Hokkaido Itinerary Travel Guide

One Day in Sapporo Itinerary | Travel Guide

Don’t you know how to spend a day in Sapporo? It would be hard to find out the perfect way to embark on a day trip to Sapporo if you have no idea where to start you trip from.

Recently, I have been asked so many times by many visitors who would be in Hokkaido about “how to spend a day in Sapporo?” I don’t think it is a daunting task to share an idea which could reveal a perfect Sapporo Itinerary for 1 day trip.

I am excited and at the same time I would be glad if you find this itinerary very useful. I do like helping people plan trips based on their interests. Hopefully you won’t be disappointed by reading this post.

Sapporo TV Tower and its Observation Deck. Photo Credit: PROJuan de Dios Santander V at Flickr.

Sapporo is not a busy city like Tokyo though it welcomes thousands of visitors each and every day who come from different parts of the world. Not all of them are backpackers; rather there are businessmen, athletes, artists, event organizers, social activists, sailors, photographers, government officials, journalists, and wildlife activists.

One of the interesting facts about Hokkaido is that most of the visitors who visit it have to come to Sapporo at least once and for few hours before flying back to home from New Chitose Airport or heading towards other areas within Hokkaido. If you’ve got one day to spend sightseeing in Sapporo, then you have come to the right place.

Here are some hotels I could highly recommend you to stay overnight.

1) UNIZO Inn Sapporo
2) Nest Hotel Sapporo Ekimae
3) Hotel Gracery Sapporo
4) Century Royal Hotel Sapporo

The Morning

Sapporo street at night. Photo Credit: andrew garton at Flickr.

Sapporo is a beautiful city with incredible sightseeing attractions. There are some cities/towns around the world, which are in fact nice to visit during only certain period of time. I won’t go far, for example, say about Hokuryu, you can spend a lovely day viewing tons of sunflowers there in the summer.

Rest of the days, I don’t feel myself energetic to get there. However, Sapporo is not like that! It is an exciting city with stunning places to travel around with a suggested flexible itinerary.

A seafood store at Nijo market in Sapporo. Photo Credit: Rebecca Kahn at Flickr.

You can start your very first trip in the early morning just by visiting Nijo Market. Would not it be a perfect place for taking your breakfast there? I say it would and my previous early morning trip to this market was only for taking my breakfast. It is an ideal place for that.

However, this is an ordinary public market filled with many seafood stores, fresh local produce and restaurants.

Here is your breakfast meal – Donburi! Photo Credit: Alpha at Flickr.

You will be delighted while having your uni ikura Donburi as your breakfast meal. It is a kind of donburi (a bowl of rice) topped with sea urchin and salmon eggs. You can add other fresh sea foods as topping if you want.

Also try having fresh sushi and sashimi. Roam around the market and discover the seafood that you have never seen before. The market is open from 7:00 to 18:00.

Sapporo Clock Tower in winter. Photo Credit: bryan… at Flickr.

What’s the next destination? Hold on, I am onto it. Why don’t you visit a little museum? For a bit history, I want you to pay a visit to the iconic Sapporo Clock Tower.

It is a National Important Cultural Property which you should admire its history. It was built in 1878, as a theatrical hall of the Sapporo Agricultural School.

Now it is no longer part of the Sapporo Agricultural School but a small museum that Sapporo boasts of owning it. The clock that bell rings every hour to announce the time was installed in 1881.

You explore the first and second floor and learn some history about the buildings and Sapporo. Admission fee is 200 yen; and opening & closing hours is from 08:45 to 17:10.

Inside Sapporo Factory. Photo Credit: Jean-Marie Hullot at Flickr.

Do you enjoy walking? It is not only good for our health but also it could save some valuable money for a short distance trip.

I usually cross the streets on foot and enjoy leisurely walk until I reach to certain place in downtown Sapporo. Sometimes I rent a bike and it makes my trip even easier when it comes to moving from one place to another.

Ok, if you dare then take a walk to Sapporo Factory from the Sapporo Clock Tower. Enjoy the stunning views of downtown Sapporo! If you don’t agree then take a taxi and reach there within a moment.

Sapporo factory is a dynamic shopping arcade where you can buy some souvenirs from the stores. There is a Seven Bank ATM booth, take this service if you run out of cash.

The Afternoon

Sapporo Beer Museum. Photo Credit: Toby Oxborrow at Flickr.

Feeling tired? Let’s go and have your lunch at the Sapporo Beer Garden. Oh before you have your meal, I request you to visit the Sapporo Beer Museum.

It is located next to it. Drink a glass of Sapporo Beer at Sapporo Beer Museum right after end of the exhibitions.

