Seishun 18 Trips

Travel by Local Train: Hakodate – Niseko – Sapporo

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Hakodate to Sapporo by local train. Between Oshamanbe and Sapporo, you can choose either via Higashi-Muroran (commonly known as the Ocean Line) or via Niseko / Otaru (commonly known as the Mountain Line). It is a long train journey from the nostalgic port town of Hakodate to Hokkaido’s capital of Sapporo.


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Not all services and stations shown.

Oshamanbe – Tomakomai – Sapporo: via the JR Muroran Line and the JR Chitose Line. Oshamanbe – Otaru – Sapporo: via the JR Hakodate Line.

Cheap Train Tickets & Rail Passes

Ordinary ticket (over 101 kilometers)

Good value. You can get off the train many times in one direction from the departure station to the arrival station. A limited express train is available for an additional fee.

 Hakodate – Tomakomai – Sapporo (via JR Chitose Line): Fare ¥6270 (valid for 3 days – daily cost ¥2090)

 Hakodate – Otaru – Sapporo (via JR Hakodate Line): Fare ¥5940 (valid for 3 days – daily cost ¥1980)

 Shin-Aomori – Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto – Tomakomai – Sapporo: Fare ¥8250 (valid for 4 days – daily cost about ¥2062) → Note: A special limited express ticket (特定特急券) between Shin-Aomori and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto is required to board the Hokkaido Shinkansen (¥4000).

Seishun 18 Kippu

The most popular seasonal rail pass with Japanese tourists, the Seishun 18 Kippu is five flexible days of unlimited travel on local and rapid trains for ¥12,050. It can be shared up to five people. A supplement is payable on the reserved seat (ordinary class) and non-reserved Green Car.

Hokkaido & East Japan Pass

This seasonal rail pass allows unlimited travel on the JR Hokkaido lines and the JR East Japan lines. In addition to it allows unlimited travel on the Hokuetsu Express Hokuhoku Line (Muikamachi – Saigata), the IGR Iwate Galaxy Railway (Morioka – Metoki) and the Aoimori Railway (Metoki – Aomori).

 Hokkaido & East Japan Pass Hokkaido Tokkyu Option-ken Ticket (北海道&東日本パス北海道特急オプション券: ¥6110: Valid for 1 day) that can be used with the Hokkaido & East Japan Pass, which is valid on the Hokkaido Shinkansen (between Shin-Aomori and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto) and JR Hokkaido’s limited express trains (non-reserved seats)

Planning Tips

 It takes at least about 7 hours by local train between Hakodate and Sapporo. It is recommended to get off the train at sightseeing spots or hot springs along the lines.

 Most of the regular trains between Hakodate and Oshamambe are 1-car trains, and trains with good time zones tend to be crowded during the busy season such as summer vacation. For long-distance use, it is desirable to board from the first station.

 If you are going back and forth between Hakodate and Sapporo, try changing the route between going and returning. The route via Niseko is commonly known as the Mountain Line (Yama-sen), and via Higashi-Muroran is commonly known as the Ocean Line (Umi-sen).

Waiting time for Oshamambe is often long. If you have enough time, visit Oshamambe Onsen, which is a 15-minute walk from the station. There is also a folklore museum and a library in the onsen town.

Shiraoi’s National Ainu Museum “Upopoy” is a must-visit place on this trip. In the summer, there are days when the museum is open until 8pm (don’t miss the projection mapping).