Abashiri in Hokkaido, drift ice town, Okhotsk Sea crab, town of hot springs and flowers, filming location of 'If You Are the One'

Abashiri in Hokkaido is the entrance to the Shiretoko World Natural Heritage site. It's a popular town for the drift ice sightseeing icebreaker ship in the winter Okhotsk Sea. This area holds the beauty of the four seasons, the delectable food as well as plentiful hot springs and more activities.

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Abashiri Tourist Information


Association of Abashiri-shi Sightseeing
5-1, Minami 3 jo Higashi 4 chome, Abashiri-shi, Hokkaido
Tel: +81-152-44-5850
Open: 9:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m.
Regular Close Day: December 31- January 5



Abashiri Sightseeing Recommendations
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Okhotsk Drift Ice Museum
Okhotsk Drift Ice Museum Grand Opening

Renewal Opening on August 1st 2015!
The drift ice experiences will be reborn with these new facilities that include projection mapping, touching real drift ice, a drift ice experience terrace replicating day break and low latitude region aurora, a drift ice fantasy theatre that utilizes 5 large screens giving a full panoramic view and a variety of other techniques for experiencing drift ice that can only be found here!
Adults: 750 yen, children and groups discounted.

Abashiri Prison Museum
Abashiri Prison Museum

This open air museum is the reassembled building actually used in the Meiji era preserved and opened for the public. In addition the lives of the prisoners are replicated for the important role they played in the opening up of Hokkaido to Japan.
Visiting Time Approximately 90 Minutes
Open throughout the year, adults: 1,080yen, children and groups discounted.
Chinese signs and pamphlets are also available.

Northern Tribal Museum
Northern Tribal Museum

The museum introduces you to the culture and way of life of the northern minor tribes. We have a complete corner for the Okhotsk culture that can only be found here in this region of Japan, You can gain knowledge about the wisdom of the peoples that live in the severely cold lands.
Closed Mondays, adults 550 yen, children discounted.

Flower Garden - Hana Tento
Flower Garden - Hana Tento

Hana Tento is a flower garden with an area of 3.5 ha sloped filled with roughly 80,000 blooming flowers. The best time to see it is between early July and mid October where a variety of colors can be enjoyed, In a flower garden made beautiful by flowers such as the scarlet sage etc.

From the Drift Ice Sightseeing Icebreaker Ship 'Aurora'
From the Drift Ice Sightseeing Icebreaker Ship 'Aurora'

The 400 passenger capacity ship sails for approximately 1 hour through the drift ice sea. Drift ice can be seen up close, and the experience of breaking through the ice can only be felt here!
Adults: 3,300yen, children and groups discounted. 5 Ships in service per day.
→ click here for details

Hot Air Balloon Free Flight Adventure
Hot Air Balloon Free Flight Adventure

Take a great flight over the drift ice and the World Natural Heritage Site! This is a great photo opportunity as it gives you a 360 degree view from between 500 and 1000 meters up in the air. Allow yourself to be taken where the wind takes you. Well, you can relax and enjoy as the skilled pilot takes you on a safe flight. It's an incredible free flight overlooking drift ice that in all the world can only be seen here!
February 6 - March 6, 2016 (scheduled)
Adults: 20,000yen

'If You Are the One' : Kitahama Station
'If You Are the One' : Kitahama Station

The filming location in Hokkaido of the film 'If you are the one' (FEI CHENG WU RAO), Kitahama station was used as the first Hokkaido set piece. It starts with the two main characters disembarking the diesel train. Many messages and cards can be seen on the walls inside the station.

Moyoro Shell Mound Museum
Moyoro Shell Mound Museum

Introducing the Moyoro people who lived at the northern seas through an exhibition including themes such as housing, graves and shell mounds.
At this joint establishment grave exhibition you will be able to examine excavated gravesites up close.
At this historic site you can view restored Okhotsk culture housing, graves, and post-Jomon period housing.
Adults: 300yen, children and groups discounted.

Association of Abashiri-shi Sightseeing

Welcome

 Association of Abashiri-shi Sightseeing gives sightseeing information for Abashiri and its surrounding areas. The information office is at the Abashiri River river mouth road side station "Ryuhyoukaido Abashiri" (Drift ice highway Abashiri), with seagulls fluttering and, fishing boats sailing around in full view of the Okhotsk Sea and Shiretoko Peninsula. In winter this is the departure point for the Drift Ice Sightseeing Icebreaker Ship "Aurora", and in summer it becomes the departure point of the Whale Watching Cruise Ship.


Road Side Station 'Drift ice highway Abashiri'

 Local Special Products Sales Corner and Take Away Corner You can relax and gaze out to sea while enjoying a meal at the 'Kinemakan' (Cinema) food court.
 At this Information Station you can get all the info you need about Abashiri the town of sightseeing.
 Fully equipped with clean warm water 24 hour toilets.
 There are also Chinese speaking staff at the tourist information center. You are also able to make contact us in Chinese via E-mail for inquiries.



