Sapporo: the northern Tokyo.
For those who have been to the northern city hopefully you can see where my discription is coming from. Sapporo shares a few similarties to Tokyo: has a fairly big train system, a lot of people (compared to the other cities I have gone to), shopping malls in train station, ect. I would say you could spend multiple days walking around Sapporo depending on what you are doing, and that it is a good city to have as a base if you are looking to do day trips. Sapporo has very interesting quisine, and the fish here is fresh and amazing! For those that like the cold and want to see some snow Hokkaido is the place to be. I am sad I will not be there for the snow festivals, but the illumination set up they have that spreads down their main park strip, Odori Park, is beautiful and spectacular!
Here are a couple of my food/ locations that I would recommend trying/going to:
1) Seafood bowl (Donburi)
There are many variations of the seafood bowl but typically it would have various kinds of seafood. The one I had was mostly salmon. Depending on what kind you get it and where you get it can cost as little as 1000 yen (10 USD).
2) Buttercorn Ramen
This type of ramen is pretty famous around Hokkaido, and as you may see when you come in, corn is a staple crop of Hokkaido. This ramen was one of the more flavorful ones thanks to the butter added to it.
3) Genghis Khan
Typically this will cost you about, minimally, 3000 yen (30 USD), and if you go to the Beer Museum in Sapporo this will be an all you can eat style meal for 90 minutes - 120 minutes. With this you grill your own meat and vegetables. WARNING: whatever clothes you wear there will most likely smell like meat for a few days.
4) Sapporo TV Tower (night)
During the winter this tower was all lit up along with the Winter Illumination display, and it was worth a visit. Also during the day you can go up to it's observatory, which you have to pay for, and get an overview look. (Photo in the last post)
5) Old Government Building (night)
The Government Building is a good place to pick up tourist pamphlets, and learn a little bit of history. Otherwise if that is not your cup of tea you can check this out for the light display it has in the winter. (Sorry for the blurring photo)
6) Ishiya Chocolate Factory
Although at the time the factory part was closed, like the rest of Sapporo it has beautiful winter decorations up, and is a good spot to get some icecream and chocolates.
7) Mt. Moiwa (night)
Like the Sapporo TV Tower, you can take a ropeway up Mt. Moiwa and get a pretty overview look of Sapporo's city lights. Although it will be pretty cold. It cost between 1000 and 2000 yen to go up (10 - 20 USD). It is difficult, as I learned, to take nighttime pictures!
See you in the next adventure!