Volcanic discoveries at Shikotsu-Toya Minami Ward, Hokkaido
Located in south-east Hokkaido, Shikotsu-Toya National Park is a living breathing museum of volcanoes.
Experience seasonal scenery and encounter local wildlife at Shikotsu-Toya National Park at the two major caldera crater lakes, Lake Shikotsu and Lake Toya, as well as volcanos Mt. Yotei, Mt. Usu, and Mt. Tarumae.
And no, you don't have to be a volcanologists to enjoy Shikotsu-Toya National Park. There is so much too see and do here that you'll be scrambling to get through it all. There are loads of activities and much to explore including a plethora of onsen (hot springs), paddling on Lake Shikotsu on a Canadian canoe, rowing across Lake Shikotsu on a clear bottom kayak, and freshwater diving in ice-free Lake Shikotsu.
Whether you are an ornithologist or just a nature lover, there's plenty of wild birds to observe as Lake Shikotsu is the home to a third of all species of wild birds. There's also the cute and adorable Hokkaido squirrel and deer to spot. Climb the rugged Mt. Tarumae with a professional guide and don’t miss the spectacular views of the national park from the summit! Other results of volcanic activity, including sulfuric eruptions and other geothermal phenomena can also be observed, earning the national park a reputation as a “museum of volcanos.”
The Lake Shikotsu Ice Festival is the cherry on top with intricate ice sculptures made with water blown by the wind from Lake Shikotsu, which freezes to create fabulous forms. The ice sculptures glitter “Lake Shikotsu Blue”during the day, and are illuminated at night with colorful lights. On weekends and holidays see fireworks displays after dark and when it's time to unwind, there is no better place than the natural hot springs of Jozankei Onsen.
- Climbing Mt. Tarumae to experience the spectacular views of the national park from the summit
- Picking seasonal fruit at Jozankei Farm
- Year-round horse-riding on the foothills of Mt. Hakken
- Soaking in the natural hot springs of Jozankei Onsen
- The festivities of the Lake Shikotsu Ice Festival
- The Lake Shikotsu Ice Festival is only held from Jan to Feb
The national park is situated in an easily accessible location, being near to central Sapporo and New Chitose Airport, and can be accessed by car or group tour buses.
There is no entry fee or permit required for Shikotsu-Toya National Park. Please check the website for individual activity prices.