In 2014, Hokkaido (北海道, Hokkaidō) defended its number 1 position on the annual Prefectural Attractiveness Ranking (conducted by the Brand Research Institute) for the 6th year running, virtually making it a must-visit if you have time. First inhabited by the Ainu people, Hokkaido has its own very unique culture.
Some of the most delicious food in Japan can be found in Hokkaido, including seafood, miso ramen, agricultural products, and meat (especially mutton and lamb).
In terms of places to visit, Hokkaido isn’t just the winter resort many believe it to be, although the slopes in the Niseko area are among the best ski resorts in the world. Escape the heat and enjoy the beautiful lavender fields in Furano in the summer, while the fun Asahiyama Zoo and stunning Shiretoko Peninsula are just two of the many popular tourist destinations of Hokkaido.
Enjoy snow sculptures and an exciting ice slide at the Onuma Hakodate Snow and Ice Festival, held on the first weekend of February...
Monbetsu, in north eastern Hokkaido, hosts an annual drift ice festival in February. The event features some incredible ice sculptures..
Otaru Snow Light Path Festival is just a quick trip from Sapporo and offers a romantic romp through a candlelit snowscape.