Top things to do in Central Hokkaidō

Top Choice Bistro in Niseko

Musu Bar + Bistro

Musu offers great food, sweet service, and a lovely airy dining experience, plus easily the best cocktail menu in Niseko, with treats like the Yuzu Negroni (¥1400) or the Climber's Club (¥1400), the latter using a s…
Top Choice Ice Cream in Otaru

Kita-no Aisukurīmu-ya-san

Housed in a converted warehouse that was built in 1892, just back from the canal, this legendary Otaru ice-cream parlour scoops up some seriously 'special' ice cream flavours, such as wasabi, beer, and natto. The ik…
Top Choice Canal in Otaru

Otaru Canal

Historic Otaru canal is lined with warehouses from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. This was a time when traditional Japanese architecture was infused with Western-style building techniques, so some of the bu…
Barbecue in Niseko

Niseko Loft Club

Down the road from the Annupuri slopes, Loft Club glitters with fairy lights and the warm, glowing promise of a filling meal washed down with beer and lively conversation. The speciality here is yakiniku (grill-it-y…
Italian in Niseko

Niseko Pizza

This authentic family-run pizzeria headed by the affable Cezar does thin-crust, wood-fired pizzas with a mouth-watering variety of toppings (plus pastas and steaks). Bonus: it delivers. In central Hirafu, downhill f…
Soba in Niseko

Sobadokoro Rakuichi

Niseko's most famous noodle shop is also famously hard to find, though its secluded location (accessed via a wooden boardwalk) is a big part of the appeal. The other part is watching chef Tatsuri Rai behind the coun…
Mountain in Tōya-ko

Usu-zan

Here is a rare chance to bear witness to modern mountain-making: Shōwa Shin-zan (昭和新山; 398m) – whose name means 'the new mountain of the Shōwa period' – arose from a wheat field following the 1943 eruption of Usu-za…
Hot Springs in Noboribetsu Onsen

Jigoku-dani

A short walk uphill from Noboribetsu town reveals what may await us in the afterlife: sulphurous gases, hissing vents and seemingly blood-stained rocks. Jigoku-dani, which literally means 'Hell Valley', is part of t…
Museum in Tōya-ko

Volcano Science Museum

The eruptions at Uzu-san were among the first to be recorded by modern means (and work here significantly advanced science in early detection). Here you can see video footage of eruptions in action, and before and a…
Cultural Centre in Jōzankei

Ainu Culture Promotion Centre

Unlike other museums, where artefacts are kept behind glass, exhibitions here consist of replicas, handmade by members of Sapporo's Ainu community using their own family heirlooms as models. As a result, you can tou…