Getting To Sapporo

Getting To Sapporo

Where is Sapporo?

Sapporo is located near the west coast of the Hokkaido Prefecture, the north island of Japan.

Flights to Sapporo

The New Chitose Airport (Shin-Chitose) is the gateway airport for Sapporo Hokkaido. The New Chitose Airport receives flights from other Japanese cities as well as Seoul Incheon, Taipei and Hong Kong. See our Hokkaido travel page for information on flights to Sapporo and you can look at flight routes here.

The New Chitose airport is located 47km southeast of downtown Sapporo (50 minute drive approx). To get to Sapporo from New Chitose airport, you can catch an inexpensive train from the airport terminal that departs every 15 minutes, and takes only 36 minutes.

If you arrive late at the New Chitose Airport, there is some potential that you'll need to overnight in a New Chitose Airport hotel.

Train to Sapporo

It is possible to catch a train to Sapporo from other Hokkaido cities or from Honshu (the main island of Japan). A tunnel runs under the ocean between Hokkaido and Honshu and there's a bullet train to Hakodate (in southern Hokkaido). See Japan Travel Navitime or Jordan or google maps for train routes, timetables and fares. Enter the station as Sapporo JR not the Sapporo subway station which is an 8 minute walk from the Sapporo JR station.

Getting From Sapporo to the Ski Resorts

If you don’t have a rental car, options to get to the nearby ski resorts include train, bus or taxi. See the respective getting there pages for more information:
Hokkaido Resort Liner (bookable from August onwards) provides bus transport from the New Chitose Airport or a range of Sapporo hotels. These buses are ideal for moving destination not for a day trip. See the Sapporo hotels page for information on the hotels the bus stops at.

Getting Around Sapporo

The city of Sapporo is very easy to navigate as the streets are set out in a rectangular pattern with a simple numbering system. The blocks (not the streets) are numbered according to direction. As an example, the Sapporo Beer Museum is located in the city block North 7, East 9, which is the 7th block north and 9th block east of the apex at Odori.

North of the Sapporo train station is the University area, with business hotels and the contradictory student coffee shops and cheap restaurants. South of Odori is a shopping district, with a large number of department stores and restaurants. The entertainment district of Susukino is between South 4 and South 9.

Some parts of the city are easily accessible on foot, although be aware of the covered mall in Susukino (the Tanuki Kōji Shopping Arcade) with its poorly designed floor tiles that are slippery, even if you’re wearing boots with super tread!

If it’s freezing cold, head underground. There are various shopping malls that extend for multiple city blocks and also a long tunnel that extends from the Sapporo train station past Odori Park to the Susukino area.

Other ways to get around Sapporo include public transport via a tram, lots of buses, and three subway lines.

Sapporo Taxis

The other option is to use one of the many Sapporo taxis. Just be aware, like most Japanese taxis, they are just small sedans without fold down seats, and many taxis don’t have roof racks. If you need to transport a large ski or snowboard bag you might need to be a little creative.