Temples near Hokkaido

Visiting my GF's family in Hokkaido (Biei, I think). She also wants to take me to sight seeing there, and any of the Prefectures that aren't too far away. I've always been pretty interested in Shinto stuff, so do you guys know if there are any temples worth taking a look at there? I mean like, functioning ones. I know Japan is pretty secular, but I would rather not hit up tourist traps.

Or if you have another recommendation, anything, really. Hokkaido's pretty rural, and I'm not sure if there are many interesting spots besides from the usual "beauty of foreign nature" thing.

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  1. 4 months ago
    Anonymous

    Does your gf have a sister you could introduce me to?

    • 4 months ago
      Anonymous

      She did.

      • 4 months ago
        Anonymous

        Nice. Later virgins

        • 4 months ago
          Anonymous

          Well, hope you have a shovel and a strong tolerance for bad smells.

          • 4 months ago
            Anonymous

            what happened to imoto?

  2. 4 months ago
    Anonymous

    >Hokkaido
    Actually, visit a farm. Hokkaido is the farming center of Japan and they're pretty friendly.

    • 4 months ago
      Anonymous

      I am not OP, but I am also going to Hokkaido in 3 days. I will be there a week. I have a driver's license and a car.
      Curious on recommendations. I am comfortable going extremely rural.

      • 4 months ago
        Anonymous

        Hokkaido is the largest prefecture in Japan but the size of South Carolina gives you an idea of the size. So firstly, Lake Toya is on the southern finger bit of Hokkaido and it's pretty, that entire Peninsula area is really nice but a bit far from everything else. Daisetsuzan National Park is in the center of the island and it's REALLY NICE. I will say, if you want to experience a unique Hokkaido experience, then I'd say check out the plains and various things in eastern Hokkaido as they are unique considering the rest of the nation's geography. This link might help you with some stuff.
        https://hokkaido-labo.com/en/doto-sightseeing-13209

        • 4 months ago
          Anonymous

          Thanks. I am looking for recommendations like this.
          I am taking the train to Hakodate them getting a car and driving to Sapporo. I have a hotel there for a week as a home base, but am looking for long day trips and overnight trips like you're recommending.
          Money isn't a big concern as I'm a working professional just looking to see a rural area. I kind of want to see a bear as well. We will see.

    • 4 months ago
      Anonymous

      OP here, sorry for taking so long

      Actually a good idea. Wouldn't mind that at all. Sounds good. If anyone has a specific one in mind, I'm all ears. If not, I'll just pick one from a map or something.

      Hokkaido is the largest prefecture in Japan but the size of South Carolina gives you an idea of the size. So firstly, Lake Toya is on the southern finger bit of Hokkaido and it's pretty, that entire Peninsula area is really nice but a bit far from everything else. Daisetsuzan National Park is in the center of the island and it's REALLY NICE. I will say, if you want to experience a unique Hokkaido experience, then I'd say check out the plains and various things in eastern Hokkaido as they are unique considering the rest of the nation's geography. This link might help you with some stuff.
      https://hokkaido-labo.com/en/doto-sightseeing-13209

      That's actually really helpful. I'm from South Carolina, so that gives me a pretty good idea, myself. Thanks for the recs, I'll check out the link and probably hit up that park. I'll also ask her if she knows of anything particular in the East like you said. If not, I might just ride over that direction without looking for something in particular, anyway. Always liked how Japanese plains looked compared to the U.S.

      what happened to imoto?

      Don't feel like it's right to go too into detail on here, so I'm just gonna say suicide and leave it at that.

      I think the most interesting there will be the sea, fish markets, and seafood.

      I was expecting that. 60% of Japanese food is seafood anyway.

      Cmiiw, Yamato people and religion is relatively new in Hokkaido so I'd assume that they don't have too many of the Shinto-Buddhist stuff going on there. Maybe visit the ainu instead?

      Oh yeah, that makes sense. Thanks, sounds really interesting from a quick google search. I just like any culture or religion I haven't been hyper exposed to over here, and I know basically nothing about this one, so it could be a cool thing to check out. Still, she told me her Grandparents(?) still practice Shinto, so there might be something in the area.

      • 4 months ago
        Anonymous

        I am not OP, but I am also going to Hokkaido in 3 days. I will be there a week. I have a driver's license and a car.
        Curious on recommendations. I am comfortable going extremely rural.

        Oh forgot to mention, go watch a Ban’ei race and make a bet. It's Horse racing but they're pulling a 1-tonne sled and is also a uniquely Hokkaido thing.

        • 4 months ago
          Anonymous

          Sure. I just got into Sapporo. Wish I had gotten a hotel outside of the city center, but live and learn.
          Very nice drive up, fall leaves.
          Getting soup curry, tomorrow I'll go do stuff.

        • 4 months ago
          Anonymous

          Thanks. Not usually one for gambling outside of friends, but I know it's a pretty big thing in Japan, despite being illegal (I think). Don't they get around it by not having the prize be money, but something you can exchanhe for cash at another building? Anyway, I'm not going until December, but thanks. I'm writing all of the things from this thread down and will cross them off my list ass I go.

          • 4 months ago
            Anonymous

            It's all weird. I was in a weird mall in Tokyo, and they had a weird tiny store that was just gambling and I saw middle aged dudes in suits playing baccarat and blackjack right there.
            Nagasaki also had a lot as well. I don't know what the rules are but if gambling is illegal, it is only technically so.
            My favorite form of dumb gambling was a crane game that had red bulls as prizes. And it cost 100 yen to play in a country where a red bull costs 200 yen or less. That's just gambling addiction at that point.

