Area Introduction-Furano-Biei area

Furano-Biei area

Located near the center of Hokkaido, the Furano-Biei area is a particularly popular sightseeing region. It offers ways of enjoying your Hokkaido holiday every season of the year. In the summer you can feast your eyes on the widespread lavender fields, Shirogane Blue Pond and Patchwork Road, then in the winter, you can ski near Ninguru Terrace.   

Planning Hints
  • The lavender flowers are in full bloom between the middle and the end of June
  • The flowering fields that dot the area are best seen in July and August when you can count on viewing richly varicolored scenery.
  • The area provides all the cafes, restaurants, and lodging facilities you will need to enjoy the vast scenery unique to Hokkaido.
  • The area is surrounded by hot springs including the Mt. Tokachi Hot Spring and Shirogane Hot Spring. We recommend that you enjoy the delights of the Furano-Biei Area from a base in Asahikawa.

Transportation

The best way to move around in the Furano-Biei Area is by bus or JR. The Lavender
is a regular bus that passes through the major sightseeing spots in Furano and Biei. To see the sightseeing spots in Furano City, you should ride the Kururu Bus, Marugoto-Furano, a sightseeing bus that links the tourist attractions throughout the city. From June to September, you can enjoy the beauty of the area’s flowering fields and other attractions from the windows of the popular Furano-Biei Norokko train.
Another great choice is to rent bicycles to travel over the hills of Biei.

Furano Bus Lavender

This regularly scheduled bus travels from hotels and from Furano Station to Asahikawa Station stopping at the Furano Airport on the way. It passes by the sightseeing districts of Nakafurano-cho, Kamifurano-cho, and Biei-cho.

[Operating season] Year-round
[Operating hours] Check at the following web page.
http://www.furanobus.jp/lavender/index.html

Furano-Biei Norokko

A seasonal sightseeing train connecting Asahikawa Station and Furano, it travels at a leisurely pace through a pastoral setting, slowing down at scenic spots to give its passengers can enjoy an unhurried opportunity to delight in the magnificent views. The easiest way to get to the popular lavender viewing spot, Farm Tomita, is to get off at the temporary station, Lavender Farm Station where only Furano-Biei Norokko stops.

[Operating season] Operates on a partial schedule, mainly weekends, from June to September.
[Route] Asahikawa – Furano

Events

You must not miss the Hokkai Heso Matsuri a unique festival featuring dancers with faces called “Zubara” painted on their stomachs. As the dancers move, the faces painted on their stomachs in the unique styles of animation or kabuki illustrations shake up and down with the music to the great amusement of the crowds of spectators. We also urge you to come to enjoy snow huts and snow-tubing at the winter event, Furano Kankan Mura.

Hokkai Heso Matsuri
July 28 – 29

Furano Kankan Mura
Late December to early March

Sightseeing Attractions

Farm Tomita

This is by far the most popular and best-known place to see Hokkaido’s famed lavender. The lavender flowers bloom from the middle of July until August, and are at their best from middle to late July. Be sure not to miss the colorful flower-filled scenes in its gardens where seasonal flowers bloom: Traditional Lavender Field where lavender covers the sloping ground with purple, or Irodori no Hatake (Multi-colored Field) where you can see a rainbow pattern of colorful flowers.

Sightseeing Tips
◎ Don’t miss the Traditional Field and the Irodori no Hatake field. At their best in the middle of July.
◎ Whether you are looking for souvenirs or rare flavors, there is something for you. Lavender soft ice-cream made with lavender extract or other lavender themed gifts.
◎ The best time to enjoy the sight of the lavender fields is in early morning before the crowds of sightseers arrive.

Ninguru Terrace

This popular attraction on the grounds of the New Furano Prince Hotel features 15 log houses containing work shops and cafes in a woodland setting. Its atmosphere and expression are transformed, as in the afternoon, sunlight is filtered through the branches of the trees, then at night, it emerges in gentle lights. A perfect place for a walk and an ideal setting for romantic memories.   

Sightseeing Tips
◎ Take a break to quietly experience the woodland atmosphere on the decks and benches scattered along the walkway.
◎ Even more romantic in the winter when show drifts have formed.

Shirogane Blue Pond

A well-known attraction of Biei, this mysterious pond with its glowing blue surface is a magnificent sight you must not miss. You can enjoy a wide range of shades of blue which vary from season to season and with the changes in the weather along with the dreamlike atmosphere created by the withered Japanese larch surrounding the pond.

Sightseeing Tips
◎If you intend to take photos, we recommend the early morning hours when there is little wind and the sky is clear.
◎ The contrast between the white snow fallen on the frozen surface of the pond with the blue of the water is a miraculous spectacle only seen in the winter.
◎ From November to April, the site is lit up from sunset until 9:00 p.m.

 Panorama Road and Patchwork Road

Gently rolling hills and the mysterious scenery of Biei. The landscapes of Biei which feature a veritable patchwork of colors formed by fields cultivated with varicolored crops create an attractive view unique to the Biei area. In particular, Panorama Road and Patchwork Road are popular areas where you can find the most photogenic views in Biei.
Along the Panorama Road, you can enjoy the Shikisai no Oka, while on the Patchwork Road, you can find the popular attractions, the Ken and Mary Tree, Seven Star Tree and the Mild Seven Hill, views made famous by old TV commercials.

Sightseeing Tips
◎To travel on Patchwork Road, where you can view the dazzling scenery on a chain of rolling hills, we recommend you drive or rent bicycles.
◎As you travel along Panorama Road you will not only encounter majestic scenery, but enjoy many chances to get close to animals, an alpaca ranch or the Fureai Ranch on the Shikisai no Oka. This is a perfect excursion for you and your family.

Shirogane Hot Spring

This is a hot spring district at the foot of Mt. Tokachi with a full view of the mountain. It is also a great place to settle down to visit popular nearby spots such as Shirogane Blue Pond) or Shirohige no Taki (White Beard Falls) and savor the sight of the mountains and the abundant natural setting surrounding them.

Sightseeing Tips
◎ Pathways have been added to let you stroll around the hot spring district, fully savoring the natural life of Mt. Daisetsu.
◎ It is a popular place for mountaineers and hikers to stay when they come to challenge the Tokachi Range.

Local Cuisine

You will find plenty of cafes or restaurants to enhance your enjoyment of the majestic Hokkaido scenery surrounding you. Below we introduce places offering local cuisine that you must try during your sightseeing trip to the Furano-Biei Area.

Furano Marche

The delicious flavors of Furano all together in one place! This store spreads the news of the charms of Furano through its delicious food products. A place you can enjoy the richly diverse local foods of Furano in the restaurant and café or in the take-out gourmet shop. It even provides an all-weather atrium where you can relax and its Kids Space where your children can play.

Biei-Senka

This is an antenna shop operated by JA Biei to tell the world about the great vegetables grown in Biei. You must drop into the sorted fruit market featuring souvenirs and sweets made using farm-fresh vegetables delivered directly from the hills of Biei, the take-out gourmet shop, the bakery and restaurant that use local food products. Both offer oven fresh bread baked from Biei wheat.

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