A 2-Day Trip to Enjoy the Best of Fantastic Otaru
Otaru is known as an easily accessible sightseeing spot even within the vast prefecture of Hokkaido. It is a 30-minute rapid-train trip or about a one-hour car ride from Sapporo. The Otaru Canal was built to carry cargo from the Port of Otaru, which prospered as a center of distribution in Hokkaido. The canal and the surrounding stone warehouses still have a nostalgic atmosphere from over 100 years ago, and continue to impress visitors. The best time to view the Otaru Canal is probably during the time from sundown to nighttime. The stone pavement is lit by gas lamps, and the lights of the city reflect in the water. The street that is bustling with tourists during the daytime transforms and has a different feel. If you’re visiting Otaru, you should definitely experience the magical atmosphere, which will make you feel almost as if you’ve wandered into a fairy tale. You can stroll around the former warehouse buildings and the many restaurants and souvenir shops, and then relax and enjoy the night view after sundown. You are sure to make some unforgettable memories.
The sightseeing spots in Otaru are all gathered closely together, so you will be able to thoroughly enjoy the best of Otaru on a 2-day trip. On the first day, we recommend taking a stroll around Otaru’s main street, Sakaimachi Dori Shopping Street. The “Kitaichi Glass Sangokan” near Meruhen Kosaten is a glass product shop representative of Otaru, the city of glass. After you’ve enjoyed the colorful world of glasswork, you can sit down and rest at the attached Kitaichi Hall.
Next, you can enjoy the different sounds of various music boxes at the “Otaru Music Box Museum” and choose some souvenirs at “Gin no Kane No. 1 Building.” There are also many famous confectioneries nearby, so you can purchase some sweets to-go and spend a blissful moment gazing at the Otaru Canal.
For accommodation, we recommend “Hotel Sonia Otaru,” which is located along the Otaru Canal. You might forget that you are in Japan, thanks to the beautiful view of the canal from the windows and the European-style interior design. After enjoying the hotel’s famous breakfast, you should take a stroll around the canal area. Going on a cruise on the canal is also popular, as you can admire the cityscape from the canal. You can stop by “Otaru Unga Shokudo” for lunch. Here, you will be able to enjoy various Hokkaido foods to your heart’s content.
If you have time, you might also want to rent a car or ride a bus to the suburbs and enjoy the Michelin one-star view from Mt. Tengu, or refresh yourself at Asarigawa Onsen. You can casually go on a 2-day trip to Otaru and experience various charms of the city. We highly recommend trying it.