Walking along Otaru’s Sakaimachi Street is like opening a giant music box. Though the city is famous for its canal area, the one that I will always remember is how sweet the chimes of music mixes with the gloomy cold weather at this port town.
The whole street of Sakaimachi is a showcase of two Otaru’s distinct characteristics- old architeture and one of a kind craftsmanship.
Inside the old brick walled buildings along the street are products that were not only nice to look at but something that were tempting to purchase particularly if you are into collecting charms and crystals.
If you have very limited time to visit each and every brick buildings, I would recommend to walk straight to the end part of Sakaimachi Street and visit Japan’s largest music box shop built in 1912- the Orgel Doh’s Otaru Music Box Museum.
Decorated with oil lamps and cobbled street, the 300m long Canal Area(Otaru Unga) is Otaru’s main tourist attraction.
The location of the annual Otaru Snow Light Festival, of course the most recomnded time for a stroll is when the lamps are lit.
Though there is a loop bus (Otaru Stroller’s) that will bring you from the JR Otaru station to several tourist spot, the town in general is quite easy to navigate on foot. Again, one of the many perks of the joy of walking is discovering places which might have been bypass by taking the loop bus, take for example the old Temiyasen Railway.
I would like to officialy close my Hokkaido related entries.
See you on summer Hokkaido!