Hokkaido is easily accessible via a short plane ride to Shin-Chitose (Sapporo) or Asahikawa airports from Tokyo and other major Japanese cities. The rail service in much of rural Hokkaido is not as frequent or extensive as in the rest of Japan. While JR connects major cities and towns, outlying areas are best accessed by bus or rental car.
From Shin-Chitose Airport
You can reach ski resorts in western Hokkaido directly from Sapporo’s Shin-Chitose Airport via the New Chitose Airport Limousine Bus. Depending on the destination, the trip takes two to three hours. The ski resorts closer to Sapporo are best accessed by rental car.
From Asahikawa Airport
Central Hokkaido's Asahikawa Airport is within an hour's drive or Asahikawa Airport Limousine Bus ride from a variety of ski resorts.
While air travel is arguably the most convenient method to reach Hokkaido's ski resorts, JR operates the Hokkaido Shinkansen between Tokyo and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto Station in the island's far south. Travelers who have more time flexibility (or those with a Japan Rail Pass) should consider taking this trip.
An extra-long season
The prime destination for fresh powder