Escape to Japan: Sapporo
Summer in the Philippines is extremely hot so most of us head out to cool places. One of our favorite destinations during this time of the year, and seems to be getting more popular among Filipinos, is Japan. Our first stop is Sapporo in the island of Hokkaido where we spent four days exploring nature and our usual activities whenever we go there – drinking Sapporo beer, constantly nibbling on Royce’ chocolates and EATING!
We usually stay at Mercure Hotel but since it was already fully booked by the time we decided on our dates, we tried Daiwa Roynet Hotel, which is actually just a few steps away. This means that we’re still going to be situated at Susukino, the most happening area in the city.
For our first dinner, we had the Sapporo Ajikurabe Kani-sukiyaki courses at Kani-ya. It’s ten dishes of crabs. We got to taste all kinds of crabs and in every possible way crabs are cooked. The porridge, made from the remaining soup of where we mixed the crabs and vegetables, is still he best part so make a mental note to make space for it in your tummy.
The next day we were off to spend the whole day communing with nature at the very peaceful Chikotsu Lake and Toya Lake. Chikotsu Lake is the perfect for strolling and just doing nothing or maybe a bit of eating sweet corn or the specialty pastries offered by one of the shops there like the one Mizu no uta Patissier Lab. Meanwhile he best view of the Toya Lake is up high when you take the Usuzan Ropeway. The ride up will also give you a good look of Showa-shinzan dubbed as the miracle mountain because it just appeared out of nowhere after the 1943 eruption of Mount Usu.
Once back at the city, we had dinner at the Sapporo Beer Garden where we had the eat all you can fresh lamb Jingisukan with overflowing beer.
No one leaves Hokkaido without eating sushi so for our last dinner we had it at Family Sushi Tomoe Honten where we had a ten course meal of different Japanese specialties which, of course, includes sushi capped with a cup (or two for some) of Royce’ chocolate ice cream.
For omiyage, there’s no place else to go but to make a final stop at the Royce’ Chocolate World at the New Chitose Airport to hoard chocolates to give out to family and friends before finally boarding the plane to our next destination.