The region surrounding Niseko in the summertime begs to be explored. Gentle valleys and hills, pristine creeks and springs, numerous onsen, verdant farmland, mountains on all sides, the list goes on. The beautiful Lake Toya is a must-see for anyone wanting to hike in and around an active volcano, and provides a great lake town atmosphere. The nearby Makkari region is an excellent afternoon trip, with famous bakeries and tofu shops hidden away amongst its wilderness.
Day tour options change throughout the season. Arrange a tour for late April’s Golden Week, widely considered the official start to summer festivities, and witness Sapporo’s vibrant cherry blossoms (sakura). For those that prefer fall foliage, a trip to Noboribetsu in early October is a must, where the autumn colours always impress. This area is also home to some of Hokkaido’s most surreal scenery - Hell Valley. True to its name, this area is also quite volcanically active, and therefore has some of Hokkaido’s finest onsen (Japanese natural hot springs).
For those looking to catch a glimpse of Japanese urban life, head to Sapporo. Fireworks, antique shopping and Bon-Odori dances are on display at the Summer Festival, which runs from the end of July until the end of August. This festival boasts Japan’s most famous beer garden - where local and international beer is served in a beer garden stretching 1 km long! If visiting earlier or later in the summer, know that Sapporo’s parks, dining, shopping, and big-city lights can be enjoyed anytime of the year.
Niseko's location is special, and being in rural Japan the most convenient way to get around is by car. Renting a car is affordable in Japan, and more than worth it to make sure you can see the beauty surrounding Niseko during your holiday. Visit our rental car page for more detailed information.
If you have a car at your disposal, road trips can be the best way to truely appreciate the natural beauty of Hokkaido and the areas surrounding Niseko. Take a look at our road trip articles to plan one of your own!
Do you have something special in mind? Let us know, and we’ll use our local knowledge yto tailor a trip to suit your exact needs!