Japan Diaries 4: Day 294

Day 294: August 22, 2022

Monday- From Osaka with Love D4

Today marks the bittersweet end of our delightful 4-day "From Osaka With Love" road trip alongside our cherished Japanese family. As we woke up this morning, a tinge of sadness mingled with excitement, for although our time together drew to a close, the remaining hours before their 7PM flight beckoned us to create even more precious memories.

Midorinokaze Resort Kitayuzawa

Former Ohtaki Village manhole cover

Exploring the area around Midorinokaze Kitayuzawa Resort

Surprisingly, my wife just woke when I return after exploring the place

Breakfast time

Before embarking on our final day's adventures, we gathered at the restaurant area of Midorinokaze Resort Kitayuzawa to indulge in a sumptuous buffet breakfast. The array of delectable treats tempted our taste buds, and I made sure to savor each bite, anticipating that this hearty meal would sustain me throughout the day. With our bellies full and spirits soaring, we bid farewell to the cozy embrace of the hotel at around 9AM, ready to seize the day's opportunities.

Chitose City manhole cover

Since the airport resides in Chitose City (千歳市), our Japanese family suggested exploring the picturesque surroundings before bidding farewell to this enchanting region. Our destination of choice for today's itinerary was the captivating Lake Shikotsu, a place renowned for its beauty and serenity. With eager hearts and a sense of adventure, we set off on our drive, excited to immerse ourselves in the wonders that awaited us.

Team Nicerio visits Lake Shikotsu

Heading to the kayaking area of the Chitose River

As we traversed the scenic roads, the breathtaking vistas unfolded before our eyes, painting a vivid tapestry of nature's splendor. Lake Shikotsu, with its crystal-clear waters and majestic mountains, beckoned us to bask in its tranquility. We marveled at the reflection of the azure sky dancing upon the serene surface, mesmerized by the harmony of nature's elements.

Kayaking at Chitose River

Kayaking was a bit tiring but a fun activity

As soon as we arrived, we were thrilled to discover an array of activities to engage in. We couldn't resist trying out the kayak and the glass bottom boat. Gliding across the crystal-clear waters in a kayak was an exhilarating experience. The boat with its transparent bottom allowed us to marvel at the underwater world, observing the colorful fish swimming beneath us. It was like a glimpse into an aquatic wonderland.

Karin wanted more adventure

Glass bottom boat in Lake Shikotsu

Check out those fish

Inside the glass bottom boat of Lake Shikotsu

After our exciting water adventures, we decided to indulge in some delicious food sold at Hekisui, a local eatery nearby. The aroma of freshly prepared dishes wafted through the air, teasing our taste buds. We savored every bite of the delectable cuisine, enjoying the flavors unique to this region.

Checking out what to buy in Hekisui

Eager to explore more, we made our way to the Lake Shikotsu Visitor Center. The center offered a wealth of information about the lake's ecosystem, wildlife, and surrounding areas. We learned fascinating facts about the lake's formation and its significance to the local community. The exhibits and interactive displays were captivating, making it a worthwhile visit.
Inside Lake Shikotsu Visitor Center

We soon realized that a single day wasn't enough to fully immerse ourselves in all that Lake Shikotsu had to offer. To truly enjoy each facility and activity, would require dedicating more time. However, as the afternoon drew on, we had to bid farewell to this enchanting place.

Some farms along the road going to Eniwa City

Ecorin Village Welcome Center

Inside Ecorin Village Welcome Center

That's a cute Llama plushie

Leaving Lake Shikotsu around 2:30 PM, our journey took us from Chitose City to Eniwa City (恵庭市), where we planned to visit Ecorin Village. Unfortunately, our excitement was dampened when Ms. Sawa, a member of our group, was stung by a bee and needed immediate medical attention. The incident forced us to cut our trip short, as her well-being took precedence. Our Japanese family still had to return their rental car and prepare for their upcoming flight.

Ecorin Village

Although our visit to Ecorin Village was cut short, we understood that sometimes unexpected events can alter our plans. Safety and health should always be a priority, and we were grateful that Ms. Sawa received the necessary care. When we parted ways, we felt emotional. However, it wasn’t like what we felt before during our last visits. It’s probably because we know that we’d see them again soon. Hopefully, this coming winter break.

Urausu Roadside Station

My daughter with Usuko Ne-san (臼子ねぇさん)
After saying our goodbyes, my family and I drove back to Central Eniwa to gas up at ENEOS. From there, we drove back home. We did a quick toilet break at Urausu Roadside Station. I did not miss getting to the roadside station to stamp for my Hokkaido roadside station stamp rally collection.

Road back home

We got home around almost 8PM officially wrapping up our 4-day “From Osaka with Love” road trip.

Read more:

Japan Diaries 4: Week 43
Japan Diaries 4: Weekend 43
Midorinokaze Resort Kitayuzawa

Lake Shikotsu


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