12 days in Hokkaido Itinerary

12 days in Hokkaido Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Hokkaido holiday planner
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Noboribetsu — 1 night

Perhaps the island's best-known hot spring resort, Noboribetsu has a long history of tourism.
For traveler tips, more things to do, photos, and more tourist information, you can read our Noboribetsu trip planner.

Chitose to Noboribetsu is an approximately 1-hour car ride. You can also take a train; or take a bus. Traveling from Chitose in December, expect a bit warmer with lows of -1°C in Noboribetsu. On the 13th (Tue), you're off to Hakodate.
Parks · Outdoors · Shopping · Nature
Find places to stay Dec 12 — 13:

Hakodate — 2 nights

City of Lights

A gateway to the island, Hakodate has gained a reputation for its waterfront attractions, its proximity to some of the island's most popular natural sites, and its seafood.
On the 13th (Tue), stop by Kanemori Red Brick Warehouse, appreciate the history behind Hokkaido Dai Ippo no Chi Monument, then take in the awesome beauty at Mount Hakodate, then take in the architecture and atmosphere at St.John's Church Hakodate, and finally take a stroll through Motomachi. On the 14th (Wed), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: steep yourself in history at The Old Public Hall of Hakodate Ward, make a trip to Hachimanzaka, then don't miss a visit to Goryokaku Tower, then admire the striking features of Goryokaku Park, and finally browse the eclectic array of goods at Hakodate Morning Market.

To find other places to visit, photos, maps, and other tourist information, you can read our Hakodate tour site.

You can drive from Noboribetsu to Hakodate in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train. In December, daily temperatures in Hakodate can reach 3°C, while at night they dip to -3°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 15th (Thu) early enough to fly to Otaru.
Historic Sites · Parks · Shopping · Nature
Find places to stay Dec 13 — 15:

Otaru — 1 night

Town of Hills

The port city of Otaru has long attracted domestic visitors, drawn in by the city's many historic buildings, and has started to garner international attention, too.
Kick off your visit on the 15th (Thu): hit the slopes at Kiroro Snow World. Keep things going the next day: hunt for treasures at Sankaku Market, then contemplate the long history of The Site of Temiya Line, and then explore the activities along Otaru Canal.

For more things to do, maps, traveler tips, and other tourist information, go to the Otaru trip itinerary builder website.

Fly from Hakodate to Otaru in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a train. When traveling from Hakodate in December, plan for a bit cooler days in Otaru, with highs around 0°C, while nights are about the same with lows around -2°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 16th (Fri) early enough to go by car to Furano.
Parks · Winter Sports · Outdoors · Shopping
Side Trip
Find places to stay Dec 15 — 16:

Furano — 2 nights

Situated in the center of the island, Furano has become known for its idyllic rural landscape, and the drastic changes it experiences as seasons shift.
To see traveler tips, ratings, where to stay, and tourist information, use the Furano road trip site.

You can drive from Otaru to Furano in 2.5 hours. Other options are to take a train; or take a bus. Traveling from Otaru in December, plan for little chillier nights in Furano, with lows around -8°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 18th (Sun) to allow enough time to drive to Asahikawa.
Parks · Winter Sports · Outdoors
Find places to stay Dec 16 — 18:

Asahikawa — 2 nights

Perched on the confluence of four rivers and surrounded by green hills, Asahikawa combines a modern city experience with the pristine nature nearby.
On the 18th (Sun), admire the masterpieces at Asahikawa Museum of Art, then meet the residents at Asahiyama Zoo, and then find something for the whole family at Asahikawa Ramen Village. Keep things going the next day: don't miss a visit to Patchwork no Michi, then take a memorable drive along Ken & Mary Tree, and then make a trip to Asahikawa Station.

To see ratings, traveler tips, other places to visit, and tourist information, read our Asahikawa travel route website.

Traveling by car from Furano to Asahikawa takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or take a bus. December in Asahikawa sees daily highs of -2°C and lows of -5°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 20th (Tue) to allow time to drive to Sapporo.
Scenic Drive · Theme Parks · Outdoors · Parks
Side Trip
Find places to stay Dec 18 — 20:

Sapporo — 3 nights

CIty of Ramen

A modern, bustling city known for its beer brewery, Sapporo attracts millions of visitors with its Snow Festival, during which elaborate ice and snow sculptures are exhibited all over town.
Attractions like Odori Park and Mt. Moiwa make great kid-friendly stops. There's still lots to do: take a stroll around Sapporo Underground Shopping Centre Aurora Town, take some stellar pictures from Sapporo TV Tower, fly down the slopes at Okurayama Lookout, and make a trip to Tanukikoji Shopping Street.

To see reviews, photos, maps, and more tourist information, read our Sapporo online tour builder.

Traveling by car from Asahikawa to Sapporo takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or take a bus. Expect a daytime high around 0°C in December, and nighttime lows around -2°C. On the 23rd (Fri), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can fly back home.
Parks · Historic Sites · Nature · Shopping
Find places to stay Dec 20 — 23:

Hokkaido travel guide

Bodies of Water · Landmarks · Parks
The northernmost of Japan's big four islands, Hokkaido seems a world apart from the rest of the country, with nearly a quarter of its total land area and only five percent of the population. To the Japanese, this island is synonymous with photogenic mountains and abundant wildlife. To most foreign visitors, a vacation in Hokkaido means exploring an area reminiscent of northern Europe, abundant in waterfalls, hot springs, volcanoes, mossy canyons, and peaceful lakes. Hokkaido also boasts the world's longest railway tunnel, the only land connection between this and Japan's main island Honshu.