20 Outdoor Activites To Do In Hokkaido

With sea, mountains and rivers, there are various outdoor activities to do in Hokkaido. Why not try your hand at any of the activity that appeals to you?

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1. Catching Fresh Abalone 

Okushiri is an island located in the southern west of Hokkaido. You can try catching abalone not in the tourist attraction places but where the fishermen actually catch them. It will be quite an experience testing your fishing skills  in Hokkaido. 

HP: unimaru.com/?cat=8 (Japanese Only)

Address: Okushiri, Okushiri-cho, Okushiri-gun, Hokkaido (Google Map)

2. Peeling Sea Urchin

Rebun Island is at the northernmost tip of Hokkaido.  A restaurant Kaisen Dokoro Kafuka is just 5-minute walk from the island's ferry terminal where you can try your hands on peeling raw sea urchin from its spiny shell. If you love this seafood why not try for an ultimately fresh sea urchin experience?

HP: funadomari.jp/hpgen/HPB/entries/2.html (Japanese Only)

Address: 558-1 Tonnai, Kafuka-mura, Rebun-cho, Rebun-gun, Hokkaido (Google Map)

3. Catching Sea Urchin 

Rishiri Island is off the northern coast of Japan Sea. Here you can catch fresh sea urchins like the local fishermen. You can also savor freshly caught sea urchins. Again, not to be missed if you are a sea urchin lover.

HP: kankou.rishiri.jp/new/uni.html (Japanese Only)

Address: Shakunin Kafukamura, Rebun-cho, Rebun-gun, Hokkaido (Google Map)

4. Sea Kayaking 

Robert Thomson/Flickr

Shiretoko is a conserved area where you can enjoy sea kayaking. Feel the energetic vibe of wild adventure as you row out to the sea with your friends. 

HP: www.shiretoko-guide.com/activity/ (Japanese Only)

Address: Shiretoko Outdoor Guide Center, Shiretoko National Park  〒099-4356 Iwaobetsu, Shari-cho, Shari-gun, Hokkaido (Google Map)

5. Hot Air Balloon Rides


It takes approximately a couple of hours by car from Sapporo to Niseko Town where hot air balloon flight experience is offered. You can ride on a hot air balloon and see the vast landscape of Hokkaido from air. Balloon ride is available either early in the morning or early in the evening. Be sure to book in advance. 

HP: www.niseko-northern.com/en/ (Enlgish)

Address: 480-1 Niseko, Niseko-cho, Abuta-gun, Hokkaido (Google Map)

6. Lake Kayaking at Lake Shikotsu

The quality of water at Lake Shikotsu is reputed to be the best in Japan. The clarity of lake water is so high you would feel as if you are kayaking in the air.

HP: ooa-guide.com/english/index.html

Address: Kinoko Oukoku, 637-1 Otakiku Sangaitaki-cho, Date-shi, Hokkaido (Google Map)

7. Horse Riding

Horses are bred in many parts of Hokkaido. You can have a unique experience riding a horse in forests, at the sea shore, and by the river at this place in Abashiri. Why not saddle up and go for a ride when you are in Abashiri? 

HP: ww6.et.tiki.ne.jp(Japanese Only)

Address: 225 Mokoto, Abashiri-shi, Hokkaido (Google Map)

8.  Riding Torokko Trains

Bifuka is a town inbetween Wakkanai and Asahikawa. Here in Bifuka there is a "Torokko Kingdomトロッコ王国美深" where you can drive a torokko train with engines. Driving through the forest with a torokko train is an uplifting experience not to be missed.  

HP: www.town.bifuka.hokkaido.jp/cms/section/soumu/qlmcaj00000056xy.html (Japanese Only)

Address: Niupu, Bifuka, Nakagawa-gun, Hokkaido (Google Map)

9. Airlifting

Lake Shikaribetsu is a mysterious lake surrounded by wild woods of Daisetsuzan National Park in Tokachi. Here you can enjoy 'Air Trip', a recreational airlift over the lake and forests with a wire.   

HP: www.nature-center.jp/menu-top.html (Japanese Only)

Address: Kitaurimaku, Shikaoi-cho, Katou-gun, Hokkaido (Google Map)

10. Canyoning

Canyoning is a river sports of hiking down a canyon. Canyoning in Hidaka-cho involves jumping into plunge basins and sliding down small waterfalls. Quite an exciting experience for sure.

