4 Amazing Places that Will Make You Want to Visit Hakodate!

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  • When I visited Hakodate (函館) in winter, there were a few places that I wanted to visit while I was there. As one of the bigger cities in Hokkaido, Hakodate has a lot to offer, from magnificent views to fresh seafood due to its location near the sea.

    1. Morning market near JR Hakodate station

    hakodate morning market

    Author’s photo

    The first place I would like to introduce is the morning market where you can get yummy fresh seafood, located less than 10 minutes on foot from the JR Hakodate station. I would recommend going to the market as early as possible in the morning before the fresh seafood disappears. Here, you can find all sorts of seafood like gigantic crabs, various types of fish, scallops and sea urchins. You can find the freshest sea urchins in the summer season (around June-August). The price is also pretty reasonable too, much cheaper compared to what I paid for similar seafood in Tokyo and Osaka. There is also an area where you can catch your own squid in the market and enjoy your catch after that, as seen below.

    hakodate squid

    Author’s photo
    2. Fort Goryokaku (五稜郭)


    What makes this fort interesting is its star shape. It is best to go up the observatory area of Goryokaku Tower to be able to see the star shaped fort clearly. Nowadays, this fort serves as a park. Although it is famous as a cherry blossom viewing location, I personally prefer it when the area is covered with snow. You can take the tram from Hakodate station and stop at Goryokaku Koen Mae (五稜郭公園前). From there, it is just another 10 minutes walk to the fort.

    hakodate goryokaku winter

    Author’s photo


    3. Mount Hakodate (函館山)

    hakodate mt hakodate

    Author’s photo

    Mount Hakodate is definitely my recommended place to watch the night view of Hakodate. Unfortunately, depending on the weather, you will either observe a clear view of the city or nearly nothing at all. It’s not difficult to access, you just need to take a tram from Hakodate station to the Juijigai tram stop. From there, take a short walk to the ropeway station where you take the ropeway to reach the summit.


    4. Onuma Park (大沼国定公園)


    Onuma Park is a natural park and definitely a great place for anyone who loves nature. And in winter, the view is really beautiful. Though walking can be difficult due to the amount of snow. It is better to prepare some extra time in case the train gets delayed. Located less than one hour journey from Hakodate station, why not check out Onuma Park if you have some time to spare?

    hakodate onuma park winter

    Author’s photo


    So what are you waiting for? You just have to come to Hakodate to enjoy these places yourself.

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