Quick Travel Guide to Sobetsu

The Top 5 Things to Do in Sobetsu!

Is it your first trip to Sobetsu?
Then you should definitely not miss the following
5 recommendations on sightseeing spots, activities, eat&drink and more!

  • Experience Earth!
  • Landscape Gazing!
  • Local Produce!
  • Fruit Picking!
  • Sobetsu’s Events!

Experience Earth!

Full Sightseeing Course including Mount Showa-Shinzan, Mount Usu and Lake Toya!

Toya Caldera and Usu Volcano Unesco Global Geopark

The Toya Caldera and Usu Volcano Unesco Global Geopark is a natural landscape in which to enjoy nature, learn about earth’s history, and experience first-hand the earth’s natural force. It has been the first registered geopark in Japan, and its vast natural heritage such as Toya Caldera, Mount Showa-Shinzan, Volcano Usu and the many geological sites being proof of ancient as well as recent eruptions, are the main attractions that make this geopark a special place to investigate further the environment’s historical heritage.

Usu Volcano Unesco Global Geopark

The park can be understood as a museum where you can learn about our “ever-changing earth”: a variety of walking paths, and other attractions such as a hands-on learning with guided tours are also offered.

Landscape Gazing!

Scenic Spot for a complete view over Lake Toya and Mount Yotei

Sobetsu Park offers a fantastic experience!

Sobetsu Park is located at the south rim of the Toya Caldera and offers a fantastic view over a massive area of the 86,000 m² large national park. From the observation deck at the top of Mount Fudo, you will have a splendid view over Lake Toya, and the infamous Mount Yotei majestically peaks in the far distance in the North.

Sobetsu Park

Your sight will wander South, where Mount Usu and Mount Showa-Shinzan are brotherly united through a single line on the horizon. In addition, this spot is also known for its overwhelming beauty in spring: in mid-May you can enjoy about 300 plum trees in full bloom, coloring the observation deck’s surrounding in a carpet of pink.

Local Produce!

Fresh Vegetables, Fresh Fruit, Local Produce at

Sobetsu’s Road Station
Michi no Eki – “Sobetsu Johokan i”

Taste the fresh local produce of Sobetsu! Seasonal vegetables as well as a variety of fresh fruit such as strawberries, cherries, grapes, apples and more are available here in their respective harvest season!
Specialties are Sobetsu’s brand rice and apples, sweets made of pumpkin, and the non-additive processed fruit products such as fruit jam and preserves.

Michi no Eki - Sobetsu Information Center “i”

You can also find the Tourist Information Counter (ask for sightseeing attraction coupons giving a better deal!) in the 1F, and the Disaster Prevention Center with various exhibitions on the volcano eruptions, in the 2F of the building.

Fruit Picking!

Experience the joy of harvesting through “fruit picking” in

Sobetsu Fruit Village!

Sobetsu Fruit Village is an association operated by 18 fruit farms, offering a variety of seasonal fruit picking activities for tourists. You can harvest with your own hands, and taste the freshly picked fruits on the spot! See the following chart for approximate seasons of harvesting local fruits:

  • Spring (from mid/late May): strawberries
  • Early Summer (early July thru late July) cherries
  • Late Summer (between July-September): plums
  • Autumn (from early September): grapes, apples, prunes
  • Late Autumn (until early November): apples
Sobetsu Fruit Village

Sobetsu’s Events!

Celebrate Unique Events of Sobetsu!

The Yukigassen (Snowball Fight) Championships,
the Sobetsu Apple Festival and many more!

Sports Yukigassen (Snowball Fight) is a new winter sports created by the townspeople of Sobetsu around several decades ago. Its annual international championships are hosted at the foot of Mount Showa-Shinzan in February each year. Yukigassen is enjoyed throughout the world, and around 150 national and international teams are participating in the championships. Watch and enjoy the heated battles of the annual fight for worlds-best Snowball Team!

delicious fruit throughout Hokkaido, the cradle of Sports Yukigassen (Snowball Fight)

Check for the annual schedule at the Showa-Shinzan International Sports Yukigassen Official Website: http://www.yukigassen.jp

Another big festival of Sobetsu is the annual “Sobetsu Apple Festival” which is held in October every year. Not only can you find fresh vegetable and fruit produce here, but at some stands you can also try out the all-you-can-fill bags!
Here you can also purchase fresh meat of the local brand of luxury Japanese Black Cattle (called Okutoya-Gyu, for a bargain price!), to then grill it immediately on a charcoal grill that you can borrow for free!

Check for the annual schedule of the “Sobetsu Apple Festival” at: https://facebook.com/sobetsukanko