Walking tour for your first visit: The iconic sights of Sapporo

  • : 1 day
  • Route: Sapporo Clock Tower → Nijo Market → TV Tower → Odori Park → Ganso Sapporo Ramen Yokocho (Ramen Alley)
  • MAP

Sapporo Clock Tower ( : about 30 minutes)

Useful Info

  • About a 5-minute walk from the Odori subway station or a 10-minute walk from Sapporo Station.
  • This is a great place to start—it’s one of Sapporo’s landmarks and a spot where you can learn about the history of Sapporo and Hokkaido as a whole.

Sapporo has a number of iconic landmarks, but the Sapporo Clock Tower tops them all. Cherished by locals as a symbol of the city, this spot is the perfect place to start your tour.

Located in an office district in the heart of Sapporo, the Clock Tower couldn’t be easier to get to. A wooden building more than 140 years old, it stands out instantly among the skyscrapers of the city.

The Sapporo Clock Tower is the oldest remaining clock tower in Japan, and is still used today. Try to visit on the hour so you can hear it chime the hour.

You can even tour inside! On the first floor you’ll see exhibits, models and panels about the history of the Clock Tower, Sapporo and Hokkaido as a whole.
Upstairs you’ll see a statue of William Smith Clark, who created the conceptual design for the clock tower. So after taking a photo of the distinctive tower, go inside and take a selfie with the man behind it!

Click here for details on the Sapporo Clock Tower.

Nijo Market ( : about 40 minutes)

Useful Info

  • Around a 12-minute walk from the Clock Tower.
  • Head east from the Clock Tower and then follow the Sosei River south.
  • We recommend visiting in the morning when there’s the best selection.

After admiring the Clock Tower, take a short walk to Nijo Market to shop and grab lunch.

This well-known seafood paradise has a plethora of seasonal Hokkaido foods. Rows of seafood stalls and marine product sellers offer fresh and processed seafood. There’s fruit on offer too.

Each morning, all kinds of freshly caught seafood arrives at the market. Simply walking around and looking at the stalls is exciting.

From crabs arranged on ice to live scallops and oysters in tanks, the utmost care is taken to keep everything in perfect condition, and you can see from the shapes and colors how fresh everything is.

The market is also packed with restaurants serving a mouthwatering array of dishes. We recommend the seafood domburi (rice topped with seafood) in particular, so that you can try a variety of the seafood the market has to offer. All of the fresh seafood served here has a mild flavor with the perfect quantity of fat.

Click here for details on Nijo Market.

Sapporo TV Tower ( : about 40 minutes)

Useful Info

  • About a 5-minute walk from Nijo Market.
  • On a clear day, you can see all the way to the Sea of Japan.
  • The sunset view is also amazing.
  • Each season has its own beauty, from the gorgeous greenery in the warm months (May-September) to the fall foliage in October, the decorative lights from late November to late December and the snow from December to March.

The next stop on your tour is another famous Sapporo landmark: Sapporo TV Tower. When you come to the river from Nijo Market, look north across it and you’ll immediately see the red tower looming above the city.

Located in the 1-chome section of Odori Park, this 147 m-high tower adjoins stores that are perfect for souvenir shopping. But the biggest draw, of course, is the view from the observatory.

From your vantage point about 90 m high, you’ll see a beautiful view of nature and city streets standing side by side, including the whole of Odori Park. On a really clear day, you can see the mountains that surround the city, and you’ll marvel at their vastness.

If you have time, come back again at night. The lights make the cityscape look totally different. It’s particularly spectacular from late November to late December, when beautiful decorative lights are set up throughout Odori Park.

Winter brings a different view again as snow blankets the streets. In early February each year, you can see Odori Park’s Snow Festival right below, giving you a prime view of the enormous snow sculptures.

Click here for details on Sapporo TV Tower.

Odori Park ( : about 40 minutes)

Useful Info

  • This park runs from Odori Nishi 1-chome, where Sapporo TV Tower is located, to Odori Nishi 12-chome, spanning around 1.5 km.
  • Around 4,700 trees of around 90 species grow here, creating an oasis in the middle of the city that locals love.
  • All kinds of events are held here throughout the year, from a beer garden to the Snow Festival, so there might be a fun event for you to enjoy!

After enjoying the view from the TV Tower, take a stroll to the west through Odori Park.

Odori Park is an oasis in the middle of Sapporo, with sprawling lawns and beds of flowers. Locals love to stop for a rest by the fountains or on the benches, and it’s great for a stroll on a sunny day.

There are two Sapporo specialties you need to try when you arrive. The first is the grilled corn sold in a wagon in the park.

Prepared by grilling the corn in soy sauce, the combo of the savory taste of the soy sauce and the unique sweetness of Hokkaido corn will whet your appetite. You’ll wolf down this light snack before you know it, but watch out—the pigeons and crows in the park love it too!

The other great specialty is the chikuwa-pan from Donguri on the first floor of the Le Trois shopping center at the Odori Park 1-chome intersection.

Hollow rolls of surimi fish paste (chikuwa) are filled with tuna and grilled inside the store’s unique Japanese-style bread. Chikuwa-pan is filling enough to be a meal in itself, making it a great way to refuel on your tour. And this is just one of the unique and delicious bread snacks on offer, so peruse their range and choose your favorite! Enjoy it amid the beautiful nature of Odori Park.

Click here for details on Sapporo Odori Park.

Ganso Sapporo Ramen Yokocho
(Ramen Alley)
( : about 40 minutes)

Useful Info

  • About a 12-minute walk from Odori Park.
  • On your way from Odori Park you can check out Tanuki Koji Shopping Street. Hit the shops or just go for a stroll.
  • Ramen Alley is a tourist hotspot with over 70 years of history.
  • Enjoy the best miso ramen, a Sapporo specialty!
  • 17 ramen restaurants line the alley. The hours and days they’re open vary, so if you’re interested in a particular restaurant, check the details before you go.

Finish up your tour of Sapporo’s hot spots with a visit to Ganso Sapporo Ramen Yokocho, also known as Ramen Alley, to enjoy another great local specialty.

The quintessential Sapporo ramen is miso ramen. 17 restaurants, each with their own unique ramen, vie to be chosen by customers.

No time of day is a bad time for ramen, but there’s nothing quite like a hearty bowl of miso ramen after a busy day walking around the city. The sweet, soothing flavor of the miso spreads through you, relieving those aching muscles.

Click here for details about Ganso Sapporo Ramen Yokocho (Ramen Alley)
Click here for details about miso ramen.