Escape the summer heat by spending 1 week in Hokkaido, Japan

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Primarily famous for its winter season, heavy snowfall, and great skiing, Hokkaido is perhaps even more enjoyable to visit in the summer. Less popular than the rest of the island during the summer, Hokkaido offers wonderful natural destinations with far fewer tourists than other parts of Japan.


Being the northernmost island in Japan, it enjoys a respite from the summer heat. For lovers of mountains, lush green fields, endless flowers and temperate climate, Hokkaido is the perfect summer destination.

The hottest month in Hokkaido is August. During the month of August, average highs are 24 C (75 F) and average lows are 20 C (68 F) with perhaps occasional days of 28 C (82 F). With sunshine almost every day, Hokkaido becomes an incredibly attractive destination. Here’s a seven-day itinerary for getting the most out of Hokkaido during the summer.

Day 1: Land and recover in Chitose or Sapporo

Some travelers may want to land and fly directly to Sapporo, Hokkaido’s main city. However, for those who want to relax immediately, Chitose offers beautiful destinations to do so.


Relaxation in Chitose

For those who don’t want to make the 40-minute trip to Sapporo, there’s plenty to enjoy inside Chitose, the airport city itself. Doraemon Waku-Waku Sky Park is an ideal destination for those with children. They can just go wild over the many activities they have available, and it’s conveniently located right next to the airport. New Street Chitose Ramen is another popular choice for quality calories right after the flight. Finally, the Salmon Hometown Chitose Aquarium offers a scenic way to stretch your legs.

  • The New Street Chitose Ramen, Cost – $$ – $$$

Start in Sapporo

More determined travelers will want to make the 40-minute trip to Sapporo to start their Hokkaido experience on the right foot. Susukino is one of Japan’s best-known entertainment districts, and it’s a great place to release restless post-flight energy. There are malls, restaurants, and bars all over the neighborhood to keep travelers entertained. Sapporo Ramen Haruka is a great choice for food while Susukino and Nikka Bar is a great choice for drinks.

Day 2: Discover the lavender fields and the cellar of Furano

Since the 1940s, lavender has been grown at Furano’s Fields. In the 1960s and 1970s, cheaper lavender began to arrive in Japan, so it was no longer necessary to harvest lavender here. The result is that it was able to develop continuously and is now a must-see tourist attraction in Hokkaido.

In the middle of the lavender fields is the Furano winery. Here visitors can discover a collection of local wines made from the grapes grown in the region. With a climate like the south of France, it is an ideal location for a winery.

Related: 8 Things You Can’t See Anywhere But Japan

Day 3: Explore Sounkyo Daisetsuzan National Park

In the central part of Hokkaido, travelers can find Daisetsuzan National Park. The park is Japan’s largest mountain park and home to the Ishikawa and Toachi rivers. None like the “roof of Hokkaido”, this park is home to the Tokachi mountain range, an area of ​​active volcanoes, deep canyons and stunning ridge views. There is so much for travelers to explore and discover in this park!

Day 4: Hike through Shiretoko National Park

The second national park on this route is Shiretoko National Park. The park originates from the Ainu word “Shiri Etoku” which means “a distant corner of the earth” which is the perfect way to describe this park. This rugged landscape was formed by volcanic activity and is now home to a wide variety of wildlife. There are many endangered raptors that inhabit this park and are at the top of the food chain here. This park is a World Natural Heritage Site and it is a must-see place for nature-loving travelers.


Day 5: Explore around Lake Toya

During the fifth day of this Hokkaido trip, travelers should take the day to explore Lake Toya. Whether travelers simply want to relax on its shores or stroll through the scenic landscape that surrounds it, there is something for everyone. The lake is not the only attraction in the region. Travelers can also experience the fun Mount Usu Ropeway, the scenic Showashinzan Volcanic Area, and the Toyako Forest Museum.

Related: Basho Wayfarer: Hiking Japan’s Oldest and Most Beautiful Trail

Day 6: Visit Otaru before returning to Sapporo

This former colonial trading center in Hokkaido, Otaru is full of canals and Western-style architecture. The canals are still used today, but mainly by travelers who walk along or cross the canals. Otaru is also home to harbor museums, numerous shops and trendy restaurants.

Day 7: A last day in Sapporo to relax before leaving the island.

Before leaving Hokkaido, travelers can enjoy Sapporo once again. One place that many travelers enjoy is visiting the Sapporo Beer Museum. Travelers to Asia have probably seen the famous Sapporo beers in convenience store coolers. This is a great opportunity to see where it all began for the famous Sapporo beer. Other places to visit would be the stunning view from Mount Okura Observatory or Odori Park with so much to see as travelers pass through it.


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