HP: www.rafting-hoa.co.jp/en/activities/canyoning/

Address: 132 Chisaka, Hidaka-cho, Saru-gun, Hokkaido (Google Map)

11. Rafting

Rafting is an outdoor recreational sports riding on an inflated raft with a group of people and paddling down the river under the instructions of a guide. Rafting down Mu River, one of the fiercest river in the nation is invigorating.

HP: www.rafting-hoa.co.jp/en/activities/rafting/

Address: 132 Chisaka, Hidaka-cho, Saru-gun, Hokkaido (Google Map)

12. Paragliding

Why not try paragliding in Furano, the so-called navel of Hokkaido? Flying over the vast land of Hokkaido by tandem paragliding is a safe and fantastic experience.

HP: activityjapan.com/publish/plan/442 (Japanese Only)

Address: 140-1 Nishigakudenniku, Furano-shi, Hokkaido (Google Map)

13. Curling

Hokkaido Bank Curling Stadium in Sapporo City is an all-year-round curling facility.  You can simply turn up and borrow all the necessary equipment for this popular winter Olympic sports.

HP: www.welcome.city.sapporo.jp/find/sports/hokkaido_bank_curling_stadium/?lang=en

Address: 9-1-1 Tsukisamu Higashi 1-Jyo, Toyohira-ku, Sapporo-shi, Hokkaido (Google Map)

14. Lake Diving

You can lake dive at Lake Shikotsu which is reputed to have the clearest lake water in the entire nation. The lake would never get ice frozen so you can dive in all year round. Even novice divers would be captivated by the crystal blue underwater world.

HP: www.ocean-days.com/wp/shikotuko-fan/ (Japanese Only)

Address: 92 Shikotsukoonsen, Chitose-shi, Hokkaido (Google Map)

15. Trekking


There are many mountains in Hokkaido. Hakkenzan in Sapporo has a sharp, rocky peak with many attractive features for mountain trekking lovers. It is not far from the city center yet full of wild nature.

HP: www.kokudo-giken.co.jp/hiking/hakkenzan.html (Japanese Only)

Address: Toyama, Minami-ku, Sapporo, Hokkaido (Google Map)

16. Farm Hiking

Nemuro City is located in the eastern part of Hokkaido with good footpaths. There are beautiful dairy farms and you can enjoy various dairy products with soft serve ice cream and a local soul food called Escalope to name a few.  Hiking the area is highly recommended.

HP: www.nemuro-foottourism.com/

HP: www.nemuro-footpath.com/ (Japanese Only)

Address: 2-10 Kowa-cho90, Nemuro-shi, Hokkaido (Google Map)

17. Bridge Swinging

Tie yourself to a rope from the bridge and jump to the river- that's what bridge swinging is all about. There will be a moment of free fall followed by a large swinging motion like Tarzan. Try this at either Niseko or Hidaka for an adrenaline rush.

HP: www.rafting-hoa.co.jp/en/activities/bridge-swing/

Address: 132 Chisaka, Hidaka-cho, Saru-gun, Hokkaido (Google Map)

18. Four-wheeled Motorcycle


Enjoy a ride on a four-wheeled buggy motorbike at Bankei in Sapporo. You can ride a buggy motorbike through the mountain forests only in Hokkaido. Beginners can safely drive under the instruction of a guide. Why not try this when you are in Sapporo?   

HP: www.snowmobilelandsapporo.com (Japanese Only)

Address: 478 Fukui, Nishi-ku, Sapporo-shi, Hokkaido (Google Map)

19. Treeing

Treeing is a recreational activity of tree climbing. By climbing up a tree you will enjoy viewing a vast forest and feel the greatness of  nature. This treeing experience is available at Tomamu Resort.

HP: www.windsor-hotels.co.jp/ja/activity/treeing/ (Japanese Only)

Address: Shimizu, Toyako, Abuta-gun, Hokkaido (Google Map)

20. Hunting Edible Wild Plants

Kutchan Town is located in the southwest of Hokkaido. Here you can find edible wild plants all year round with wild garlic, mountain udo, and aralia sprout during spring to early summer and various mushrooms in autumn. This is a good spot to know and visit in Hokkaido at any time of year.

HP: h-takarajima.com/detail/index/3655 (Japanese Only)

Address: 145-2 Hirafu, Kutchan, Abuta-gun, Hokkaido (Google Map)

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The information in this article is accurate at the time of publication.

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