Chill Out at the 2014 Sapporo Snow Festival

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February 5, 2014

Featuring over 200 ice sculptures, live music, traditional winter foods, and a big air snowboard competition, the Sapporo Snow & Ice Festival draws people from all over the world to take part in Japan’s largest snow festival.

Odori

The Snow Festival takes place at three venues across Sapporo, but the main stage is the 12-block long Odori. It’s here on each of it’s 12 blocks that you’ll find the largest and most internationally renowned ice sculptures.

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The 6th block of the Odori is home to the Hokkaido Winter Food Park. Make your way over here to warm up over a bowl of mutton barbecue, soup curry, ramen, and a number of other Hokkaido winter favorites.

Don’t feel like eating Japanese? The International Gourmet Corner in International Square on the 11th block has you covered with specialty foods from all over the world.

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If you need to work off all that delicious food, there’s ice skating, bushwalking on skis, and the Donbei Kun Ice Slide for the kids and those who feel like kids. Best of all, the whole of the Odori is illuminated every night until 10pm. You haven’t seen the snow festival until you’ve seen it at night.

Tsudome

If you’ve got kids the Tsudome area has a variety of activities in both an indoor and outdoor venue. Inside the dome kids can enjoy “Huwa Huwa Corner” and the mini-bullet train, and you can enjoy performances put on by various groups from all over Hokkaido. You can call also shop for traditional goods at the Hokkaido Furusato Market. The thrills continue outside the dome with 3 different ice slides, snow rafting, and a number of other kid and family friendly activities.

Susukino

The third and final venue of the Sapporo Snow Festival is Susukino, home to the ice sculpting contest. In this contest you are the judge, so cast your vote for your favorite design.

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Sapporo Beer Garden

When you do finally decide to call it a day, do it right by going for dinner at the Sapporo Beer Garden. It’s the perfect way to warm up before bed after a cold day outside.

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  • http://iwillteachyoualanguage.com/ Olly Richards

    I went to the festival a couple of years ago. Combined it with a snowboarding trip to Kiroro – amazing experience. I really suggest that people go and check it out, and it doesn’t cost a lot. If you’re prepared to fly in the middle of the night you can get silly deals on tickets.

    • http://www.gaijinpot.com/ Anthony Joh

      I agree. I went last year and it was awesome! The people were great, the food was amazing and skiing was fun! I can’t wait to go back.

  • Alexander Dubinski

    I just spent the last three days at the 65th Snow Festival. It really was beautiful and I enjoyed it very much. There were a lot of college students there with all kinds of questions for foreigners like myself. However, I was surprised to not see all that many other foreigners.

    • http://www.gaijinpot.com/ Anthony Joh

      I also didn’t see a lot of Western foreigners but I did see a lot of Thais when I went. With direct flights from Bangkok to Niseko a lot of Thais come to experience snow for the first time.

  • Sandhya

    Usual stuff like visiting odori and susukino snow festival is undeniably fun and would rank first in our priority list of to do things in Sapporo ….. But must see places are shiroi koibito chocolate factory, beer museum and otaru lantern festival

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