12th May 2009 – Breakfast at hotel and then proceed to check-out as today we will be leaving to Lake Toya. We need to check-out by 10am but as our free transport to Lake Toya is scheduled at 1.30pm, we left our luggage at the good care of the hotel before strolling around. The good thing is that the storage area is behind the front desk counter, which means that any possibility of losing thing is greatly minimize. Then we went to Pole Town to have our caffeine fix at Starbucks – ¥860 Café Mocha x 2.
Ham & Cheese Bun.
Custard Cream Bun. Both total up to ¥225.
At most JR or Subway station, there are actually various sizes of lockers for you to store your stuffs temporary. The small size locker is priced at ¥300 for 12hour storage. Valuables are not encouraged to be left in lockers.
After lazing in Starbucks watching people go by for 2 hours, it’s time to head back to hotel to claim our luggage. A coupon was issued when we left our luggage and this have to be hand over to the hotel staff. Instead of taking subway, we decided that we had some spare time to walk to Sapporo while lugging our baggage along.
Took a rest at Odori Park. 😛
Reach our destination JR Sapporo Station after 20 mins walk. An accomplishment!
The meeting point for the free bus transport to Lake Toya – Esta Shopping Mall (a prominent building outside of JR Sapporo). We have to carry our luggage up the stairs. 🙁
At the top of the stairs, the building is JR Sapporo.
Some other malls/buildings facing JR Sapporo. It’s a gloomy day and seems like going to rain anytime. Glad that we have reached the meeting point prior to any downpour as we will be drenched as we do not have any raincoats or umbrellas with us.
2nd floor of Esta (also our meeting place). “BIC Camera” store for you to shop while waiting for transport.
I also noticed that there is a Sightseeing Bus Counter which provides “Sapporo One-Day Tour” at ¥5700, “Otaru Night View Tour” at ¥5800, “Lilac Tour” at ¥4100, etc. For the more adventurous, there is also “Susukino Transsexual Stage Show Tour” at ¥9900. Please do share with me on your experience if you do go. 😛
Information shown are Tour, Departure Time, Arrival Time, Fare and Operation Period – English, Chinese, Japanese and Korean language are available.
My favourite drink – Calpis Water ¥150. Smooth, refreshing and creamy taste with slight hint of milk, somehow like Yakult. There is also a carbonated version – Calpis Soda, which is exceptionally good thirst quencher during a hot afternoon.
Folks queuing to show hotel reservation confirmation and will be arranged a seat number.
Apparently, this makeshift counter provides free bus transport services to various accommodation (if you have reserved with them) under Noguchi Kanko Group. From left to right, Kohan Tei (Lake Toya), Gokiraku Tei (Lake Toya), Daini Meisui Tei (Kitayuzawa), Meisui Tei (Kitayuzawa) and Horohoro Sanso (Kitayuzawa). Our destination is Kohan Tei!
From the bus window, I took a snap of the scenery. The weather is not looking good.
Simply love the feeling of natural surrounding. Especially when there aren’t any tall modern buildings in sight.
A stop point for folks to answer the call of nature or just to buy some food. A slight drizzle have already started. This area is foggy and cold. I wonder whether we are at the highlands?
It’s so foggy that visibility is reduced. But I love the feeling! It’s like I am in the clouds. 🙂
Continuing our journey on the bus. It’s May but along the way, I still noticed some patches of snow.
After 2hr 30mins ride on the free shuttle bus, reached Kohan Tei. The view of the room standing at the door entrance.
Walkway to entrance door. The room is a combination of western and traditional setup – you can either sleep on the western bed or futon.
The tatami floored traditional room – comes with table, chair with zabuton and a separate armrest. No shoes on the tatami, please. Yes, the room is facing the lake!
Exploring the wardrobe – found our yukata and toiletries. Storage space available under the wardrobe.
The closet containing our futons.
Sneak preview of the magnificent view from our room window.
Toilet. Always small in Japan.
A garden (taken from room window).
Still drizzling but we still venture out!
A foot bath at the ground floor.
More fog building up. Weather is cold!
The right building is Kohan Tei.
The rain keeps getting bigger. I was hoping the free fireworks display will not be canceled due to bad weather.
Some shop facing the entrance of Kohan Tei. We wanted to take the Usuzan Ropeway Car but the weather forbids us to stray away far from hotel. The Usuzan Ropeway Car ride will take you to the top of Mount Usu, where you can enjoy the panoramic view of Lake Toya. For your information, Mount Usu is an active volcano!
Toyako Manseikaku (Beside Kohan Tei).
More shops. We also halted our plans to take the Pleasure Boat, which takes you round the lake and the neighboring four islands that make up Nakajima Island. Our main intention is view the firework display from the boat trip.
The sky is turning dark. We decided to have dinner earlier as we couldn’t go anywhere else.
Japanese dinner is served in-room. This dinner set is part of the room package.
The food is very well presented. 🙂
Dessert. It’s not ice cream but more like jelly and have a milky taste.
Yeah!!! Fireworks display still proceeded despite the drizzle. The 20mins fireworks display happens every night at 8.45pm during the period from 28th April to 31st Oct and is subjected to weather conditions as the fireworks are launched from a moving boat.
I went downstairs to try capturing more photos.
My camera doesn’t seem to be able to capture good shots of the firework so I went back to room to enjoy the rest of the fireworks from the room window. After viewing the fireworks display, I went to Onsen. Didn’t take any photo during then but it was a nice bath with fabulous view. For more information, please visit here.
Some snacks follows – Calbee Potato Chips ¥158 and Sapporo Classic (only sold in Hokkaido) ¥278. The 2 green cards are our breakfast coupons (part of the hotel package as well). Was quite disappointed that the rain have caused us to miss some attractions at Lake Toya but nevertheless still enjoyable. Went to sleep in anticipation of fine weather for next day!
五月十二日- 吃了早餐退房后我们前往洞爷湖。我们必须在十点之前退房，前往洞爷湖的巴士一点半才出发所以我们将行李留在酒店到处逛逛。方便的是存储区就在柜台后面，遗失行李的可能性非常低。我们到附近的星巴克解咖啡瘾。 两杯摩卡咖啡¥860。
洞爷湖巴士的集合地点- Esta Shopping Mall （高大的建筑在JR札幌站外）。我们得把行李炕上楼梯。：（
Esta 商场的二楼（集合地）。“BIC Camera”让你一面等待一面逛。
我注意到有售卖札幌观光巴士一日游卷，5700日元，小樽夜景观光5800日元，“丁香屬观光”4100日元等等。有冒险精神的人，还有Susukino 人妖表演 9900日元。如果你去过请和我分享经验。：P 显示的信息是观光，出发时间，到达时间，车费和营运期间 – 有英文，中文，日文和韩文。
显然的，这临时柜台提供免给巴士服务给很多家酒店（只要和野口观光集团定酒店）。从左到右，湖畔亭（洞爺湖），洞爷亭（洞爺湖），第二名水亭 （北汤泽），名水亭（北汤泽）和Horohoro山庄（北汤泽）。 我们的目的地是湖畔亭！
面对湖畔亭的店。本想达Usuzan Ropeway Car因为天气没法子。Usuzan Ropeway Car会带你到有珠山，可以看到洞爺湖的全景。有珠山是活火山！另一酒店Toyako Manseikaku 在湖畔亭旁边.