HakodateJapan

Image for Hakodate showing heritage elements and a sunset

Visit Hakodate

This large city on Japan’s northernmost island has a medley of architectural styles, spectacular nature and some of the freshest seafood in the country.

Hakodate is one of the largest cities on Hokkaido, Japan’s northernmost island. Visit this waterfront city to enjoy stunning views, fresh seafood and a variety of cultural attractions. Hakodate was among the first Japanese harbor cities to open up to international trade following the Edo Period’s self-imposed national isolation from 1615 to 1868. Due to this, the island exhibits significant overseas influence in its architecture and culture.

Stroll through Motomachi, the former residential district of Hakodate’s foreign population. This slice of Europe features a Russian Orthodox Church and the Old British Consulate. Fort Goryokaku, a Western-style citadel in the shape of a star, is one of Hakodate’s most remarkable attractions. It was built at the end of the Edo Period to defend the city against the threat of Western imperialism. By 1910, the fort had lost its military importance and was converted into a public park.

Over a thousand cherry trees line Fort Goryokaku’s moats. Visit in early May to see the blossoms flowering. The Former Magistrate Office sits at the center of the fort. Although the original office was destroyed after the fall of the shogunate, the city meticulously built a reconstruction. To see a bird’s eye view of Fort Goryokaku, ascend to the observation deck of the adjacent Goryokaku Tower.

Make the half-hour trip outside the city to Onuma Park. This Quasi-National Park surrounds Onuma Lake and Konuma Lake. Hike or ride along the lakes’ shorelines on a well-maintained network of trails. Take a boat out to go fishing or sightseeing. The expansive Onuma Lake has 126 islands to explore. The dormant volcano Mount Komagatake serves as the park’s majestic backdrop.

Although Hokkaido is the second largest of Japan’s four primary islands, it is also the least developed. Winters are very cold and snowy, while summers are sunny but mild. Every season, visitors flock to Hokkaido to go skiing, hiking and camping. You can easily reach most of the island’s natural attractions from Hakodate.

Where to stay in Hakodate

Motomachi, Hakodate, Japan

Motomachi

5/5Exceptional!(3 area reviews)

Motomachi is noteworthy for its restaurants, and you can make a stop at top attractions like Old Public Hall of Hakodate Ward and Kyu Soma-tei.

Motomachi

Top Hotels in Hakodate

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
Four Points by Sheraton Hakodate
Four Points by Sheraton Hakodate
3.5 out of 5
14-10 Wakamatsu-cho, Hakodate
¥6,281
per night
Feb 21 - Feb 22

Situated in Hakodate, this spa hotel is 0.1 mi (0.1 km) from Morning Market and 2.3 mi (3.7 km) from Goryokaku Tower. Ekini Fish Market and Hakodate Seikan Renrakusen ...

4.3/5Excellent! (1,068 reviews)

"Good location, good services, room have view. Breakfast buffet is excellance and good values."…"

Reviewed on Jan 13, 2020

Four Points by Sheraton Hakodate
Hotel Paco Hakodate
Hotel Paco Hakodate
3.5 out of 5
Omori-cho 25-3, Hakodate, Hokkaido
¥5,727
per night
Feb 10 - Feb 11

Situated in Hakodate, this hotel is 0.5 mi (0.9 km) from Hakodate City Office and within 3 mi (5 km) of Goryokaku Tower and Yunokawa Hot Spring. Morning Market ...

4.5/5Wonderful! (1,059 reviews)

"Big and clean room, about 900m away from Hakodate station. You can either walk or use tram (only 1 stop) to reach the hotel. Onsen is clean and full of amenities, e.g. hair dryer, comb, shower cream, shampoo, conditioner, etc."…"

Reviewed on Jan 7, 2020

Hotel Paco Hakodate
La Vista Hakodate Bay
La Vista Hakodate Bay
4 out of 5
12-6 Toyokawacho, Hakodate, Hokkaido
¥14,546
per night
Jan 24 - Jan 25

Situated by the sea, this spa hotel is 0.1 mi (0.2 km) from Kanemori Red Brick Warehouse and 3 mi (4.8 km) from Goryokaku Tower. Hakodate Takadaya Kahei Museum ...

