Planners Guide
Sapporo's 10 selling points
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Il sales points in Sapporo
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 1. Hokkaido boasts convenient access

Hokkaido is the northernmost island of the Japanese archipelago, located east of Asia. This island is close to the continent and connected with major Asian cities by direct flights. The one-way trip from Hokkaido to Taipei is five hours and to Seoul is three hours.
Domestically, the island is directly linked to 22 cities nationwide. The routes to Tokyo, Nagoya and Osaka are particularly convenient due to frequent flights. It is one and a half hours to Tokyo and two hours to Osaka.


Direct flight destinations and fight time
(overseas access)
  Time required from major cities
(access within Japan)
Seoul approx. 3 hrs.
Shanghai approx. 4 hrs.
Taipei approx. 4 hrs.
Hong Kong approx. 5 hrs.
 
Tokyo approx. 1.5 hrs.
Nagoya approx. 2 hrs.
Osaka approx. 2 hrs.
Fukuoka approx. 2.5 hrs.

 2. Clean and safe streets

With a population of more than 1.9 million, Sapporo is the largest city north of Tokyo. Nonetheless, the city is relatively safe; its crime rate is lower than that of other cities of similar size. Even in Susukino, an entertainment district, it is not very dangerous for a woman to walk the streets alone. The downtown area around Odori Park is also easy to get around because of the systematically organized street grid, which is easy to follow for tourists. The clean and beautiful streetscapes befit the city that is called "Europe in Asia".


 3. Friendly people

Hokkaido residents are often characterized as friendly people. Even in large cities like Sapporo, local people are really friendly and willing to talk to people they have just met. Historically, Hokkaido was first developed by people coming from all over Japan, which may have resulted in the creation of an environment welcoming and helpful to people from outside. Currently, when events are held with the attendance of many foreign tourists, local residents serve as volunteer guides to help them. This makes it easy for people who cannot speak Japanese to get around the city.


 4. Great natural environment and urban service

The rich natural environment is one of the most significant aspects of Sapporo.
Driving one or two hours from the city center, you can reach suburbs featuring a vast wilderness. Even within the city, there are many forests and mountains where foxes, brown bears, deer and other wild animals live in large numbers. You can enjoy the magnificent view of mountains, which are covered with verdant greenery in summer and white snow in winter. Sapporo also has the largest park area in Japan. Sapporo is truly remarkable for possessing full urban functions and retaining rich greenery even in its central area.


 5. Refreshing climate

Sapporo is also characterized by the refreshing summer climate. Although Hokkaido is part of Asia where it is generally humid, it has no rainy season due to its location in the sub-arctic zone. Because of the low humidity level, summer in Hokkaido is dry and comfortable, even when the temperature is high. The snowfall is also significantly large in Hokkaido, and Sapporo is the only city in the world that has a population of 1.8 million and 5-meter annual snowfall. Because of the clean environment, it is possible to observe diamond dust on a chilly winter morning.


 6. Beautiful scenery - Switzerland in Asia

Hokkaido has many mountains that are covered with dry powdery snow and look clear against the cloudless sky in winter. In summer, the inner mountains called "the roof of Hokkaido" appear dominant with snow atop. Because of its beautiful landscapes, Hokkaido is sometimes referred to as "Switzerland in Asia." Gently sloping hills extend in the piedmont area that is reminiscent of landscapes in Europe. The hills are colored light green in spring, vivid flower colors in summer, golden color of wheat in autumn and silvery white in winter. These inner areas are easily accessible from Sapporo either by car or JR train, and it is possible to make a day trip.

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 7. A full range of facilities

Sapporo is renowned not only as the political and economic center of Hokkaido, but also as a tourist city representing Japan. A variety of accommodations and other facilities have been established. The Sapporo Convention Center, opened in 2003, has facilities and equipment accommodating various needs, from large conferences attended by as many as 2,500 people to small group gatherings. The Sapporo Dome, which is generally used as a baseball / soccer stadium, can also serve as the venue of large-scale exhibitions and trade fairs. Sapporo has a full concert hall, multipurpose indoor facilities and many other facilities. Moreover, major hotels in the city have banquet halls and conference rooms, such as Royton Sapporo with a hall accommodating groups up to 2,000 persons.

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 8. Delicious Hokkaido foods

Hokkaido is also known as a producer of good-tasting foods. Surrounded by the sea on all four sides, this is where different sea currents come up against each other. Because of this, Hokkaido boasts abundant delicious seafood. Hokkaido's inner area also produces a variety of agricultural and dairy products known for their tastiness. These delicacies of Hokkaido are brought to its central city Sapporo, making it possible to fully appreciate seasonal taste in Sapporo throughout the year.
Sapporo's most famous delicacies include ramen, sushi, Genghis Khan (lamb barbeque), beer and soup curry, and so on.

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 9. Hands-on tourist activities

Sapporo suggests a variety of hands-on tourist activities. In summer, you can enjoy a variety of outdoor activities, including fishing, horseback riding, mountaineering, wall-climbing and mountain biking. It is also fun to experience winter sports, such as skiing and snowboarding. For people who do not play sports, other types of activities are offered throughout the year, such as fruit-picking, nature watching, ballooning, smelt fishing and snowmobiling.


 10. Ainu culture

Hokkaido's indigenous people Ainu have developed a unique culture. Many of the geographic names in Hokkaido have their origins in the Ainu language, and Sapporo is said to mean "large and dry river" in Ainu. Its culture that worships nature as god and beautiful folk art continue to fascinate many people today, and there is more and more research on Ainu culture these days. Hokkaido is the only place in the world where you can see their culture up close.


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