I was standing on top of a snowy mountain, digging my feet in the snow to avoid sliding down. My stomach was full of fluttering butterflies. I wasn’t afraid, I knew I would fall soon after I let go of my grip. Instead, I felt happy, the feeling of standing up to myself and thinking I can do it even though I knew I couldn’t. Maybe it was the adrenaline, or maybe it was the majestic view of the sprawling city painted white with snow. With these emotions I attempted my first Ski experience last winter with countless falls sprinkled with fleeting moments of success. I am glad, I live in Hokkaido, which becomes a big polar playground every winter, where you can come to bury you worries deep in the snow. If you are a skiing/snowboarding pro or a novice, there is something for everyone here. This is my list of the top eight ski resorts in Hokkaido where you can slide your way to white happiness.
Hokkaido is one of the snowiest places on Earth. As winter arrives, the landscape of Hokkaido starts losing its colour to prepare for a white canvas. First, the mountains turn white, announcing the beginning of the makeover. Then, the trees get covered by white pixie dust, and inch by inch snow piles on every night leaving a glistening carpet in the morning. I love winter in Hokkaido, and the snow has a way of making everything look beautiful. A sunny morning after fresh snow fall looks like a paradise, even the mundane red post-box looks awfully cute covered in snow. I am not the only who admires the winter in Hokkaido. People from all corners of the world visit Hokkaido to enjoy the beauty of its mountains and the adventure of its ski slopes. In the first blog of winter special series, I will be talking about things you must do this winter in Hokkaido, the land of goddess Kuraokami. (more…)
“No spring nor summer beauty hath such grace as I have seen in one autumnal face.” – John Donne. Unlike Sakura (cherry blossom), which comes in Southern Japan first, Koyo (autumn leaves) starts in Northern Japan. Autumn in Hokkaido arrived mid September on the highlands and moves towards the southern side of the country. It slowly changes every leaf to a colourful flower. In this harvest season, Japanese tradition is to go out for Momijigari (Viewing of autumn leaves) also called as Kanpukai in Hokkaido. With its sprawling national parks and lakes, Hokkaido has many breathtaking locations for Kanpukai. Below is an autumn travelling guide for your trip to Hokkaido with information on transport and the best seasonal seafood. (more…)
“The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page” – Saint Augustine. Sapporo is a beautiful chapter in this book that should not be skipped when you visit Hokkaido. Sapporo Sightseeing guide is second in the series of Sapporo travel blogs listing twelve of my favorite places in the city I call home. Spending a few days in Sapporo will give you enough time to explore these sites as they are all accessible by public transport.
Hokkaido has a rather short summer in comparison to the mainland Japan. This is when the mountains and valleys come alive with colourful flowers after being buried under snow for almost 6 months. Hokkadians too come out of their winter cocoon and go out to experience nature’s beauty. Furano and Biei in central Hokkaido are two popular destinations among the locals and tourists in summer. The region is full of beautiful flower fields, impressive landscapes and humble terrains. On one such hot weekend in July, we too went on a day trip to Furano and Biei. (more…)