Monday, July 24, 2017

Hokkaido Lavender Tour (part 2)

Hokkaido Lavender Summer Tour from 15-21 July 2017 ... if you would like to see Lavender in Hokkaido, the full bloom period is in the week of 22 till end July, but weather is hotter (as hot as in Kuala Lumpur). During that time, the cherries would be fully ripened also.

Sapporo Odori Park Beer Gardens – this is a special event held during summer time that starts from 20 July for about three weeks. The 1 kilometer venue seats about 13,000 people, and one can savor beers brought directly from breweries in Sapporo and its suburbs, as well as beers from around the world, are on sale; one can order food too to go with the beer. Sapporo View Hotel, where we stayed for two nights, is just conveniently situated across the street.

Hokkaido’s melons – this is the season for the orange-flesh melons, touted to be the sweetest melons available. Selling at around JPY3,000 (RM120) each for an ordinary fruit, we were tempted to try; and each slice is selling around JPY500 (RM19). On the third night where we stayed in Sounkyo Choyo Resort Hotel, this fruit was served as dessert during the buffet dinner, and we were pleased to have a chance to taste it.

Next Japan trip – picturesque Kyushu 九州 in autumn (not in 2017); do let me know if you are interested to join.

Do CLICK HERE to view part 2 of photos courtesy of yours truly (KC Leong).
 Visiting Shikisai No Oka Farm ... a warm-up floral tour
 Rows of neatly arranged flowers
Good timing to see the flowers blooming
 Chris and Celine ... Furano, a town famous for flower fields, particularly Lavender
 Lavender almost in peak bloom
Farm Tomita, the best spot to view Lavender with the Takachi Mountain range as backdrop; besides the flower fields, there are cafes and shops that sell wide range of Lavender products 
 Furano Cheese Factory and participate in a DIY ice-cream session
 The fun of picking cherries and eating for 60 minutes – all you can eat
Abundance of sweet and juicy cherries 
 Visiting Ishiya Chocolate Factory that looks like a mini Disneyland ... famous for its "White Chocolate in between smooth cookies” 
 Back in Sapporo ... visiting the first office with the ancient clock still accurately run
 Visiting Odori Park with TV Tower in the background 
 Yours truly (KC Leong) posing with Henry, the experienced Japan tour guide
 End the day with a stroll along the famed Tanukikoji Shopping Arcade, the longest shopping street in Hokkaido
The tour ended with a delicious dinner savoring the long-leg big crabs – eat to your heart's content (free-flow request allowed). When exiting the restaurant, we saw the price list at the entrance that every plate of long-leg crabs cost JPY9,000 (RM340)
At Odori Park Beer Gardens with the guys on the final evening (before returning to Kuala Lumpur) ... When we returned from the suburbs to Sapporo on 19 July evening, we were surprised that there wasn't a single person at the Beer Gardens at 8:45 p.m. Later, we learned that the special event only opened a day later, from 12 noon to 9 p.m. daily. It was a stark contrast compared with the previous evening – the entire Beer Gardens were packed to the brim with people. At 8:45 p.m. the young sales ladies were walking around with placards signaling the last call to order drinks. . (this photo courtesy of Frankie Yap)  

Do click here to view Part 1.

Posted by KC Leong

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