4.4/5Excellent! (600 reviews)

"Generally there was nothing bad that we could say about this place Other than the fact that they have a smoking area or room in the lobby which does make the area stink like cigarettes smoke a little bit . We never asked about a late check out but it would be nice to have that option when you have ..."…"

Reviewed on Dec 28, 2019

La Vista Hakodate Bay

Popular things to do in Hakodate

Mount Hakodate
Image for Mount Hakodate

Mount Hakodate

4.5/5(26 reviews)

Appreciate captivating views of Hakodate’s skyline, surrounding coast and glittering city lights from atop this central city mountain, accessible via a scenic cable car.

Goryokaku Tower
Image for Goryokaku Tower

Goryokaku Tower

4.5/5(15 reviews)

Enjoy a unique overlook of Hakodate’s city skyline, surrounding mountain ranges and distant coastline from this modern observation tower and history gallery.

Fort Goryokaku
Image for Fort Goryokaku

Fort Goryokaku

4.5/5(17 reviews)

Walk around the enchanting grounds of this repurposed military fort shaped like a star and see historic architecture and magnificent cherry blossoms in springtime.

Morning Market
Image for Morning Market

Morning Market

4.5/5(27 reviews)

Start your day with delectable fruit, vegetables and freshly made breakfast in this buzzing market selling Hakodate’s freshest seasonal produce and seafood.

Hakodate Ropeway
Image for Hakodate Ropeway

Hakodate Ropeway

4/5(30 reviews)

Enjoy an outing to Hakodate Ropeway during your stay in Hakodate. While in this walkable area, find time to visit its shops.

Old Public Hall of Hakodate Ward
Image for Old Public Hall of Hakodate Ward

Old Public Hall of Hakodate Ward

4/5(2 reviews)

Step back in time and learn more about local history with a stop at Old Public Hall of Hakodate Ward in Hakodate. While in this walkable area, find time to visit its shops.

Top activities in Hakodate

Bar hopping in Hakodate with a local guide!
Image for Bar hopping in Hakodate with a local guide!

Bar hopping in Hakodate with a local guide!

¥12,123

Itinerary This is a typical itinerary for this product Stop At: Hakodate, Hakodate, Hokkaido Hopping 3 local Izakaya(Bar) in Goryokaku Duration: 1 hour

Fish auction & Morning market tour
Image for Fish auction & Morning market tour

Fish auction & Morning market tour

¥3,182

Itinerary This is a typical itinerary for this product Stop At: 函館魚市場(株), 27-6 Toyokawachō, Hakodate, Hokkaido 040-0065, Japan →Start fish auction at 6 am (It takes about 20-60 min depends on number of fishes) →Look around inside fish auction place Duration: 1 hour Stop At: Hakodate Morning Market, JR Hakodate Station, Hakodate Hokkaido I will show you and explain about Morning market.

Hiking tour to historic and hidden fortresses at Mt. Hakodate!
Image for Hiking tour to historic and hidden fortresses at Mt. Hakodate!

Hiking tour to historic and hidden fortresses at Mt. Hakodate!

¥8,082

Itinerary This is a typical itinerary for this product Stop At: Mount Hakodate, Hakodate 040-0000 Hokkaido This tour includes the visit to historic and hidden fortresses. I will also take you to a special view from Mt. Hakodate even in the daytime! D

Reviews of Hakodate

4.7

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
37
5 - Excellent 69.81132075471699%
4 - Good
16
4 - Good 30.18867924528302%
3 - Okay
0
3 - Okay 0%
2 - Disappointing
0
2 - Disappointing 0%
1 - Terrible
0
1 - Terrible 0%

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Dec 8, 2019

The bus system is very convenient and everything is closely located. The only note is to make sure if you are coming in the Shinkansen, is to take the line to/from Shin Hakodate.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Oct 23, 2019

Safe , quiet . The morning market was really good .

4/5 - Good

Verified traveler

Aug 16, 2019

Gyorokukan (sp?) next to the tower was excellent - recommend going into the resident museum (¥500) which is newly renovated and informative. Nearby the northern museum was good though limited in the way of English display descriptions.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Aug 2, 2019

Very good fireworks display at the start of the August festival.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Jul 12, 2019

Capsule Hotel Hakodate. Eat crab tempura anywhere in Hakodate. The place has a warm and welcoming vibe.

4/5 - Good

Verified traveler

Jun 25, 2019

函館は小さい町なので、駅や空港への移動が便利です。でも観光する場所は限られているかな。

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