Hokkaido's capital, Sapporo, is served very well by New Chitose Airport. Only a relatively short train journey from the airport to Sapporo (with some great views on the way) it's an incredible city with a wealth of attractions, parks, and some of Japan's finest cuisine.
A modern-day metropolis, Sapporo is blessed with everything a visitor needs and expects from a visit to Japan. Takino Snow World, which opens in winter, is extremely popular with snow sports fans. The 350-meter-long family slope is ideal for skiing novices and families.
Moerenuma Park is also popular with families and has a playground, sports field, and various equipment designed by the legendary Japanese-American artist Isamu Noguchi. Another major, and centrally located, the park is Odori Park which takes up a mammoth kilometer and a half of the city itself. It also acts as the location for the renowned Sapporo Snow Festival every year which attracts a multitude of visitors from Japan and around the globe.
No visit to Hokkaido would be complete without sampling some of the area's much-loved soul food which includes the local ramen (which often includes dairy products) and fresh seafood caught locally. The crab, uni (sea urchin), and donburi (a rice bowl with seafood toppings) are a gourmand's paradise.
Also accessible from New Chitose Airport is the thriving ski resort town of Niseko which offers some of the best skiing and winter sports in the country. The charming seaside town of Otaru isn't far from Sapporo and is known for its legendary local sake and incredible cuisine. The Otaru Canal area is beautiful, with shops and cafes lining the banks of the river.
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