Where to Stay in Hokkaido in Winter: The Ultimate Seasonal Guide

** This is a collaboration post with HotelsCombined **


Hokkaido is home to many of Japan’s most famous natural sights and attracts Malaysian visitors all year around. Sapporo Snow Festival is the highlight of winter, while the enchanting cherry blossom season is the inspiring focus of spring. The summers are mild in Hokkaido, making this northern island a great escape from Japan’s heat and humidity. Hokkaido has an abundance of national parks that change colour with the seasons, most famously when they display outstanding autumnal foliage. With so much on offer in Hokkaido, choosing the time of year is a great starting point for your accommodation search. The location of the attractions vary from season to season, and getting it right can mean benefits like saving on travel time, or getting a better deal on your hotel if you’re interested in staying closer to particular sights. With over 300 million visitors per year to HotelsCombined, we’ve put together a list of the Top 20 hotels booked, and our top recommendations for each season. Want to know more about our top recommendations for each season of the year? View the complete Hokkaido Seasonal Guide.

Winter in Hokkaido
Hokkaido Hotels

Hokkaido transforms into a white wonderland during the winter months, with much of the island covered in a blanket of snow. Every angle becomes a postcard picture, whether in Sapporo or visiting one of the Hokkaido ski resorts. The island has a range of adventurous ski and snowboard slopes to suit experienced skiers, while the beginner terrain attracts families and beginners. Niseko is the largest and most popular ski resort for visitors but Furano and Rusutsu also attract thousands of skiers and snowboarders.Sapporo Snow Festival is another major visitor highlight of this season, taking place for a week in February. Many visitors look for hotels in Sapporo that are within walking distance of the festival’s three sites, while in the mountains they’re seeking easy access to the ski lifts.

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Popular Hokkaido Hotels In Winter

Best Western Hotel Fino Sapporo

Situated in the heart of Sapporo, this three-star hotel is ideally located for exploring the best of Hokkaido’s winter destinations. Visitors can walk to both the Odori and Susukino sites of the Sapporo Snow Festival. The hotel is only two blocks from the central Sapporo Station, providing an easy base for Hokkaido day trips. This hotel has a contemporary feel with modern décor and an array of inclusive toiletries. It provides excellent value for its central location and offers an impressive buffet breakfast containing both Japanese and international cuisines.

Star Rating: 3*
Price: RM119 – RM749
Guest Rating: 8.2
Address: 4-15 Kitaku Kitahachijonishi, Sapporo
Check rates | Official site

Hotel Monterey Sapporo

Hotel Monterey has been an iconic part of the Sapporo cityscape for many years. It retains a charming old-world feel, with a glamorous dining room and lobby area, although the rooms have been updated to reflect contemporary styles. This hotel blends Japanese and Western styles, making it a comfortable place to stay while still feeling somewhat traditional. Hotel Monterey is a ten-minute walk from Sapporo Station in a quiet part of the city, away from the bustle of Susukino. The Sapporo Snow Festival sites of Odori Park and Susukino are just 20-minutes away on foot.

Star Rating: 4*
Price: RM1150 – RM1085
Guest Rating: 8.3
Address: Higashi 1-3 Kita 4 Jyo, Sapporo
Check rates | Official site

Cross Hotel Sapporo

Modern and stylish, Cross Hotel Sapporo provides a luxurious base for exploring the many traditions of Hokkaido. It’s situated between Sapporo Station and Odori Park, putting the hotel within walking distance of the main Sapporo Snow Festival sites and many other city attractions. Day trips and onward travel are easy from Sapporo Station and is only a 5-minute walk away. While the nearby ice sculptures are cold, the atmosphere is warm and cosy inside Cross Hotel Sapporo, with the lounge bar a popular place to unwind during the evening. This is a four-star hotel with modern facilities and rooms that are larger than most Hokkaido hotels.

Star Rating: 4*
Price: RM141 – RM1498
Guest Rating: 8.8
Address: Nishi 2-23, Kita 2 Jo Chuo-Ku, Sapporo
Check rates | Official site

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Apa Hotel Sapporo Susukino Ekinishi

Upbeat, colourful, and uniquely Japanese, this modern three-star hotel reflects the ambiance of Susukino district. Susukino is Hokkaido’s major entertainment hub and Apa Hotel provides quiet rooms amongst the bustle of the surrounding streets. Facilities include an in-house spa and wellness centre, along with two excellent restaurants. The Susukino site of Sapporo Snow Festival is less than a five-minute walk from the hotel, while the Odori site can be reached on foot in ten minutes. It’s hard to find a better located hotel for the festival and Apa Hotel is also just a short train ride away from Sapporo Station.

Star Rating: 3*
Price: RM113 – RM1244
Guest Rating:
Address: Nishi 7-chome, Minami 4-jo, Sapporo
Check rates | Official site

Dormy Inn Premium Otaru

With its clean rooms and central location, Dormy Inn Premium Otaru is a popular choice for visitors looking to explore a variety of Hokkaido’s winter destinations. A charming sauna and hot spring is located on-site, ideal for visitors who want to re-energise when the outside temperatures are well below zero. Dormy Inn Premium Otaru is situated across the road from Otaru Station, where visitors can catch trains to Sapporo and the Sapporo Snow Festival; the journey takes around 30 minutes. This station also provides various train connections to destinations in Western Hokkaido.

Star Rating: 3*
Price: RM107 – RM1376
Guest Rating:
Address: 3-9-1, Inaho, Otaru
Check rates

Which Hokkaido season inspires you?

Hokkaido is dominated by national parks and a sense of wilderness, providing an outdoor playground throughout the magical winters, spring cherry blossoms, mild summers, and wonderful autumnal colours. With four distinctive seasons, choosing the right time is the first step in deciding where to stay in Hokkaido. Let our list of the Top 20 hotels booked on HotelsCombined, and our top recommendations for each season, inspire you with your upcoming Hokkaido adventure.Have you been to Hokkaido? Tell us about your Hokkaido adventure!

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About HotelsCombined

At HotelsCombined, we know that booking accommodation online isn’t easy, but we believe it should be. Having to trawl through a hundred websites looking at a thousand ‘deals’ can be overwhelming and complicated. At the end of the day, you just want to know you’ve booked the hotel that’s right for you – at the best possible price. We saw the opportunity to do something about this. Since then we’ve been working hard to find you the best hotel deals.

1. Welcome to Sapporo
2. AccuWeather.com
3. ClimaTemps.com
4. Hokkaido Tourism Organization
5. Hokkaido Railway Company

Do follow my adventures on Facebook here and Instagram here.

Also do check out my 8D7N Free & Easy Hokkaido Trip Itinerary here.

For my previous post on Tips to Survive & Navigate Japan, please click here.

For my previous Japan Kansai Area Trip Itinerary (Kyoto & Osaka mainly), please click here and here.

For my other posts on Japan, please click here.

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1 comment

  1. Thank you for the in-depth post about Hokkaido! I really appreciate when writers do such easy to digest breakdowns about each hotel or place in a city, it’s fun to read through and see the options for each locale! Makes me want to go visit!

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