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Cape Erimo (Hokkaido) [E]
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Sat Oct 13, 2007 5:56 am Back to top

Cape Erimo


Apoi-dake Visitor Center


Samani Station


Trail to Apoi-dake


Erimo City Bus Stop


Cape Erimo Bus Stop


Samani Station Bus Stop

Erimo - えりも (襟裳 in kanjis)is the southern tip of this big rectangular shape that forms most of the Hokkaido island. I propose to compile all talks about this unexplored part of Hokkaido in this thread.

Even if Hokkaido does get his fare share of tourists visiting the various attractions the island has to offer, Erimo-misaki えりも岬 ("misaki" means cape in Japanese) is not really put forward by Hokkaido various tourism associations or tourist information centers. But still, if you venture in the TIC at Sapporo Station, you will find some very basic pamphlets about this area, in both English and Japanese. Basically, the region is famous for... well, horses, and also maybe the wood industry. If you are in the mood for a horse ride, it's probably worse checking these pamphlets out as they usually stress on the horse farms which can organize such activity for you.

Access :to get to the cape, you can rely on public bus transportation if you don't have your own transportation. Be aware though that traffic is scarce, and if you miss a connection, you're likely to be stuck for quite a while. Here are the two options to get there by public transportation from Sapporo:

    You can reach the town of Erimo by one daily bus leaving from Sapporo station in the afternoon, arriving at 8:30 PM or so. And Erimo is NOT Erimo-misaki yet. If you do so, you'll have to find an accommodation for the night and wait the following day to reach the cape using the morning bus.

    Another option consists in reaching sleepy Urakawa - 浦河 city by bus. It's about 2 hours South of Sapporo, past Tomakomai. From there you just hop on the train until Samani - 様似. The line follows the Pacific coast and the views can get really pretty at times. On the other side, there are good views on the Hidaka Mountains - 日高山脈. From Samani you should not have to wait too long for a bus going to Hiroo, on the other side of the Hidaka mountains range, stopping en route at Erimo-misaki. Check the bus timetables at Sapporo Station, if you leave early enough (let's say before 9:00 AM), you should probably make it to the cape by the middle of the afternoon.

Where to stay : I recommend the Apoi-dake Visitor Center, which is reachable by foot from Samani (one hour - 6 km), or by the same bus that goes to the cape : just tell the driver where you want to stop, and he'll warn you when you can hop off. It's like the second or third stop after departure from Samani Station. This place is a vast picnic/camping area, with a nice onsen nearby. It's likely to be closed offseason, so just pick your tent and use the onsen to soak your bones after a hard day traveling by bus (or hiking to Apoi-dake). Pack enough food prior to go to the campsite, as there is absolutely NO convenience store nor supermarket in the vicinity. Tap-water is available at the campsite or the onsen.

The cape :

The Hidaka Mountains range that divides the island into west and east part from the Daisetsuzan Area, falls away at the cape. Winds are really strong there, and it can get really chilly, even at the height of summer. Take warm clothes. The views are extremely beautiful, and the major attraction here is to catch a glimpse of wildlife : seagulls and other birds, but also cute Kurile seals (zenigata azarashi in Japanese) stretching on the rocks in the distance. If you can't zoom in closer enough with your camera to find them, you can still go the the House of the Wind - 風の館, which is a very nice museum explaining much things about the area and local wildlife, and try with their binoculars. There is a 500-yen entrance fee, but you can stay forever watching the seals if you want.

Of course you'll find plenty of tourist shops in the area. If you feel like it, you can also stay for the night at one of the minshuku at the cape. Haven't checked the price though.

--> my travelog
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