If you are a backpacker and you want to make the most out of your limited time in Sapporo, then this article is for you. Here’s how you can maximize a two-day trip in Hokkaido’s capital city without spending more than 20,000 yen, including lodging.
1. Hokkaido University
Not far from Sapporo Station, walk your way to Hokkaido University where you can enjoy different architectures from different periods. Along with that, you can also enjoy the natural scenery because the university houses different species of flora, fauna, and trees. Take a stroll around the university and relax for an hour or so. And since there are lots of trees, you do not need to worry about the sun. The entire area is naturally shaded and Sapporo has a cool breeze, so I don’t think you will even break a sweat walking around while appreciating the nature.
2. Former Hokkaido Government Office Building
Approximately five minutes from the university on foot, you will see the former Hokkaido Government Office. Because it is a very popular tourist attraction, more often than not, there are different food fairs or special events happening near its main entrance, which is a good opportunity to enjoy local delicacies and desserts.
3. Sapporo TV Tower
After indulging yourself in food, simply follow the street signs and you will reach the Sapporo TV Tower. It takes approximately 15 to 20 minutes on foot to go to this place. On your way here, you will pass by Odori Park and the Sapporo Clock Tower. I highly recommend going to this tower on foot if you don’t want to miss the beauty of the park as well as the street art.
They also offer a bungee jumping activity, so if you have the guts to jump off this TV tower, you may try it for around 2,000 yen.
4. Sapporo Beer Museum
A 15 to 20-minute walk from the TV tower is the Sapporo Beer Museum. Here, you can see the history of how the famous Sapporo beer developed through time. Also, for 800 yen, you can get a three-beer tasting set which surely is satisfying after walking for a while.
From here, ride a bus back to Sapporo Station which will approximately take 20 minutes.
5. Okurayama Jump Stadium
Upon returning to Sapporo Station, ride the train going to Maruyama Station and go to the Okurayama Jump Stadium, a ski jumping venue that offers a wonderful overlooking view of Sapporo City.
If you want to conserve your energy, you can simply ride the lift back and forth for 500 yen. On the other hand, you may also climb up or walk down the ski jump. It takes approximately 20 minutes to do so. I did the latter for I simply enjoy being close to nature.
Additionally, try not to miss the melon vanilla ice cream that is for sale on top of the ski jump. It tastes very milky and is really good!
Most people also pair their visit to the ski jump with Sapporo Maruyama Zoo. Though I skipped that part, it seems very interesting to visit it for it houses unique animals.
6. Shiroi Koibito Park
After visiting the ski jump (and the zoo), head to Miyanosawa Station. From there, it is just a short walk going to Shiroi Koibito Park where the famous sweets originating in Hokkaido are made. The place is really amazing and you can even join a baking lesson for roughly 1,500 yen.
On top of that, the entire place looks as if it’s from the Baroque period with the architectural design of its buildings and the decorations around the factory. It is indeed a must-visit and a really good place to stay and watch the sunset.
In the evening, you can explore Susukino and enjoy the nightlife. Here, you may also try Genghis Khan, a popular local dish in Hokkaido.
During my entire trip, this was the most expensive thing I paid for. I paid about 5,000 yen for this grilled mutton, but I don’t regret it for it was very delicious. The downside, though, was that I had to wait two hours just to be able to eat this Hokkaido cuisine.
After eating, you can stay at an affordable capsule hotel or hostel. I stayed in a capsule hotel not far away for only 2,000 yen. The prices of accommodation, of course, vary depending on the day and whether it is the peak or offseason.
1. Nakajima Park
The following day, head to Nakajima Park and enjoy the natural scenery.
Within the park is the Hokkaido Museum of Literature which you can also visit. The museum has pretty fascinating exhibits for both local and foreign writers.
2. Sapporo Art Park
After that, head to Sapporo Art Park where you can enjoy indoor and outdoor exhibitions. If you are into art, you will surely enjoy this place for it teaches you the traditional and modern culture of Hokkaido through different mediums of art. They also have interactive art pieces that you will surely enjoy. However, since the art park is quite big, you will need a lot of stamina and time to explore the entire area.
There are other interesting places to visit in Sapporo such as the hot springs located in the south and a safari. However, these places require more time, so if you will be traveling just for two days, you might want to save these for another trip.
Overall, Sapporo is a very tourist-friendly city. All the maps and guides are written in a way that even inexperienced travelers will have no trouble. Manage your time properly, and you will be able to see a lot of what Sapporo has to offer in a span of two days with no problem!