Attractions

Nature Reserve in Rishiri-Rebun-Sarobetsu National Park

Sarobetsu Wetlands

Part of Rishiri-Rebun-Sarobetsu National Park, these marshlands are 40km southwest of Wakkanai. Fields of wild flowers bloom here in summer, which can be appreciated from boardwalks built over the marsh. Infrequent …
Museum in Asahikawa

Kawamura Kaneto Ainu Memorial Hall

Built in 1916 and thus just a few years past its 100th anniversary, this museum is less a collection of artefacts (though it has those too) and more the story of a local Ainu family desperate to keep the old ways al…
Gorge in Sōunkyō Onsen

Sōunkyō

Sōunkyō is a string of gorges 15km long formed by the Ishikari River, the very same Ishikari River that empties out into the Sea of Japan just north of Sapporo. A few kilometres southeast of town on Rte 39, there's …
Viewpoint in Rebun-tō

Sukai-misaki

This is the prettiest of the island's capes, where the waters are an almost tropical blue, framed by craggy rocks and grassy slopes. The Rebun-tō Traverse passes here; it's also accessible by road. As elsewhere on t…
Farm in Furano

Farm Tomita

Until snow falls in October, Tomita's fields are covered in a rainbow array of flowers. With the mountains of Daisetsuzan National Park as a backdrop, this is one of the most photographed spots in Hokkaidō. It's par…
Brewery in Asahikawa

Otokoyama Sake Brewery Museum

Otokoyama, one of Japan's oldest and most esteemed breweries, was founded in Hyōgo prefecture centuries ago but since 1899 its sake has been made here in Asahikawa – all the better to take advantage of that mountain…
Zoo in Asahikawa

Asahiyama Zoo

Known Japan-wide, the country's northernmost zoo attracts visitors with its stars from cold climates: polar bears and penguins. More interesting to travellers might be the enclosures featuring Hokkaidō native specie…
Market in Wakkanai

Fukukō-ichiba

About a 10-minute walk south of JR Wakkanai Station, this complex has restaurants, souvenir shops and the Minato-no-yu Onsen. It's designed to evoke the Wakkanai of bygone days. Poke around to see some historical ph…
Landmark in Wakkanai

Sōya-misaki

Thirty kilometres east of Wakkanai, Sōya-misaki is mainland Japan's northernmost point, where walkers and cyclists traversing the full length of Japan either start or finish. Buses depart six times daily from bus st…
Landmark in Wakkanai

Noshappu-misaki

The second most northern point in mainland Japan, this cape is a pleasant walk (45 minutes) or bike ride (20 minutes) north of town. On the way, look out for the kelp-drying yards along the shoreline. If the weather…