After dinner I decided I needed to see some of sights of Sapporo because I had a tour the next day and had to leave at around 5am the following. It meant this was pretty much my only time to explore.
I made my way down towards Ōdōri Park, making a quick turn off to the side to visit the Sapporo Clock Tower first.
Sapporo has a lot of interesting architecture. Among them are places like the Tokeidai or the Sapporo Clock tower. When I went it was late so it wasn’t open but people were still hanging around outside taking pictures. In the 1870’s it was a drill hall for a local agricultural school but in the early 1880’s they added the clock (from Boston). It’s now a museum which is open from 8:45am-5:10pm with the last entry at 5pm. It costs 200 yen to visit (~$2) and on the inside (and outside) is very reminiscent of architecture found in the Midwest. (USA)
Ōdōri Park 大通公園
Ōdōri Park was highly suggested by friends so I figured I might as well go and walk around. The park is pretty big with fountains every couple of blocks. The park itself takes up about 12 blocks and there are at least 5 water sources as you walk around. Since it was late I didn’t get to see all of the lush beautiful nature or flower gardens that make it a popular spot to visit and walk around. But I did get to enjoy a couple of fountains in the rain.
Another thing on my Sapporo to-do list I was able to accomplish while at the park. Coworkers and friends alike told me that an absolute must was to eat the corn. So while walking around I spotted a street vendor selling grilled corn and quickly got in line.
The sweet corn or とうきび comes in two versions, grilled or ungrilled. Each for about 300 yen. Apparently Hokkaido corn is so good you can also just eat it raw. I didn’t get raw, instead I got the grilled which they grill with soy sauce. I didn’t realize that when I bought it but as I sat down to eat in the dark in the rain I realized after awhile that all of my things were getting sticky from the sauce. I liked the way it had been done, wrapped up in plastic to keep it from being messy (didn’t fully work in my case) but also to protect me from how hot it was since it had come fresh off the grill and with a tooth pick holding the plastic in place that I could then use later. It was amazing. I loved it so much and was half tempted to get another.
A lot of my souvenirs were odd corn things. I bought Hori’s corn chocolate which is corn covered in white chocolate and Sapporo Okaki Oh! Yakitokibi (札幌おかきOh!焼とうきび) which is in the same style as the corn I got at the park which is rice crackers fried in oil that taste exactly the same as the corn I got in the park.
The park continues towards the TV tower, near which was one of the local summer festivals. It was really cool to watch for a bit before heading to the TV Tower.
Ōdōri Park is nice to walk around in. There’s a lot in the area, plenty of snacks and spaces to take a break. There’s also several beer gardens in the area which was why my friend really loves it. However, if you go in winter it’s a whole other world since this is where the snow festival is hosted. They also have several lilac trees so it’s stunning in spring.