The Oiwake Soran Line Travel | Things to Do

The spectacular coastal Oiwake Soran Line, stretch south from the Matsumae Peninsula to Hiyama Region, is the home of Hokkaido’s Japanese tradition and historical heritages dating back to the feudal period. Japan’s northernmost castle town Matsumae and once the island’s main trading center Esashi keeps tasteful buildings and traditional festivals. The coastline of Hiyama and a friendly remote island of Okushiri-to offers rugged headlands and pleasant beaches jutting into the clear ocean.


TO DO 01

Wandering Matsumae’s Castle & Temple District

Known as ‘Little Kyoto of the North’, Japan’s northernmost castle town remains the historic temples and ruins. More than 10,000 cherry trees blossom around the castle from late April to mid May.

TO DO 02

Discovering the Medieval Kaminokuni

Kaminokuni is said that Hokkaido’s first Japanese settlement dates back to the late 12th-century. Strolling around Katsuyama-dake, Hokkaido’s represented medieval castle on Io-zan overlooking the ocean.

TO DO 03

Listening to Esashi Oiwake & Strolling the Inishie Kaido

The small capital of Hiyama Region at the jump-on off point for ferries to Okushiri-to, Esashi was Hokkaido’s main trading center from 17th- to 19th-century. The town keeps the wooden merchant houses, Oiwake folk song and traditional festivals.

TO DO 04

Getting Away to Okushiri-to for Remote Beaches & Cycling

Okushiri-to is Southern Hokkaido’s only inhabited island covered with serene beech forest. This island has a couple of tranquil beaches, scenic roads, fantastically-shaped rocks and heartwarming hospitality.

TO DO 05

Touring Otobe on the Hiyama Coast

Otobe is popular in summer for its beach and that has attractive geographical features and scenic beaches.



TRAIN: Kikonai can be reached by the Hokkaido Shinkansen from Tokyo and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto, and the South Hokkaido Railway from Hakodate (1hr / ¥1170) via Goryokaku.

BUS: All buses for Matsumae and Hiyama Region (such as Esashi) are operated by Hakodate Bus. IC cards are available for use. 

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