[Climate of Abashiri]

Abashiri Jan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec. Year
Average temperature
(℃)
-5.5 -6.0 -1.9 4.4 9.4 13.1 17.1 19.6 16.3 10.6 3.7 -2.4 6.5
Precipitation
(mm)
58.1 34.0 48.9 54.7 65.3 58.7 77.9 98.4 109.4 76.0 66.8 53.8 802.0

Recommended Points

From spring till autumn flowers bloom in a variety of colors.

Seeing drift ice in Asia can only be done here in the Okhotsk Abashiri!
Abashiri may be strongly associated with the cold, however from spring to autumn many colorful flowers bloom, a lot of seafood is harvested from the Okhotsk and 5 lakes, as well as great amounts of produce from the mountains.

You can enjoy seasonal activities like cycling, fishing, horse riding, canoeing, skiing and so on.
Play hard, and then physically recover at a hot spring resort hotel around Lake Abashiri.

One more thing, Abashiri tap water is famous for being beautifully tasting even by Hokkaido's high standards! Regardless of the facility, you can be sure that the tap water provided is great tasting, safe and free.



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There are 3 museums that are unique to this area.

These are the Okhotsk Drift Ice Museum, the Abashiri Prison Museum and the Hokkaido Northern Tribal Museum.In addition there is also the Abashiri-shi folk museum, the Moyoro Shell Mound Museum, the Tofutsu Lake Waterfowl - Swampland Center and more that you can visit.

How to Best Enjoy the 4 Seasons

Take a cruiser and see real whales and dolphins, or you can go horse trekking (outdoor horseback riding). Also canoeing in Lake Abashiri, cycling and running courses are also avilable.

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Popular Food

Abashiri is a treasure house of food with top brand Tsuri Kinki, and more as well as seafood caught in Lake Abashiri such as Yamato corbicula, whitebait, and Japanese pond smelt, also blue king crab which in Japan can only be caught in Abashiri, our greatest asset the Oysters of the Lake Mokoto, and also the brand name beef 'Okhotsk Abashiri Wagyu'! It's worth to visit all the way over to try our produce aiming for the best seasonal periods! Also we would love you to try the local gourmet such as 'Abashiri Zangi Don' (deep-fried salmon on a bowl of rice) and 'Abashiri Chanpon' (noodle dish)!

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Events of Abashiri

The crabs caught after drift ice is gone are delicious! Spring Crab Battle in Abashiri Late May: The crabs caught after drift ice is gone are delicious! Spring Crab Battle in Abashiri
[May 24(Sun), 2015]
This is a very popular event where you can taste the amazing flavor of crabs caught after the drift ice is gone.
The main event of the day is the crab dish competition by restaurants in the city. The restaurants compete against each other with their original crab dishes. There are many other fun events such as a spot sales of crabs, gourmet stalls and more.
Impressive Abashiri Morning Market Late July to mid September: Impressive Abashiri Morning Market
[From July 19 (Sun) to September 23 (Wed/Public holiday),2015]
There are food stands which offer tasty breakfast made from the local specialties. Fresh seafood and vegetables are sold as well.

・July 19 (Sun) to July 26 [5 days] Open on Fri, Sat, Sun and Public Holiday
・July 31 (Fri) to August 16 (Sun) [17 days] Open everyday
・August 21 (Fri) to September 23 (Public holiday) [18 days] every Fri., Saturday, Sunday and public holidays
[Open] 6:30 a.m.-10:00a.m.
[Place] At a special site in Abashiri Gyoko (Abashiri fishing port), in 4 Bancho, Abashiri Minatomachi
Abashiri Okhotsk Summer Festival Late July: Abashiri Okhotsk Summer Festival
[From July 23 (Thu) to 26 (Sun), 2015]
Festival where the local people gather and enjoy Abashiri's summer together. Shopping street becomes pedestrian’s paradise during the festival. Ryuhyo (iceberg) dancing in which 1,000 people dance together and the fireworks are beyond a doubt the best part. The Okhotsk sea is covered by fireworks.
Notoroko Sangoso (coral grass) Festival Mid September: Notoroko Sangoso (coral grass) Festival
[From September 12(Sat) to 13(Sun),2015]
You can enjoy delicious food and atmosphere at the beginning of autumn under the blue sky. The aroma of seafood caught in Okhotsk like scallops will spread over the festival venue.
Okhotsk Abashiri Marathon Late September: Okhotsk Abashiri Marathon
[September 27(Sun), 2015]
From the starting line at Abashiri Prison museum, there's a variety of courses including a full marathon, 5km, 3km all with the finish line at Omagari Shoreline Garden. At the finish meeting place the Abashiri Land and Sea Harvest Festival is held where great local cuisine made from the fruits of the Abashiri sea and mountains are brought together! you can enjoy the real Abashiri flavor while gazing at the sunflower field!
You must eat codfish when in Abashiri! Abashiri Cod Fish Festival Mid November: You must eat codfish when in Abashiri! Abashiri Cod Fish Festival
[November 15(Sun), 2015]
A lot of seasonal cold cod fish is served at the event!
A massive cod fish hot pot; rolled Kamaboko, a special fish cake (Abashiri is the birthplace of frozen fish paste); gourmet stalls opened by restaurants in the city. Full of cod fish!!
Abashiri Okhotsk Drift Ice Festival Mid February: Abashiri Okhotsk Drift Ice Festival
[From February 11(Thu) to 14(Sun), 2016]
You can see impressive large snow sculptures and delicately sculpted ice statues. In the evening the surroundings become even more fantastic when the ice sculptures are illuminated with 7 colors, thus taking on a different look compared to during the day.

