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Sapporo Yuki Matsuri

On 6. 2. it was time to go to Sapporo, this time from Haneda Airport in Tokyo to Chitose Airport in Hokkaido. The weather in Tokyo was very clear, so from the airplane we could see the top of  Fuji-san over the clouds. The flight took us 1:30h. In Hokkaido it was notably colder with about -7°C.

When we finally made it to Sapporo and left the station, we found ourselves on a bright, noisy and crowded street. No, not like Tokyo with its loads of advertisement. People here were celebrating the Sapporo Yuki Matsuri, the Snow Festival. All along the street ice sculptures had been built and music was playing.
Maybe this will help you imagine:

Sapporo Snow Festival in Susukino

Sapporo Snow Festival in Susukino

Sapporo Snow Festival sculpture

Sapporo Snow Festival sculpture

We hurried to Swanky Hotel for the check-in, which wasn’t very far. Because it was a bit late already, we only went through this street to take photos and afterwards looked for something to eat and went back to the hotel. For the next day there would be even more to see.

Breakfast was included this time. Nothing special or traditional but good enough to start the day. Then we went to Odori Park, which was originally meant to be the main street of Sapporo but somehow changed into a park. Here we found some really huge snow sculptures, and also many smaller ones – even a ramp for freestyle snowboarding.

snow palace

snow palace

freestile ramp

freestile ramp

Suddenly we were surrounded by little children running in groups through the park. They had to ask people some questions and we, as foreigners, were frequently their victims.

some kids and their victims ;)

some kids and their victims ;)

Today there was also another shrine to visit. The Hokkaido Jingu Shrine in Maruyama Park. It was again very beautiful and the snowy forest surrounding gave the area a completely different atmosphere to what we have seen before.

Hokkaido Jingu Shrine

Hokkaido Jingu Shrine

Next stop was the Sapporo Beer Museum. Without a guide, you can see the exhibition on the 3rd floor for free.
Maybe an interesting fact: In 1865, Seibei Nakagawa went to Europe and returned to Japan in 1875 after more than two years of beer brewing in Germany. In Japan he was employed by Kaitakushi as first Japanese beer brewing master.
Afterwards you can try several sorts of beer on the 1st floor, which is designed in some ways like a beer garden. There we tried the sorts Classic, Black Label (best selling sort) and Kaitakushi.

i think that needs no further explanation ;)

i think that needs no further explanation ;)

Last but not least we got ourselves some ramen in Ramen Jokucho, a street only with ramen shops. Not the cheapest of our meals but really worth a try (and the street looks very nice)!

Ramen Jokuchou

Ramen Jokuchou

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