{Japan: Plan} Our Itinerary For a 3-Day Trip to Sapporo, Japan

sapporo-beer-garden

Sapporo Beer Garden, Sapporo, Japan

As of tomorrow it will be 2 weeks until our trip to Hong Kong/Japan.  The reality that we will be halfway around the world for a month is starting to sink in —- along with the realization that I have about a gazillion things left to do before we go!  But at least the itinerary is pretty much done, although I do keep tinkering with it here and there.  Here’s what we have planned for the Sapporo portion of our trip:

October 5, 2013 (Odori Park, Sapporo Beer Garden, Susukino)

  • Arrive at Sapporo’s New Chitose Airport @ 1:05 PM.  From the airport it should take an hour or so to reach our hotel, Renaissance Sapporo (Marriott).
  • Odori Park.  This is where the famous Sapporo Snow Festival is held every year.  I’m hoping that the stalls that sell the famous Sapporo grilled corn will still be there when we visit.
  • Dinner at Sapporo Beer Garden.  Here’s where we plan to drink copious amounts of Sapporo beer and indulge in the popular Sapporo specialty, Genghis Khan (BBQ mutton).  Well, I might be exaggerating a bit when I say copious.  I get lightheaded after half a bottle.  And M suffers from the worse case of Asian alcohol dehydrogenase I’ve ever seen.  He turns redder than a beet!
  • Susukino.  I’m looking forward to walking through this district and taking in all the sights and sounds of Sapporo nightlife.  This area is teeming with stores, bars, pachinko parlors, and various red light districts.

October 6, 2013 (Historical Village of Hokkaido, Moerenuma Park)

  • Breakfast at Nijo Market.  Since Sapporo is so famous for their seafood, we want to eat as much of it as we can —- and that includes for breakfast!  Nijo Market sells all kinds of fresh seafood donburi.
  • Historical Village of Hokkaido.  This is an outdoor museum that recreates a Hokkaido village of yesteryear.  It’ll be interesting to see how the peoples of this area were living 100 years ago.
  • Lunch at Kani Honke.  You can’t go to Sapporo and not have crab.  Kani Honke serves up kaiseki feasts that feature dish after dish of crab cooked in a variety of different ways.  I’m already salivating just thinking about it!
  • Moerenuma Park.  This beautiful park was designed by the famous Japanese American artist Isamu Noguchi.  I’m thinking we might rent bicycles to explore the park.  I haven’t ridden a bike since junior high school so we’ll see if that saying about never forgetting how to ride one is true!
  • Dinner at Menya Saimi.  This is supposed to be THE place to get miso ramen in Sapporo.  Hopefully the wait won’t be too outrageous.

October 7, 2013 (Okurayama Ski Jump, Otaru)

  • Okurayama Ski Jump This is where the ski jump competitions were held in the 1972 Winter Olympics.  I’m afraid of heights so I hope this won’t be too much for me.  We’ll also visit the Sapporo Winter Sports Museum at the foot of the hill.
  • Lunch at a soup curry restaurant or Ramen Kyowakoku.  I want to do the soup curry.  M really wants to go to Ramen Kyowakoku which is a ramen theme park featuring 8 of Sapporo’s most famous shops.  Maybe we’ll have to flip a coin or something.  Or maybe we won’t feel like either and just go to KFC and get deep-fried corn soup.
  • Otaru.  This is a beautiful little city about a half hour away from Sapporo.  There is a lovely canal there as well as a shopping district composed of Western style buildings.
  • Dinner at a sushi restaurant in Otaru.  Otaru is supposed to have some of the best sushi in all of Japan.  We’ll see how it stacks up to the sushi we ate at Tsukiji last year!

Photo credit: arcreyes [-ratamahatta-] / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA