Lake Mashu Muhyo
Frost and mist at the Lake of the Gods
Hokkaido’s pristine Lake Mashu is known as one of the clearest lakes in the world, and it's at its most translucent in winter. The surrounding landscape takes on an otherworldly air from late January to late February as the surrounding trees are coated in shimmering frost.
Lake Mashu's distinct shade of sapphire blue stands out vividly against the pure white winter surroundings. Parts of the lake surface also freeze over, creating impressive, constantly changing geometrical patterns, and a blanket of mist adds a mystical allure. Hokkaido’s indigenous Ainu community call the lake Kamui-to, or "Lake of the Gods," indicative of its otherworldly appearance.
Strap on a pair of snowshoes or cross-country skis to move between the observation decks dotted around the lake.
How to get there
Lake Mashu is a 90-minute drive from Kushiro Airport or Memanbetsu Airport. Bus services are available from Mashu Station starting in early February.