30 Footage That Will Make You Wish to Go to Hokkaido


I didn’t like Hokkaido the primary time I visited—no, I hated it. In reality, I believed on the time that my first journey to the island is likely to be my final to Japan as an entire. That was how little love I had for Hokkaido again then, in early 2015.

I keep in mind getting within the taxi from Jozankei to the airport (among the many many issues I disliked about Hokkaido was its comparatively terrible public transport), and feeling excited to depart.

After all, I’ve simply wrapped up my sixth journey to the island. So, what modified?

Step one, for me, was realizing that Hokkaido shouldn’t be actually Japan. Effectively, not exactly. Mockingly, I noticed this in Hakodate, the place I’d stayed two nights throughout my maiden voyage, and which had been my favourite cease primarily due to how far more Japanese it appeared that Sapporo and in all places else.

As I sat atop the Mt. Hakodate lookout one gentle night in late September 2017, gazing down on Japan’s finest “evening view” (which had been completely obscured by fog on my first journey, due to course it had), I noticed that in an effort to admire Hokkaido for what it was, I needed to let go of what it wasn’t.

That proved simpler mentioned than performed. The following summer time, once I returned for the third time with the ostensible objective of traipsing via the lavender fields simply south of Asahikawa in central Hokkaido, destiny dealt me an extremely unfortunate hand. Heavy rain would fall practically daily of the week in mid-July I used to be there, despite Hokkaido usually being dry round that point.

Though my misfortune was not sufficient to completely dissuade me from touring to Hokkaido once more, the following journey I had in thoughts was an incidental one: Just a few days on the tail-end of the epic, six-week sakura sojourn I had deliberate for 2020. (That didn’t occur, for apparent causes.)

Effectively, not less than not in the course of the Worst Yr in Historical past™. In 2021, fortunately, I used to be residing in Japan, leaving me unbeholden to the nation’s years-long border closure; I noticed the cherry blossoms in Sapporo and Hakodate (the place it was, not surprisingly, probably the most spectacular) as I’d deliberate to do the yr earlier than.

Afterwards, I keep in mind flying from Sapporo again to Osaka’s Itami Airport excited, for the primary time, on the prospect of going again to Hokkaido once more sooner or later.

The concept had been to return again the next February, to right the disappointing (and, I may see at this level, poorly-planned) first journey I’d taken seven years earlier. By that point, sadly, Japan will nonetheless closed—and I not resided there, leaving me locked out. So I pushed that journey (which did find yourself being transcendental) off one other yr.

A profitable snow season swing via Hokkaido left only one main merchandise on my bucket listing for the merchandise: Autumn—and you most likely know the way that went.

Now, I totally notice that Japan leans closely (too closely?) on the truth that it has 4 seasons; Hokkaido usually doesn’t, so I most likely shouldn’t use this line of reasoning. However finishing this specific sequence actually leveled up my love for Japan’s northernmost island in a approach I undoubtedly by no means noticed coming.

Definitely not sat alongside the chilly coast of Otaru 9 Februarys in the past, tossing a frozen starfish towards the icy sea and I questioned what on earth I used to be doing there.






















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