• The high-rise hotel that uses Hokkaido timber

    On October 1, Mitsubishi Estate Co., Ltd. (Tokyo) opened ‘The Royal Park Canvas Sapporo Odori Koen’ (Odori Nishi 1-chome, Chuo-ku, Sapporo), a hotel that uses timber produced in Hokkaido. The top t...

  • "Shiretoko Sustainable Week" was held from October 1–10. It was organized by an action committee composed of entities including the Shiretoko Nature Foundation (Shari Town), and initiated to coincide with a pilot program for tourism amidst the Shiretoko Peninsula restrictions on private car usage. Centering around the Shiretoko National Park Nature Center, a diverse range of events were featured, including trekking tours, lectures, and art events.

  • The multirole transport "Lavender Train" was newly constructed this year, and on September 22 in the Northern Hokkaido city of Wakkanai, it operated in public for the first time on the JR Soya Line as an express train. After operating until October 29, it will be replaced by the pink exterior "Hamanasu Train" in November. In autumn amidst the trees changing colors, the Soya Line will feature alluringly colored trains.

  • JR Hokkaido’s special ‘Yuhi (sunset) Norokko’ sightseeing train operated for a limited three-day period from September 27–29, enabling passengers to enjoy the Kushiro Wetlands lit by the setting sun, from the windows of the train. The first day of services was blessed with fine weather as passengers photographed the wetlands, colored orange by the light.

  • All Nippon Airways Co., Ltd.’s Airbus A380 (520 seats), the world’s largest double-decker passenger aircraft took-off and landed at New Chitose Airport for the first time on September 19, during a sightseeing flight. The livery of the aircraft, which is approx. 73 m long and 80 m wide, is designed in the image of a sea turtle, and is known fondly as ‘Flying Honu’ (flying sea turtle). Approximately 370 passengers enjoyed the one-and-a-half-hour flight over Hokkaido, while many aircraft enthusiasts gathered at the airport to see it.

  • Rusutsu Resort, which is operated by Kamori Kanko Co., Ltd. (Sapporo), has received the ‘Winter Travel Hot Destination of the Year 2021’ award for the first time, at an international winter sports expo held in Beijing, China from September 2 to 7. Looking ahead to after the COVID-19 pandemic has been brought under control, the company hopes the award will lead to opportunities in the ski market in China, ahead of the Beijing Winter Olympics.

  • The "lake bottom railroad" in the town of Shikaoi is garnering attention from both inside and outside of the town. The railroad extends from the lakeside to the offing of Lake Shikaribetsu in the town, which is located in Eastern Hokkaido's Tokachi region. When a major Hokkaido travel agency introduced the railroad as the Grand Prix award for a photograph contest for beautiful summer scenery, it became a hot topic across the Internet. Numerous tourists have come to see it.

  • The general meeting of The Hokkaido Executive Committee of the ‘Adventure Travel World Summit (ATWS)’, an international event for experienced-based tourism, was held online on September 6th. The executive committee decided to re-bid to host ATWS in 2023, at the earliest. “We want to unite and move forward,” emphasized Ebina Hiroya, vice-chair of the executive committee and Mayor of Kushiro City.

  • The town of Oketo in Eastern Hokkaido's Okhotsk Region completed building the five overnight rental trailer houses that were being constructed within the grounds of "Oketo Katsuyama Onsen Yuu-Yu", the town's only hot spring facility. The trailer houses will be available for overnight rental starting on October 1. The facilities will take reservations for October and November starting on September 10. This new tourism resource launch was prompted in part by outdoor activities growing in popularity out of the desire to avoid crowds in closed-in spaces amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, and also in part by an expected continuation of the increase in families and individual travelers even after the pandemic subsides.

  • Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, cycling tourism has been growing in popularity as a leisure activity that does not incorporate "crowded, closed spaces". And in the Northern Hokkaido city of Wakkanai as well, tourism organizations and community associations are expanding into tourism services that utilize bicycles. Travel packages that combine cycling at the "northernmost tip of Japan" and the grand, scenic panoramas of Mt. Rishiri with promotions for using the Soya railway line are being offered in an attempt to expand usage.