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Map & Access

Transportation to Abashiri

  • By Airplane
    5 round trip flights a day from Tokyo Haneda Airport to Memanbetsu Airport approximately 1 hour 45 minutes, then regular bus approximately 30 minutes.
    6 round trip flights a day from Hokkaido New Chitose Airport to Memanbetsu Airport approximately 45 minutes.
  • By Train
    From Sapporo Station by JR Limited Express 'Okhotsk' to Abashiri Station (last stop), approximately 5 hours 30 minutes.
    First departure from Sapporo Station at 6:23, last departure at 17:18, 4 round trips a day.
  • By Bus
    From Sapporo Bus Terminal by Intercity Highway Bus 'Dolly mint Okhotsk-Gou' to Abashiri Bus Terminal (last stop) approximately 6 hours.
    First departure from Sapporo Bus Terminal at 8:00, last departure at 23:40 (overnight bus), 9 round trips a day.

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★ Airport shuttle bus

Memanbetsu Airport depature and arrival is connected to the domestic. → Timetable・Price list・Bus stop


★ Shiretoko Airport liner

Airport direct flights 'reservationless' (service for high season only) → Timetable and Price list (Japanese)

Memanbetsu Airport-Abashiri Station - Abashiri Bus Terminal-Abashiri Drift Ice Icebreaker Landing (Abashiri Roadside Station)-Shiratori Park Entrance-Shari Bus Terminal-Road Station Utoro・Shirietoku-Utoro Onsen Bus Terminal-Hotel tour


★ Tourist attractions go by bus

 → Bus Stop Map Here

● Moyoro Shell Mound Museum
From Abashiri Bus Terminal take the 'Omagari ・ Kouyou Iki (to Omagari and Kouyou direction)' bus at the no. 2 bus stop or take the 'Abashiri Eki・ Kouyou Iki (to Abashiri station and Kouyou direction)' bus at the no. 1 bus stop, then get off at [2]Moyoro Iriguchi (entrance).

● Abashiri Prison Museum (Ken Takakura starring movie Prison museum which became the model of Abashiri Bangaichi.)
From Abashiri Bus Terminal no. 3 stop, then ride the 'Tourist Facilities Meguri' at the Abashiri Station no. 2 bus stop and get off at [4]Abashiri Prison Museum.

● Okhotsk Drift Ice Museum
From Abashiri bus terminal no. 3 bus stop, then ride 'Tourist Facilities Meguri' at the Abashiri Station no. 2 bus stop and get off at [5] Tento-zan.

● Hokkaido prefectural Museum of Northern Peoples
From Abashiri bus terminal no. 3 bus stop, then ride 'Tourist Facilities Meguri' at the Abashiri Station no. 2 bus stop and get off at [6] Museum of Northern Peoples.

● Flower Garden Hana・Tento
From Abashiri bus terminal no. 3 bus stop, then ride 'Tourist Facilities Meguri' at the Abashiri Station no. 2 bus stop and get off at [7] Hana・Tento.

● Abashiri Municipal Provincial Museum
Ride the bus at the Abashiri Station no. 2 bus stop which is not end to Abashiri Bus Terminal, and get off at [2] Higashi 3 cho-me, then approximately 5 minutes from there on foot.


● Sango-sou
Ride the 'Saromako Sakaeura Line'Abashiri Station no. 2 bus stop, and get off at Sango-sou (entrance).

● Lake Tofutsu Shiratori Park
From Abashiri Station no. 2, ride the 'Koshimizu Line '' Shari Line' at Abashiri Bus Terminal no. 5 bus stop, and get off at Shiratori Park (entrance), then 5 minutes from there on foot.

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★ From Abashiri Station to the famous tourist attraction, to the city

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· To Sapporo (Abashiri bus Kitami bus)
· To Utoro (Abashiri bus Shari bus)
· To Bihoro (Abashiri bus)
· To Shari, to Kushiro (JR Senmosen)
· To Kitami, to Asahikawa (JR Sekihoku Main Line)
· To Lake Notoro (Abashiri bus)
· To Lake Saroma (Abashiri bus)
· To Memanbetsu Airport (Abashiri bus)



Other Abashiri information



Major tourist cities in Hokkaido




Bus lines connecting Hokkaido

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Please let us help you preparing for your individual trips,
small-group trips, observation tours, etc.

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