Highlights and access methods of Otaru Canal (Hokkaido Prefecture)

In this article, we will explain the attractions of Otaru Canal in Hokkaido Prefecture and how to access it for those who are traveling to Japan from overseas.

Otaru Canal(0)

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(Prefecture : Hokkaido , Category : Townscapes and Area)

About Otaru Canal

Otaru Canal is a notable tourist attraction located in Otaru, a charming port city in Hokkaido, Japan. The canal was once a central part of the city's busy port, with warehouses lining its sides. Today, the beautifully restored and preserved warehouses, along with the nostalgic gas lamps, provide a glimpse into the city's rich history. Visitors can enjoy leisurely walks along the canal, take a scenic boat ride, or explore the many shops, cafes, and restaurants in the area. During the evening, the canal is illuminated, creating a magical and romantic atmosphere that attracts both tourists and locals alike.

Highlights of Otaru Canal

Otaru Canal is a charming and picturesque destination located in the port city of Otaru, Hokkaido, Japan. This historic canal, lined with beautiful, old-fashioned warehouses and gas street lamps, is a favorite spot among tourists for its romantic and nostalgic atmosphere.

The canal was built in the early 20th century for transportation purposes and played a significant role in Otaru's development as a thriving port city. Today, the well-preserved warehouses along the canal have been transformed into restaurants, shops, and museums, offering visitors a glimpse into the city's rich history and culture.

A leisurely stroll along the canal's promenade is a must, as you can admire the beautiful architecture and take in the scenic views. A popular activity among tourists is taking a ride on the charming Otaru Canal Cruise, which offers a relaxing and unique way to explore the city from the water.

One of the best times to visit Otaru Canal is during the winter season, particularly in February, when the city hosts the Otaru Snow Light Path Festival. This enchanting event features hundreds of snow lanterns and small snow sculptures placed along the canal and throughout the city. The soft glow of the lanterns reflecting off the water creates an unforgettable, dreamlike atmosphere that is sure to leave a lasting impression on visitors.

However, Otaru Canal is beautiful throughout the year, with each season offering its own distinct charm. Spring brings cherry blossoms, summer offers pleasant weather for outdoor activities, and autumn showcases a stunning array of colorful foliage. No matter when you visit, the captivating beauty and charm of Otaru Canal are sure to make your trip a memorable one.

Address and access method of Otaru Canal

Otaru Canal is located in Otaru, a city in Hokkaido, Japan. The street address for the canal is 5 Chome Minatomachi, Otaru City, Hokkaido, 047-0007.

The nearest station to Otaru Canal is Otaru Station, which is served by the JR Hokkaido Hakodate Main Line. From Otaru Station, it is approximately a 10-15 minute walk to the canal. Upon exiting the station, head towards the southeast and follow the signs or use a map to guide you to the canal area. Alternatively, you can also take a short taxi ride from the station to the canal.

Attractions near Otaru Canal

Several notable attractions are located near Otaru Canal:

Sakaimachi Street
A charming, historic shopping street lined with well-preserved buildings, boutique shops, cafes, and restaurants. Don't miss the famous Otaru Music Box Museum and LeTAO for delicious sweets.

Otaru City Museum
Learn about Otaru's rich history and culture through various exhibits, including the history of the canal and the city's role as a major trading port.

Otaru Aquarium
A popular attraction featuring marine life from Hokkaido's waters, entertaining performances, and interactive experiences.

Herring Mansion (Nishin Goten)
A well-preserved historical building that once belonged to a wealthy herring fishery owner, providing a glimpse into the region's prosperous past.

Mount Tengu (Tenguyama)
Accessible by ropeway, this mountain offers stunning panoramic views of Otaru and the surrounding area. It's also a popular destination for skiing and snowboarding during the winter.

Otaru Glassworks
Experience the beauty of Otaru's renowned glass craftsmanship through workshops and glassware shopping.

Nikka Whisky Yoichi Distillery
Located a short train ride away from Otaru, this distillery offers guided tours, whisky tasting, and a deeper understanding of the whisky-making process.

These attractions, combined with the charm of Otaru Canal, make for a memorable and diverse experience in this picturesque port city.

Other information about Otaru Canal

Official site (Japanese only) about Otaru Canal :


Otaru Canal(1)

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Thank you for reading to the end.

( Written by Tatsuo Ikura )