Tokyo may be Japan’s sprawling metropole and the country’s political, economic and cultural hub (we do not hide that we like Tokyo a lot, too), but we pride ourselves on being located in Hokkaido. Its islands are renowned for their breathtaking scenery and their amazing nature. Let us be honest. Where else in the world do mountain ranges and volcanoes alternate with large green coastal plains? This northernmost region is the bread basket of Japan. Hokkaido leads the country’s agriculture, proudly tops the production of most crops and staples (rice, wheat, potato, beans, vegetables,…), and is especially famous for its dairy products.
This is not all. Hokkaido has a unique modern history, which is on full display in cities as Hakodate and Otaru. Its history is, of course, much older. In Sapporo station and in multiple locations throughout the islands, you will find references to the Ainu, believed to be the original inhabitants of the island. Although the latter have been largely assimilated into Japanese society, there has been a recent revival of interest and research into the Ainu language, their culture, and their lifestyle.
The city of Sapporo is correctly known for its excellent food (there are several fish markets located in the city). Enjoy seafood dishes at more than reasonable prices, go for ramen noodles or soba (their buckwheat equivalent), or have a good time in many of the relaxing cafes and jazz bars. Many of the city’s districts have places of entertainment for everybody’s liking.
Whether you are a foodie, a lover of the outdoors, a history buff, or else, you are sure to be happy here!