Saturday, March 19, 2016

3 Places to Enjoy in Otaru

Otaru is a beautiful harbor city in Hokkaido. It is about half an hour train ride from Sapporo

Otaru City is actually a major shipping port.  There are still remnants of the beautiful past that line Otaru’s streets and canal. 

Combined with snow-capped mountains, clean crisp air, time worn buildings and seasonal festivals, Otaru is a Hokkaido destination a visitor wouldn’t want to miss.

Otaru Canal 


The Otaru canal (Otaru Unga) is the main feature of Otaru.  Old warehouses line the canal and visitors will instantly shift from astonishment to romantic mood when they see the small buoys that carry candles.  Tourists get elated when they see a row of snow statues lining a path beside the canal. February is a good time to visit Otaru when the canal and the pathways around it are decorated with lights during the Otaru Snow Light Path Winter festival. The canal was started in 1923.

運河 北海道 小樽 Otaru Unga in Hokkaido 

運河 北海道 小樽 Otaru Unga in Hokkaido during Winter

The Otaru Music Box Museum  小樽オルゴール堂本店

Photo Courtesy of Nuttapon Pichetpongsa 
The Otaru Music Box Museum is located along Sakaimachi Street, together with other tourist destinations like the Museum of Venetian Art, the Glass Works house, and the Bank of Japan Building.

The Music Box Museum is one of Otaru City’s Historic Landmarks, which houses the largest collection of music boxes in the world. 

( Photo Courtesy of Payal Singh )

 Photo Courtesy of Payal Singh
Photo Courtesy of Payal Singh
Photo Courtesy of Payal Singh 

Photo Courtesy of Payal Singh 

Photo Courtesy of Payal Singh 

Custom made music boxes are also sold in the museum at the Handicraft Studio. Vancouver, Canada’s clock maker gave Otaru a steam clock which now stands in front of Sakaimachi Street’s most front-and-center.  
Photo Credits:



One of the most popular landmark in Otaru is the Tengu where a 30 foot gondola which rises to a height of 271 meters, will carry visitors to the top of the said mountain.  The panoramic view of nearby places such as Mt. Shokanbetsu, the Ishikari Bay, the Otaru Port and the Shakotan Peninsula are all breathtaking. The Mount Tengu Observation Deck is a favourite spot for the perfect overview of the whole city of Otaru at night.

Photos from See Hokkaido:

Otaru is undoubtedly a perfect place to visit because of its unique attractions especially the Otaru canal and Mount Tengu. The Music Box Museum and the other museums along Sakaimachi Street are all worth visiting for. This is one of the world’s loveliest destination and every traveler must prioritize Otaru as a Hokkaido destination on any season. 



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