A Popular Tourist Site That Can Be Enjoyed in Many Different Ways! A Guide to Furano, Hokkaido
Furano is one of Hokkaido's most popular tourist destinations. It may be famous for its lavender fields, but it is also filled with many other must-see spots. Below are different ways to enjoy Furano area!
1. Enjoy Flowers at Every Season!
In Furano, various flowers come into bloom at different times of the year, such as lupines and tulips in May and blue salvias and poppies in June. The one spot you must visit for flowers, though, would have to be Farm Tomita. The Traditional Lavender Field inside this farm is blanketed in lavenders, creating a beautiful landscape that actually looks like a lavender carpet has been rolled out. This farm is also known for the beauty of its Irodori Field where the ground is painted in seven colors from such flowers as the purple lavenders, white baby’s breaths, red poppies, pink garden catchflies and orange California poppies.
2. Walk around the Famous Sites in the City!
Even the built-up area around Furano Station has spots you should check out. One recommendation is Heso Koen (Navel Park), which is a 2-minute walk from the train station. There is a stone with holes on both sides, also called “heso kizuna ishi” (navel bond stone), and they say that when two people hold hands over that hole, their “kizuna” (bond) will deepen. Another spot you ought to visit here is Furano Jinja (Furano Shrine), which is only a short walk from the park. It apparently grants prayers for business prosperity, road safety and marriage or matchmaking. When you're done exploring, check out the facility called Furano Marche, too. It houses various establishments such as shops carrying around 2,000 kinds of Furano souvenirs.
3. Explore at Your Own Leisure on a Bike!
Another way to enjoy Furano is to go around on a bicycle. You will be soothed by the idyllic countryside landscape while feeling the refreshing Furano air on your skin. A great spot for biking is Torinuma Park, which is located in the outskirts of Furano City. It is a scenic spot where the trees reflect in the extremely clear water of the marsh. The Naka-furano Town Lavender Field is also a popular spot that is accessible by bicycle. You can get on the lift and marvel at the colorful fields and the Tokachidake mountain range.
Sample bicycle rental fee (at Lavender Shop Moriya): 200 JPY per hour for regular bicycle (1,000 JPY for 1-day unlimited bicycle use)
4. Take Part in Fun Outdoor Various Activities!
In Furano, blessed with rich and vast nature, people get to enjoy a wide range of activities such as rafting, fishing, horseback riding and trekking. Of all the activities available, though, one of the most recommended is riding in an anchored hot-air balloon from Tour Guide Asobiya. When you think the thrilling sound of the burner has reverberated, the hot-air balloon will gently get off the ground and swiftly rise to 30m above the ground. You can enjoy a 360-degree view of the idyllic town of Furano, set against the backdrop of the majestic Tokachidake Mountain Range.
Hot-air balloon fare: Adult (junior high school student and older): 2,700 JPY, Child (3 years old and above): 2,160 JPY (incl. tax)
Availability: April 29th – May 7th and June 3rd - October 9th
※Photo is for illustration purposes
5. Savor Delicious Food!
Furano does not only offer gorgeous views, but also treats visitors to a wide array of gourmet dishes. It is home to various specialty items, especially cheese and wine. They have unique local dishes including Furano Omu Curry, which combines curry and omurice (omelet filled with fried rice). For lunch, you should try Curry no Furanoya, a soup curry restaurant that has a reputation for its thick soups that features ingredients from Hokkaido. You'd be happy to know that this spot has an extensive menu that includes Yawaraka Honetsuki Chicken (soft chicken on the bone) (980 JPY (incl. tax)) and Ezo Shika Frank (Hokkaido deer frankfurter) (1,180 JPY (incl. tax)).
Aside from the above, there are many other must-see spots in Furano, including wineries and glassmaking workshops. Be sure to check them out when you visit.
*Please note that the information in this article is from the time of writing or publication and may differ from the latest information.
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