BumblebeeMum
Hokkaido trip with JR East-South Hokkaido Pass
Hokkaido trip with JR East-South Hokkaido Pass

Hi Bumblebeemum,

We will be travelling to Hokkaido next month

Day 1 – arrive Haneda airport 2:00pm then travel to Hakodate by train ( JR East- South Hokkaido 6 days flexi pass)
Day 2 – explore Hakodate
Day 3 – train (JR ES Hokkaido Pass) to Sapporo
Day 4 – Day trip to Otaru
Day 5 – Rent car then explore Furano, Beie then drive to Asahikawaya
Day 6 – Explore Daisetsuzan Park
Day 7 – Return car to Sapporo
Day 8 – Train from Sapporo to Yamagata for Ginza Onsen
Day 9 – Train back to Tokyo
Day 10-12 Explore Tokyo

Do you think my itinerary is flexible. i opted to use the pass rather than take the domestic flight because it comes out cheaper.

Thanks,
Tates

By Tates on May 13, 2016

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Buzzes

6 Comments

  • Tates says:

    Hi Bumblebeemum,

    We will be travelling to Hokkaido next month

    Day 1 – arrive Haneda airport 2:00pm then travel to Hakodate by train ( JR East- South Hokkaido 6 days flexi pass)
    Day 2 – explore Hakodate
    Day 3 – train (JR ES Hokkaido Pass) to Sapporo
    Day 4 – Day trip to Otaru
    Day 5 – Rent car then explore Furano, Beie then drive to Asahikawaya
    Day 6 – Explore Daisetsuzan Park
    Day 7 – Return car to Sapporo
    Day 8 – Train from Sapporo to Yamagata for Ginza Onsen
    Day 9 – Train back to Tokyo
    Day 10-12 Explore Tokyo

    Do you think my itinerary is flexible. i opted to use the pass rather than take the domestic flight because it comes out cheaper.

    Thanks,
    Tates

    • bumblebeemum says:

      Day 5 looks a bit rushed, but other than that it sounds like a great idea, using the JR East-South Hokkaido Pass. I am thinking if there is a way to maximise the usage of your pass by taking the train between Sapporo and Asahikawa and renting a car from Asahikawa since you have a rail pass. This way you can drive less and save on toll fees. The drive between Sapporo and Asahikawa / Furano is not that exciting frankly.

      Day 1* – Haneda Airport to Hakodate
      Day 2 – explore Hakodate
      Day 3* – Hakodate – Sapporo
      Day 4 – Day trip to Otaru
      Day 5* – Sapporo – Asahikawa, Rent a car to explore Biei and Furano
      Day 6 – Explore Daisetsuzan Park, Return car
      Day 7* – Asahikawa – Sapporo
      Day 8* – Train from Sapporo to Yamagata for Ginza Onsen
      Day 9* – Train back to Tokyo
      Day 10-12 Explore Tokyo

      * = 6 days rail pass

  • Shella says:

    Hi Bumblebeemum,
    Thank you so much for this informative post, very helpful for me. I’m planning an itinerary for Tokyo-Hokkaido from 21Dec-6Jan
    21-23Dec Tokyo
    24-30Dec Hokkaido
    31-6Jan Tokyo/Kyoto/Osaka
    Can you give me a feedback whether do you think this is a good plan?

    I’m still looking on how I can travel from Tokyo-Sapporo by JR Pass overnight so I can save on accommodation and sleep in the train, but according to my research on Hyperdia it’s seem that there’s no overnight train by JR for Tokyo-Shin Hakodate Hokuto-Sapporo. So, I just read your post, and I decided to spend 1 night at Hakodate as you suggest and continue to Sapporo the next day.

    But a bit confused, so can you please help to explain again what do you mean with this? – “As I mentioned above, the biggest disadvantage of using the Japan Rail Pass is having to complete the travel with 7 days. The flexibility of the JR East-South Hokkaido Rail Pass to allow you to stretch the travel up to 14 days is a HUGE plus!”

    So for my plan, I will need to buy 14days JR Pass and 7 days JR East-South Hokkaido Rail Pass right?

    Thank you very much!

    • bumblebeemum says:

      Yeah, I don’t think you can sleep on the train.

      If you buy the 14 days Japan Rail Pass, that’s the only pass you need. Alternatively you buy 7 day Japan Rail Pass (for 31 Dec to 6 Jan) + JR East-South Hokkaido Rail Pass (to cover the shinkansen between Tokyo and Hakodate and within Hokkaido).
      Note that JR East-South Hokkaido Rail Pass only covers southern Hokkaido (up to Sapporo / Otaru), not the whole of Hokkaido. Whereas the Japan Rail Pass covers the whole of Japan’s JR network, which includes whole of Hokkaido. I would probably go for the 14 days Japan Rail Pass.

  • Jessie Low says:

    Hi bumblebee mum,
    I will be travelling to hokkaido on 16 dec to 29 dec with my hubby n 2 teenage kids (18 n 14). Since is our first there, we don’t intend to drive but just take public transport. Prefer sightseeing, some shopping of course n skiing ( just want to experience snow) My initial itinerary :
    Sapporo
    Otaru
    Niseko
    Lake Toya
    Hakodate
    Do you think we can cover these places?
    What is the best onsen n foot spa?
    Which ski resort would you recommend? (Is our first time)
    We will be taking the 6+ am flight from Singapore to Sapporo by Scoot n coming back on afternoon flight.
    What is your recommendation on the itinerary, accomodation n transport?
    I intend to book my air tickets very soon as there are limited seats now.
    Hope you can assist.
    Thank you
    Jessie

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