Today we fly to Bangkok from Hokkaido, where we will be staying for 2 nights before heading home to Singapore. We headed for Sapporo JR Station at 6.30am to catch or 7.05am train to New Chitose Airport. We wanted to cater sufficient time as we will be lugging our luggage and walking in the snow one last time before we head back. At the train station, we had to carry our luggage up 2 flights of stairs to reach the platform where we boarded the train to New Chitose Airport. I usually have the habit of reaching the airport 3 hours before flight in case there is a long queue at the customs. As expected, there is a long queue at the security prior to the immigration. However, after clearing security, clearing customs is quite fast. There aren’t many shops at the airside in New Chitose Airport, we spent our time in the airline lounge before heading to board the aircraft.As we were sitting on our seats in the aircraft, looking out at the snow-covered tarmac of New Chitose Airport, I felt a sense of unwilling to leave Hokkaido. Afterall we had alot of fun and did a number of firsts in Hokkaido. We did skiing for the first time, we built our first snowman, we experienced snow for the first time, we walked on the frozen lake for the first time, we sailed through the ice for the first time, we soaked in the onsen for the first time and soaked in an onsen in the snow for the first time. So many first times we have done in Hokkaido.
Traveling on JR from Sapporo to New Chitose Airport
Arrived at New Chitose Airport, ready to check in
Walking towards the International Terminal
The queue to clear the security is very long. Do arrive at the airport early
There are not many shopping options or things to do at the airside of New Chitose Airport. There are more things to do in the public area of the airport though
Relaxing in the lounge and grabbed some breakfast before we board the flight back
I quite like the pace of our Hokkaido trip, which we had time to leisurely visit the sights. Each day was planned with at most 3 places to visit. We had the chance to slow down our pace and look around us at the peaceful snowscape in Hokkaido. What kept us from feeling bored is the snow. We spent our time playing with the snow, walking in the snow and admiring the snow scenery. I thought travelling should be relaxed and not rushed (that is one of the reasons why I detest package tours). Travelling in Hokkaido requires a certain amount of planning, especially in winter where public transports are less frequent. Planning for this trip, however, is not difficult. There are websites that helped in the planning of our Hokkaido trip from the Hokkaido JR website to the hotel websites to the websites of the places we have been to. I find travelling in Hokkaido to be very pleasant, everyone is so courteous and made us felt so welcomed and Hokkaido doesn’t feel crowded. We will be back to Japan again, perhaps visit another city the next time we come back.
Aircraft taxiing to the runway
Take off from New Chitose Airport
We are going to miss the snow and the fun we had in Hokkaido
Farewell Hokkaido, Farewell Japan. We will definitely return to Japan