            • 4 months ago
              Anonymous

              Huh, interesting. I know gambling being largely illegal is why pachinko is so popular there, but that's not so surprising to hear how disregarded the law is, I suppose. Not like anyone can curate it, outside of "Casinos", there.

              https://i.imgur.com/lmr1FVY.jpg

              Sapporo Art Park was my favorite thing that I saw while I was in Hokkaido this week. I went about an hour before it closed (not enough time), and it had been raining during the day so almost nobody else was walking around. Not sure how busy it gets normally.

              The scale of the place is impressive, and the changing leaves make a great backdrop to the sculptures.

              I'm actually a pretty big fan of art in places like this. Gonna put this in my must see list.

              I'm gonna do this one Monday.
              I'm way the frick out today. I made it to Rausu. It's very pretty out here. It's super cold right now. Woo Nelly. But I live rural in the US, and I love rural places elsewhere. This is very nice.
              I bet on a Ban'ei horse today. I did not win. I also went to the National Ainu museum which was really, quite good. I got to carve a little wooden tag. Bought a book on the Ainu language for little kids; living life.
              Does anyone know how I can ship seeds back to the US? I found a place selling Hokkaido Pumpkin seeds and want to get some for my sister.

              Nice, gonna hit that up, too. I love Museums. I think shipping seeds is perfectly legal, you can probably just put a packet in your suitcase. I'd still google it to be safe, tho.

              I'm aware Hokkaido is an island seperste from the mainland, but its still relatively close. Does anyone know how much of a pain it is to get across? Like, is there a big bridge, or is it pretty much only crossable by boat or by air? She said we could go to any nearby prefectures, but she also tends to keep quiet if something would actually inconvenience her, so I don't wanna go if it would be a huge bother.

              • 4 months ago
                Anonymous

                Best I could tell is, there's a ferry if you want to take a car, there is the shinkansen that goes to Hakodate. Then there are trains on the island.
                I took a train from Tokyo to Hakodate then drove 4 hours to Sapporo, but I like driving.
                Otherwise, I found flights from Tokyo to Sapporo for like 50 bucks, it was cheaper than the train. I just wanted to take the train.

              • 4 months ago
                Anonymous

                Ok, that shouldn't be that bad, thanks. In that case, I'll porbably check out Aomori, Iwate, and Akita. I'll be in Japan for the whole month, and I'll be staying with her family while actually in Hokkaido, so there should be time to see what's up there and get a small hotel room if we need to. Probably will spend most of our time there in Hokkaido, though.

  3. 4 months ago
    Anonymous

    I think the most interesting there will be the sea, fish markets, and seafood.

  4. 4 months ago
    Anonymous

    Cmiiw, Yamato people and religion is relatively new in Hokkaido so I'd assume that they don't have too many of the Shinto-Buddhist stuff going on there. Maybe visit the ainu instead?

  5. 4 months ago
    Anonymous

    Sapporo Art Park was my favorite thing that I saw while I was in Hokkaido this week. I went about an hour before it closed (not enough time), and it had been raining during the day so almost nobody else was walking around. Not sure how busy it gets normally.

    The scale of the place is impressive, and the changing leaves make a great backdrop to the sculptures.

    • 4 months ago
      Anonymous

      I'm gonna do this one Monday.
      I'm way the frick out today. I made it to Rausu. It's very pretty out here. It's super cold right now. Woo Nelly. But I live rural in the US, and I love rural places elsewhere. This is very nice.
      I bet on a Ban'ei horse today. I did not win. I also went to the National Ainu museum which was really, quite good. I got to carve a little wooden tag. Bought a book on the Ainu language for little kids; living life.
      Does anyone know how I can ship seeds back to the US? I found a place selling Hokkaido Pumpkin seeds and want to get some for my sister.

      • 4 months ago
        Anonymous

        And to be clear, when I ask about shipping seeds back to the US, I'm asking about the legality of shopping agricultural products.

      • 4 months ago
        Anonymous

        >Does anyone know how I can ship seeds back to the US? I found a place selling Hokkaido Pumpkin seeds and want to get some for my sister.
        You will not succeed.
        You could try to do so illegally of course, however, that would be a very bad plan.

        • 4 months ago
          Anonymous

          So, it's illegal is what you're saying? I got such conflicted messages on websites about this. I would be happy to declare them to customs and have them take it if it's a problem. My sister does a lot of planting and I thought it would be nice to bring her Hokkaido pumpkin seeds.
          Though, I ultimately didn't find a seed store. The two stores I tried were only selling flower seeds. So, it's kind of a meaningless issue now.

          • 4 months ago
            Anonymous

            Transporting seeds is a generally bad idea as it can introduce pests that may have no natural predator, or disease that can spread to other plants. You will likely need a permit, and it's helpful to know the exact species.

            More info here, I'm not an expert on the subject.
            https://acir.aphis.usda.gov/s/acir-global-search?category=Plants-for-Planting-and-Propagation

            https://www.aphis.usda.gov/aphis/ourfocus/planthealth/import-information

  6. 4 months ago
    Anonymous

    >sight seeing
    It's "site seeing". I can understand the two being easy to confuse considering the pronunciation, but technically anything you see is a sight, and it would be quite redundant yet void of information to describe just about any activity as "sight seeing".

    • 4 months ago
      Anonymous

      Both are correct anon, as one can see "great sights" like a mountain pass or interesting sites like a temple or historical location.

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