Horonobe Visitor Center - Hokkaido

Horonobe Visitor Center (幌延ビジターセンターis the entry point in the Shimo-Sarobetsu Wilderness Trail Rishiri-Rebun-Sarobetsu National Park. It is located along Route 972 in Shimonuma, Horonobe, Hokkaido Prefecture, Japan.

Horonobe Visitor Center

Horonobe Visitor Center details

Horonobe Visitor Center is a two-floor free facility that serves as a toilet break stop and an observatory. There is also private free WiFi. The visitor center is not only a place to take a break from a long drive but also a place where visitors may learn more about the Sarobetsu Plain.

Horonobe Visitor Center - Horonobe Town, Hokkaido Prefecture


As mentioned, the Horonobe Visitor Center has two floors: the first floor is for exhibitions, some displays explain the history of the Sarobetsu wilderness, the ecology of the animals and plants that live there, and the links between humans and Sarobetsu in the past and today.

Inside Horonobe Visitor Center

2nd floor of Horonobe Visitor Center

Hishi Fruit

On the other hand, the second floor is an observatory room with multiple telescopes for viewing wild birds and also bears which occasionally visit.

Shimosarobetsu-genya Plain Picnic Site Area

Shimosarobetsu-genya Plain Picnic Site Area Map

Animals that are seen at Shimosarobetsu-genya Plain Picnic Site Area

Outside the Horonobe Visitor Center is an elevated wooden walkway that extends 3 kilometers from the visitor center to Panke Marsh and Lake Naganuma. On a clear day, Mt. Rishirifuji can also be seen from the walkway.

Team Nicerio visits Horonobe Visitor Center

There is a wooden elevated walkway that leads to Lake Naganuma

My family and I visited Otonrui Wind Farm for the first time last August 13, 2022, which was my 41st weekend here in Japan as an ALT under the JET Programme. It was one of the destinations that we visited on the 2nd day of our 5-day Drive Up North Road Trip. We enjoyed strolling and taking photos on the boardwalk and learning about the flora and fauna in the Sarobetsu Plain in the visitor center. Sadly, since we were pressed for time, we were not able to walk to the farthest point of the walkway. Regardless, it was still a very meaningful visit.

Horonobe Visitor Center Entrance Fee

It’s FREE to enter and use the facilities in the Horonobe Visitor Center. It’s also FREE to explore Panke Marsh via the wooden walkway.

Horonobe Visitor Center Operating Hours

Horonobe Visitor Center is open from 9 AM to 5 PM. It’s closed during the winter season which is from November to April.

Why visit the Horonobe Visitor Center?

Although the Horonobe Visitor Center is not a museum with hundreds of displays, it still has enough to pique your interest in the flora and fauna of the Sarobetsu Plain. Its wooden walkway makes it worth visiting, which offers you a chance to see the wildlife in the Sarobetsu Plain with your own eyes.

Getting to Horonobe Visitor Center


Sadly, no public transportation can bring you to the Horonobe Visitor Center. The best way to visit is by private vehicle or taxi.




Overall Rating


  1. Isn't it scary to go there? According to the sign, there might be bears in the area.

    1. There were other people in the area so we felt safe with numbers. =D


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