It’s Not Too Late to Enjoy a Winter Holiday in Otaru!
Hello folks! My name is Takahashi, I’m a curator here at UNWIND HOTEL & BAR OTARU. Our knowledgeable staff is here to provide you with unique local recommendations to ensure your stay is a memorable one. Feel free to ask curators at any of our LIVELY HOTELS locations for local info and tips. We are always more than happy to assist!
Today, I’d like to introduce one of Hokkaido’s most famous tourist attractions Otaru Unga or the famous canals in the city of Otaru. It’s a popular destination all year round, but it’s particularly beautiful in the winter.
Yuki Agari No Michi
Every year in February, the city of Otaru holds the Yukiagari no Michi Festival. During this time, the town is lit up by candles made from ice and snow.
The candles are made by 1000’s of volunteers inspired to share warm, calming and peace-filled days with their community. During the Yukiagari no Michi Festival you’ll see these handmade candles all around the city, but the ones placed at Otaru Unga canals are the main attraction because the canals themselves are lit up by candles floating in spherical glass on the water.
The candles are lit by hand one by one as the sun goes down. Sometimes they are placed in busy places like Otaru Unga, but sometimes you can find them even in small back alleys that people seldom use. It can be fun to make a game of finding all these secret candle spots.
Official Event Website: http://yukiakarinomichi.org/
Festival Dates: February 11, 2023 (Saturday) – February 18, 2023 (Saturday)
*These dates are subject to change depending on the weather and Coronavirus restriction. Please check the official website for up-to-date information.
Otaru Soko No.1
My favorite spot to warm up after enjoying an evening at the canals is Otaru Soko No.1. They brew and sell the famous Otaru Beer in-house and serve great German-inspired dinner fare.
The beer at Otaru Soko No.1 is overseen by a professional Braumeister (brewmaster) from Germany who also helps supply the wheat and hops.
A Braumeister is a nationally certified expert responsible for overseeing beer brewing, production, factory planning and marketing. It takes between four and a half to five years to get this certification.
Otaru Soko No.1’s dedication to craft beer has cemented them as a local fixture loved by locals and tourists alike for over 20 years. The fantastic German-inspired dinner menu also features fresh local ingredients. That’s why it’s my go-to choice after an evening of enjoying the Otaru Canals.
Otaru Beer (Otaru Soko No.1)
Otaru-Shi, Minatomachi 5-4
Open every day from 11:00~23:00
Parking Lot on SiteOfficial Website: http://otarubeer.com/jp/
For our guests traveling from overseas, I want to assure you that you can enjoy both of these classic Otaru spots without any worry about language or communication barriers. Yukiagari no Michi is an event where you can appreciate the beauty of nature and our city and I think we can all agree that beauty has an undeniable universal appeal. As for Otaru Soko No.1 It need not be said that delicious food and great drinks can transcend all boundaries too!