint leaves, thus peppermint and peppermint oil are perfect souvenirs to take from this city. The Lake Saloma Wakka Gensei Kaen is about 20 kilometers long and is registered as Abashiri Quasi National Park, Hokkaido Heritage Site, here more than 300 kinds of flowers grow, and it is also a breeding place for wild birds.
Access: From Abashiri Station to Kitami Station by Limited Express Okhotsk or Limited Express Taisetsu
Travel time: 50 min.
Fare: 2,720 yen (the reserved seat is included)
Distance: 53.0 km (32 miles)
The “Gensei Kaen Station” is located on Kushiro Line and is open only from May to October. It is the nearest station to the Koshimizu Gensei Kaen, and it can be used only during the high season period, so some people call it a phantom station. This station is used for the Koshimizu Gensei Kaen. You can enjoy about 40 different kinds of flowers in this park.
Access: From Abashiri to Gensei-Kaen Station by JR Kushiro Line bound for Kushiro
Travel time: 20 min.
Fare: 360 yen
Distance: 16.9 km (10.5 miles)
Shari-town, where the Shiretoko-Shari Station is located, is known as the gateway to Shiretoko, a World Natural Heritage site. To go to Shiretoko, take a route bus for an hour by Shiretoko Line from the station. Shiretoko is located in the southernmost of the northern hemisphere ice floes, and the plankton carried by the ice floes create an area where various kinds of organisms inhabit and grow. The Shiretoko Goko Lakes, surrounded by virgin forests, and the Kamuiwakka Hot Water Falls are famous as well.
Access: From Abashiri Station to Shiretoko-Shari Station by JR Kushiro Line bound for Kushiro
Travel time: 45 min.
Fare: 840 yen
Distance: 37.3 km (23 miles)
Part 7) Travel around from Kushiro Station!
Kushiro has the largest population in the Eastern Area, famous for the largest wetland in Japan, Kushiro Wetland. Kushiro Wetland is registered under the "Ramsar Convention", which establishes the international agreement for the preservation of wetlands. You can see beautiful scenery at the observation decks in Kushiro Wetland National Park such as Hosooka Observatory. From spring to autumn, the “Kushiro Wetland Trolley Train”, where you can enjoy the wetlands relaxed while going to Touro Station, is quite popular. Kushiro is also famous as a "Fog Town” and has many local foods such as fireside grilled tuna, zangi (fried chicken) and Kushiro ramen.
* It takes 45 minutes from Tancho Kushiro Airport to Kushiro Station for 940 yen.
Obihiro where you can enjoy the "Banei Keiba" and having food in the Tokachi Plain of the Eastern Area. It is an area where you can feel the blessings of the majestic nature of Hokkaido, and famous confectionery stores in Hokkaido, “Rokuhanai” main store, and the caramel “Hanabatake Bokujo”, which its row caramel has become fad. In addition, you can see Manabe Garden and Shichiku Garden in "Hokkaido Garden Path", located in Obihiro which connected eight gardens in Tokachi, Furano, and Daisetsu. Its length is 250 kilometers long. It is also recommended to visit the winery and try wine tasting at the Ikeda Wine Castle, located in front of Ikeda Station.
Access: From Kushiro Station to Obihiro Station by Limited Express Ozora
Travel Time: 90 min.
Fare: 4,810 yen (the reserved seat is included)
Distance: 128.3 km (79.7 miles)
Access: From Kushiro Station to Ikeda Station by Limited Express Ozora
Travel Time: 80 min.
Fare: 4,480 yen (the reserved seat is included)
Distance: 104.1 km (64.6 miles)
Nemuro, the “closest town in the morning sun” is located in the easternmost part of Japan with Cape Nosappu. The Port of Nemuro is the best spot for fishing pacific sauries (called “sanma” in Japanese), and many people visit the “Nemuro Sanma Festival” and the “Nemuro Crab Festival” held in the fall each year.
Access: From Kushiro Station to Nemuro Station by JR Hanasaki Line bound for Nemuro
Travel Time: 190 min.
Fare: 2,490 yen
Distance: 135.4 km (84.1 miles)
*Prices and options mentioned are subject to change.
*Unless stated otherwise, all prices include tax.
Sapporo Transportation Guide – Sapporo Municipal Subway Section
Top 5 Recommended Spots near New Chitose Airport: From Outlets to Beautiful Gardens!
Exploring Southern Hokkaido! Hakodate & Onuma: 2-day, 1-night itinerary
Checking Out Japan's Incredible Floral Landscapes! (Spring 2019 Edition)
3 hotels with amazing views and perfect locations in Otaru, Hokkaido
Hokkaido Japan Road Trip: Rental car advice and planning tips you want to know
Local Writer’s Recommendation! Otaru Day Trip by Train from Sapporo
Getting Around Niseko: All About Available Transportation
Best time to visit the Lavender Fields of Furano! Top Six Selection
Get to know Hokkaido! Checking out Hokkaido’s Main Areas and Routes
Niseko Access: Getting from Hokkaido’s New Chitose Airport to the slopes of Niseko!
Hokkaido Skiing: Getting From Sapporo to the Area’s Top 6 Ski Areas by Train and Bus!
- #best sushi hokkaido
- #things to do hokkaido
- #best ramen sapporo
- #what to bring to japan
- #new years in tokyo
- #what to buy in ameyoko
- #japanese nail trends
- #what to do in odaiba
- #onsen tattoo friendly tokyo
- #best sweets otaru
- #japanese fashion culture
- #best nature furano
- #japanese convenience store snacks
- #best japanese soft drinks