All Year Round
As Hokkaido has opened up to international tourists, the region has gained popularity for its pristine surrounds and the amazing local produce that comes from the land and the sea. Local and international chefs have flocked to the area to take advantage of these great products and Niseko has become a food lover’s paradise. Aoyama Lodge is perfectly positioned to enjoy the fantastic restaurants from Annapuri to Hirafu and Kutchan. Options range from small yakitori shops run by old families to Michelin starred fine dining restaurants.
For a bespoke dining experience, Niseko Gourmet can arrange for a special meal to be cooked in your own chalet by one of Japan’s finest chefs. From a traditional sushi bar to an intimate sukiyaki meal, this is indulgence to the next level. Gourmet food delivery and grocery shopping are also offered in case you prefer to self-cater.
Acclaimed as Hokkaido’s premier health and wellness destination, Niseko is blessed with a number of atmospheric thermal hot springs, known as onsen, renowned for their relaxation and rejuvenation properties. Head into Hirafu for Hirafutei onsen that overlooks the ski fields or further afield to Makkari Onsen with amazing Mount Yotei views.
Niseko’s striking mountains and four distinct seasons has attracted many artists to the region over the years. There are many art galleries in the region showcasing local talent and artists from around Japan. Gallery Ram is just a short walk from Aoyama Lodge at Lupica and nestled in the Hanazono Hills is Somoza Gallery, built in a 150 year old farmhouse displaying artefacts from Hokkaido’s first settlers and art from around Japan.
For a night out around town, we suggest heading to cosmopolitan Hirafu Village and sampling rare Japanese whiskies at Bar Gyu or the vast selection of Japanese craft beers at Mick's. If you still have energy left, be sure to check out Wild Bill's for live music and late-night DJ sets.
The Nikka Yoichi Distillery is a popular place to visit and learn the workings of the world-renowned whisky’s first distillery, opened in 1934. Some use it as a halfway point to Otaru, the quaint harbour city known for is well-preserved canals, café culture, glassworks, music boxes and street side stalls plying amazing seafood.
For something more urban, Sapporo City is abuzz 24/7. Japan’s fifth largest city is known for its wide, tree-lined boulevards, ramen and great beer, as well as the annual snow festival in February featuring art and sculptures made of snow and ice, including snow slides.