It’s Japan, but not as you know it.
The most northerly of Japan’s four main islands, Hokkaido is the country’s wild last frontier, a place that’s famed for its untouched wilderness and abundant natural beauty.
The elegant red-crowned cranes, the ice fishermen drawing catch from Furen frozen lake, the snow-shoeing along Ochiishi Cape and through the Narnia-like forests on the Shiretoko Peninsula… Sometimes I wonder whether it ever really happened at all.
But then I remember that yes, in Hokkaido you can actually see that steam belching from the rock vents on Iozan sulphur mountain. You can watch those ice floes drifting down from Siberia. And you can eat some of the best seafood in the world from the cold, plankton-rich waters surrounding the island.
I think you should all experience it too, at some point in your travelling lives. Hopefully this little chat I had with SKY Business News last week will be the inspiration you need to get you one step further towards to this magical place.
A huge thanks to off-the-beaten-track tour company Walk Japan for sending me on this assignment to Hokkaido, and I’ll keep you guys in the loop about my upcoming stories with all the dirty details for Traveller.