Travelling To Hokkaido Here Is A List Of Things You Can Do

From tasting the fresh seafood and visiting the many national parks, Hokkaido's capital city offers a lot for first time travellers to explore
 Noboribetsu Date Jidaimura old architecture Edo Historic Village Hokkaido, Japan.  Photo Credit PixHound /
Noboribetsu Date Jidaimura old architecture Edo Historic Village Hokkaido, Japan. Photo Credit PixHound /

Travelling to Japan most of the time includes just the big cities of Tokyo and Kyoto in our itineraries, but there are some hidden wonders that often fly under our radar, Hokkaido being one among them. It is the second largest island in Japan, with free-flowing Lavender gardens, beaches and the volcanic mountain Asahi. The flourishing island at the country's northernmost prefecture is big enough to have made its own region. With an expansive geographical area, Hokkaido prospers in agriculture due to the fertility of the land and its readily available rich water resources. Here's a look at all you need to know about&nbspHokkaido.

Best Time To Visit

The ideal time to visit Hokkaido is during the summer when the entire island comes alive with vibrant colours and the smells of the season, with languid days full of sunshine and cooler, breezier nights. But the best thing about this climate-flexible island is that you can visit it throughout the year and find activities to indulge in whenever you choose. 

What To Eat 

Since this is an island and aquatic resources are abundant, you will get the freshest seafood there. If you have the means to cook, then head over to the local markets and get your hands on freshly sourced King Crab, Snow Crab and a lot of different varieties of other seafood. Otherwise, head to Kani Honke Sapporo for the most delicious seafood bowls and crab specialities. (Location&nbsp2 Chome-1-18 Kita 3 Jonishi, Chuo Ward, Sapporo)

Another must-try dish here is Genghis Khan or Jingisukan. Named after the Mongolian ruler Genghis Khan, the Jingisukan uses the Mongolian yakiniku style of cooking with meat which is seared on a helmet-shaped charcoal grill. The dish is completed by the addition of seasonal vegetables like cabbage and bean sprouts. The Jingisukan Daikokuya in Asahikawa is the best way to try this sumptuous main dish. (Location&nbsp5 Chome-3 4 Nakadori 4-jodori, Asahikawa)

What To See

With the beautiful and multifarious landscape, Sapporo, the capital of Hokkaido, has a lot of scenic sights for travellers to explore. Here are a few recommendations.

Farm Tomita Lavender Farms The sprawling lavender farms look like something out of a fairytale. The best time to go visit is during spring when the flowers are in full bloom.

Shirogane Blue Pond The stunning and mystical electric blue waters of the Shirogane Blue Pond is something you should not miss on your trip to the island. The glittering bright blue waters of the pond are mainly due to the bleached rocks at the bottom of the pond. The pond gets its water from the Shirahige Falls and the mix of substances like aluminium and sulphur bleaches the rocks white, so the blue colour pops out even more, giving it an ethereal, otherworldly glow. 

National Parks Just like with the islands' flora, there is also plentiful fauna with many national parks that you can visit. The Akan Mashu National Park, and Shikotsu-Toya are some of the most popular ones among nearly 10 national parks in the prefecture.

The Information

Getting There&nbspThere are some direct flights to Hokkaido prefecture, but those could greatly dent your pocket. The best way to go there is to fly to Tokyo&rsquos Haneda Airport and from there take a flight to Sapporo's New Chitose Airport. It will land you in about less than two hours.

You can also reach Sapporo via trains and ferries but those take a much longer time. The Shinkansen bullet train takes somewhere around nine hours to get there with a change of train at Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto.

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