10 Things to Do in Hamatombetsu

10 Things to Do in Hamatombetsu
10 Things to Do in Hamatombetsu

Hamatombetsu (浜頓別町) is a town in the Soya Subprefecture of Hokkaido, Japan. Originally, the area near the mouth of the Tombetsu River was called 'Tombetsu' after the name of the river. The name comes from the Ainu language "to-un-pet" (lake, river). It is said that this originates from the fact that the water of Lake Kutcharo flows into the river through the Kutcharo River, a tributary at the mouth of the river. The kanji used for the word hama () means beach.

For those planning to visit Hamatombetsu to check what it has to offer, here are the 10 Things to Do in Hamatombetsu:

Hamatombetsu manhole cover

1. Take a picture of the unique manhole cover of Hamatombetsu. So far, I have seen 1 unique manhole cover. It is common and can be seen around Hamatombetsu town proper.

Hamatombetsu Roadside Station

2. Visit the Hamatombetsu Roadside Station / Roadside Station Kitaohotsuku Hamatombetsu and buy products that are produced or made in the town. You can also get the roadside station stamp here for the Hokkaido Stamp rally booklet.

Hamatombetsu Shrine

3. Visit the Hamatombetsu Shrine. You can pay your respects and offer prayers here any time of the day. You can also get a goshuin here.

 Lake Kutcharo Waterfowl Observation Center 

4. Visit the Lake Kutcharo Waterfowl Observation Center and learn about the waterfowl that visit Lake Kutcharo and also about the importance of wetlands.

5. Attend the Hamatombetsu Furusato Festival held every first week of October (usually October 3) and enjoy the special activities like the scallop fishing game, all-you-can-stuff vegetables, and the free Akimi nabe.

Beniya Natural Flower Preserve

6. Visit the Beniya Natural Flower Preserve and enjoy the scenery while walking on the elevated wooden walkways. If you visit in mid-July you can see hundreds of poppy flowers in full bloom.

Usotannai Gold Placer Mining Park

7. Visit the Usotannai Gold Placer Mining Park and experience gold panning. The place is open from June 1st to September 30th. Who knows, you might be able to get some gold dust or gold nugget.

Hamatombetsu Onsen Wing

8. Take a dip at the onsen of Hamatombetsu Onsen Wing. They accept day trip bathers and the price is very affordable.

Kutcharo Lakeside Campground

9. Pitch a tent and camp overnight at Kutcharo Lakeside Campground. It costs 400 yen per person. On a beautiful clear day, you’d fall in love with the view of Lake Kutcharo.

Lake Kutcharo

10. Spend a whole day at Lake Kutcharo during spring or autumn to watch hundreds of migratory Bewick’s Swans. You may also pitch a tent at the campgrounds of Kutcharo Lakeside Campground

I hope my list of the 10 Things to Do in Hamatombetsu gave you an idea and inspiration to visit the town in the future.


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Japan Diaries 4: Summary


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