Japan Diaries 4: Day 66

 

Day 66: January 6, 2022

Thursday - Maruyama Park, Hokkaido Jingu, and Maruyama Zoo

Once again, I wake up to the mesmerizing sight of a beautiful snowy morning in Sapporo City. However, this picturesque scene holds a touch of bittersweetness, as today marks my final full day in this captivating place. Thankfully, my dear friends have agreed to make it an unforgettable day by embarking on a back-to-back adventure together. Our destination of choice? The renowned Maruyama Park is nestled on the western side of Sapporo City. Our plan is to immerse ourselves in the park's wonders and explore the various tourist spots that grace its vicinity.

Maruyama Koen Station

Sums up our itinerary for today

As usual, we first had breakfast at Batch's place before heading out. Afterward, we went the usual route of riding the Gakuentoshi Line from Takuhoku Station to Sapporo Station. We then walked the whole length of the underground walkway going to Odori Station where we bought our tickets going to Maruyama Koen Station on the Tozai Line.

First stop: Maruyama Park

Maruyama Park with friends

Our first stop for the day was Maruyama Park. Since this vast park was just a few blocks away from the subway station we got there on foot. During our visit, most of the parks were covered in deep snow which means that we only have limited areas to explore. 

Maruyama Park

There were numerous food stalls at Hokkaido Shrine

After taking numerous photos, we continued to our next destination which is Hokkaido Shrine. It is connected to Maruyama Park hence it took us only a few minutes to reach it. We arrived, and numerous food stalls were set up on the shrine grounds. There were also a lot of people doing the hatsumode or the first shrine visit of the year. Since it was lunchtime already we bought food before continuing to the main shrine. I bought okonomiyaki and also tried the takoyaki. The food was affordable and tasted great. 

People lining up at Hokkaido Shrine for this year's hatsumode

Hokkaido Shrine goshuin

We didn't stay long though, we immediately proceeded to Hokkaido Shrine after eating. I did not miss the opportunity to get a goshuin (shrine stamp) for my collection. From the shrine grounds, we walked for about 10 minutes to our next destination which was the Maruyama Zoo which is still inside Maruyama Park

Maruyama Zoo

I got my ticket to enter Maruyama Zoo

These monkeys are living the life

Hi there Baloo!

To enter the zoo, we each paid 800 yen. Maruyama Zoo is home to approximately 737 different animals. We had fun exploring this vast zoo because it has so much to offer, as a matter of fact, we stayed until closing time yet we were not able to check out everything. 

Starbucks at Miyagaoka

Hokkaido Starbucks Tumbler

We left Maruyama Zoo a little past 4PM and headed to the bus stop at Maruyama Zoo West Gate and rode the bus to Kita 1 Nishi 27 chome which is a few blocks away from Nishi Nijuhatchome Station of the Tozai Line. However, instead of heading straight to the station. I told my friends that I'd have a quick detour to Starbucks at Miyagaoka to buy the limited tumbler and also the Hokkaido Starbucks Card while they can already go ahead to the train station to wait for me. 

Sapporo TV Tower

Tawakkie - Sapporo TV Tower

After fulfilling my plan, I met with my friends at Nishi Nijuhatchome Station. We happened on the subway and continued on to Odori Station. From there, we walked to the Sapporo TV Tower. I bought several omiyage there for the family of my Japanese godfather. 

Dinner at Kinnotori @ Sapporo TV Tower

Pork Cutlet Curry of Kinnotori

Since it was around 7PM when we finished shopping for omiyage, we decided to eat dinner before going back home. We found a good restaurant in the basement of Sapporo TV Tower named Kinnotori. It offers affordable and sumptuous meals and I tried the Pork Cutlet Curry.

Dinner done... Time to go back home

To wrap up the day, we headed back to Sapporo Station before riding the train to Takuhoku Station which is several minutes away from the place where we stay. Overall, we did plenty of walking today hence I treated myself to a dip in the hot tub. Before sleeping, I also finalized packing up my stuff for my flight tomorrow to Osaka to see my Japanese family. 

Comments

  1. Neil you write so well. i wonder if you can speak Japaese too . i am planning to travel to Japan next year too. keep writing and keep inspiring . Jacob

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Jacob! I really appreciate your comment. It inspires me to write more. =) Thank you!

      Delete

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