Beer sampler at the Sapporo Beer Museum. Photo Credit: Sarah Whitcher Kansa at Flickr.

I never ever have wondered how beer is made but if you are one of the beer lovers and curious of it please enjoy your time experiencing the beer making process inside the building. Finished?!

Ok, take your table and order Genghis Khan (Jingisukan – grilled mutton/lamb. It is a popular local specialty in Hokkaido. I recommend you to have this meal for lunch.

Autumn colors at Hokkaido University Botanical Garden. Photo Credit: Wikimedia commons.

I sometimes head to the Hokkaido University Botanical Garden just for self relaxation. You are heading to it now of course for the same reason as I do. Anyone who is seeking for an ideal greenery space must get to this park.

Built in 1886, with more than 4,000 kinds of plants and a little Ainu museum make the garden an attractive place to have some rest in the shade of the trees.

Check out the photos on your camera that you have taken so far, and delete the blurry photographs. Then think of your next destinations and make a to-do list for the rest of the day. From there, it is great to walk to the Odori Park.

Buy some and have some! Photo Credit: MIKI Yoshihito at Flickr

I like eating grilled Hokkaido’s corn, there is no better place to do it than Odori Park. The park is said to be the heart of the city. It is mostly visited by joggers in the early morning as part of their morning walk.

Apart from this, it gets crowded during some ongoing events like the Sapporo Yuki Matsuri (Snow Festival) in winter, the Sapporo Lilac Festival in spring, the Sapporo Autumn Fest in fall, the Sapporo Summer Festival in summer.

It is autumn now in the Odori Park! A lovely view from the Sapporo TV Tower. Photo Credit: Wikimedia commons.

There are park benches to sit on. In addition, you could spot some food vendors selling delicious street foods that you could try some! This park is an ideal place for experiencing Hokkaido’s four seasons beauty.

In summer, it becomes a flower bed. Visiting Odori park on a sunny day in summer is my favorite thing to do in the city.

Sapporo TV Tower. Photo Credit: Tzuhsun Hsu at Flickr.

You can stroll down Odori Park then walk to the Sapporo TV Tower. The seasonal views of the park can be observed from the observation deck (about 90 meters high). It is an outstanding experience that you should not miss. To appreciate the beauty of the entire city you have to rely on the observation deck.

Who does not like to eat sweets? Yeah, let’s go to Sapporo Sweets Café now and satisfy your stomach having delicious cakes, chocolates, and other confectionery.

The Evening time till Night

Sapporo Tanuki Koji Shopping Street. Photo Credit: bryan… at Flickr.

The best place to find unique Hokkaido souvenir is at Tanuki Koji Shopping Street. I prefer visiting this 1 km long shopping arcade than going to Sapporo Underground Shopping Malls – Aurora Town & Pole Town.

The shops at the Tanuki Koji Shopping Street are wonderfully decorated and there you can find so many gifts items.

Shopping here can be a little overwhelming as sometimes it is really hard to decide which one to buy because everything would seem to you very precious. I think you should give a little room for unexpected shopping adventure here.

So, walk along the shopping arcade and it would lead you to explore the area quite nicely. Good luck dear!

Mount Moiwa Ropeway. Photo Credit: moiwa.sapporo-dc.co.jp.

Your next destination would be Mount Moiwa Ropeway where you will have your dinner at the restaurant and enjoy Sapporo night views from the observation deck.

The observation deck is located at Mt. Moiwa summit, at a height of 531 meters above sea level. A panoramic night view of the city from the observation deck is absolutely stunning. It reminds me of Mount Hakodate observation platform from where the same kind of feelings can be experienced.

Mount Moiwa Observation Deck. Photo Credit: moiwa.sapporo-dc.co.jp.

If you stay overnight at this hotel, then after the mount moiwa ropeway trip you can head towards Sapporo ESTA building to spend some time on shopping. Enjoy tax free shopping there!

Your trip has not ended here yet because you will have to get back to your hotel room. Probably you would reach at the hotel around 9:30 pm, say before 10:00 pm, and then you open the door of your room and then think of the best possible way to end the day. To end the day nicely just get into the comfy-cozy bed, and pull back the duvet.

Oh before doing it take a perfect bath, pack your things properly if you are leaving Sapporo in the following morning. Once you are done with it, turn off the light and have a nice sleep. Sweet dreams to you! This is how you spend a day in Sapporo.

Thank you for reading post.


  1. Thank you for your tips! My day in Sapporo was very pleasant thanks to your guidance, appreciate it 🙂

  2. joonseok park

    this post is so helpful

  3. Great information! Thank you from St. George, Utah, USA 🙂

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