HOKKAIDO The best winter playground

Winter in Hokkaido

Hokkaido: one of the most famous snow resorts in the world.

This northern island, which never ceases to attract powder snow lovers from around the world, is getting some of the best snow this year.

When safe international travel makes a comeback, we look forward to seeing you all again in this white winter world, so you can come and paint tracks on the snow with your gear, heart and soul.

Spark your love and passion for Hokkaido with these videos.

1.Kiroro
(Nearest Airport: New Chitose Airport)

Sapporo is the gateway to Hokkaido, a short 45-minute train ride from New Chitose Airport.

Ski resorts are less than 30 min by car from the city center, while an hour's drive will take you to the big mountain Yoichi, where you can expect powder snow.

Sapporo Kokusai Ski Resort and Kiroro Resort are both located on Mt. Yoichi, both of which have a wide variety of courses for all levels; from advanced skiers to families of all ages.

Kiroro also has a mountain club for backcountry skiing and provides excellent support if it's your first time into these vast backcountry areas.

There are plenty more ski resorts accessible by car in under an hour from central Sapporo City, where night skiing is also popular. Sapporo city boasts Hokkaido's largest entertainment district, a perfect place for winter sports lovers to play on the slopes and in the city, all day and night.

2.Niseko
(Nearest Airport: New Chitose Airport)

Needless to say, Niseko is the most world-renowned powder snow area of Hokkaido, infamous and recognized as an outstanding location for winter sports.

With easy access to Niseko by bus from the New Chitose Airport, many long-stay visitors from overseas come to ride the fresh powder snow that covers the mountains daily in winter.

The Niseko nightlife is another reason to travel from abroad to visit. Top chefs cook world-class international dinners. Fun parties are at lodges and restaurants; there's even live music! The friendships made and fun to be had draws plenty of international crowds.

The massive scale of the ski resorts on Annupuri, Moiwa, and Higashiyama are fun to explore. You can join one of the many guided backcountry tours for the adventure.

The snow resorts in Niseko are for anyone of any level; everyone can enjoy this beautiful life with white powder snow.

3.Asahikawa
(Nearest Airport: Asahikawa Airport)

The Asahikawa and Furano areas are located in the center of Hokkaido island.

There's Mt. Asahidake and Mt. Kurodake on the Daisetsuzan volcanic group of mountains, as well as Mt. Tokachi, Mt. Furano, and Sandan-Yama mountain along the Tokachi mountain range. Each mountain has some of the deepest and best powder snow trails in Hokkaido.

This is the area in Hokkaido that attracts the most powder lovers in the world, with face-deep powder snow that resets daily.

You can ski and enjoy the great night view of the city at Santa Present Park, with easy access from Asahikawa city. The ski resort Kamui Ski Link offers a variety of course designs to ride, unique in Japan. Mt. Asahidake and Mt. Kurodake have ropeways to take you up high to different backcountry areas. This central Hokkaido area is popular because you can choose how you want to ski depending on the weather, time of day, conditions, and your own individual style.

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    Hokkaido Snowsports
    Ambassador

    Top riders from all over the world share their memories of Hokkaido as official Ambassadors of Hokkaido.

    Check out the latest shots from the Ambassadors as well as everyone who loves winter in Hokkaido through these posts, and let your passion for Hokkaido burn bright again.

    • Akira
      Sasaki
      Pro Skier

      Alpine and all-mountain skier born in 1981, from Hokuto City, Hokkaido, Japan. He represented Japan at the age of 16 and competed in the Salt Lake City Olympics while still being a university student. Since then, he competed in three more Olympic Games including Torino, Vancouver, and Sochi consecutively. At the World Cup, he stood on the podium three times (the highest and most awarded Asian competitor to date). His unique skiing technique and risk-taking style have made him a top star in the world of skiing, with fan clubs in Europe, the home of skiing. After the Sochi Olympics in 2014, he turned to the world of mountain skiing. He released a documentary film "TWINPEAKS" in November 2020.

      Major Achievements:
      2003 - Wengen World Cup, 2nd place (highest Japanese ranking)
      2006 - Schladming World Cup, 2nd place
      2006 - Shiga Kogen World Cup, 2nd place
      Olympic Games: Competed 4 times consecutively
      World Championships: 7 times
      World Cup Top 10 Ranking: 21 times

      akiraexploring

    • Taisuke
      Kusunoki
      Freeskier

      Lives in Sapporo. Started moguls at a young age and won the 2005 All Japan Championships Dual Moguls. In that same year, he was the runner-up at the Canada Cup Big Air. His current focus is skiing big mountains anywhere from his home in Hokkaido to Alaska. He’s one of Japan’s most stylish skiers, with top class skills and a unique skiing style ahead of its time. He’s passionate, focused, and has a genuine love of skiing that inspires fans. In 2017, he won a stunning victory at the Freeride World Qualifier, the first Freeride World Championship held in Japan. He became the first Asian to participate in the Freeride World Tour, and showed off his freestyle, making himself known to the world. In Novemer 2020, he released a video with a focus of skiing in Hokkaido, Japan.

      2013 - World Heli Challenge (New Zealand) 2nd place
      2017 - Freeride World Qualifier (Hakuba, Japan), Champion
      First Asian to participate in the Freeride World Tour
      2018 - Freeride World Tour, Competed as a Hakuba Wild Card

      https://www.taisukekusunoki.com/
      taisuke0822

    • Takaharu
      Nakai
      Snowboarder

      Born in Kutchan, Hokkaido, he became a JSBA professional at the age of 15, joined the All Japan National Team at 16, and competed in the Salt Lake Olympics at 17, where he placed 5th. Since then, he has competed in numerous contests, including X-GAME, World Cup, TOYOTA BIG AIR, X-TRIAL JAM, and the Torino Olympics. After the Olympics in Torino, he gradually distanced himself from competitions and started to focus on backcountry snowboarding, which had always been his main interest. He travels year round in search of powder in the mountains of Hokkaido, Rishiri Island, Oregon and Alaska in the US, BC in Canada, Switzerland, France and Italy in Europe, and even New Zealand and Chile. He’s a professional snowboarder, though prefers to share his snowboarding experience and skills through photos and videos in the vast snowy mountains of the world instead of competitions.

      takaharunakai

    • Mathis
      Dumas
      Photographer - Guide - Filmmaker

      A photographer, filmmaker, IFMGA Mountain Guide, mountain sports athlete and influencer based out of Chamonix, in the French Alps. He is known for his ability to capture extraordinary imagery while climbing, skiing and paragliding in extremely high-risk environments.
      As a photographer, he has done many projects with well-known company such as National Geographic and Red Bull.

      https://www.mathisdumas.com/
      mathis_dumas

    • Marion
      Hearty
      Snowboarder

      French snowboarder. After competing in halfpipe and slopestyle at the World Cup, she started competing at Freeride World Tour and won first place overall in 2017, 2019, and 2020. She has a lot of experience in shooting such as The North Face projects in various places including Hokkaido and Hakuba in Japan. She mainly speaks English on social media, and has fans all over the world, especially in Europe.

      https://www.marionhaerty.com/
      marion_haerty

    • Gigi
      Ruf
      Snowboarder

      Austrian snowboarder. He focuses on making videos lately and his creative style has made him one of the most popular snowboarders in the world. He loves Japan and has been to Japan many times, appearing in videos made by Japanese snowboarders, shooting and competing freeride competitions.

      gigiruf

    Today's Hokkaido

    It's been cold and snowy in Hokkaido again this year, with the best snowfall in the world.