The Northern Japanese island of Hokkaido provides a diverse and beautiful set of landscapes. The season variations here are very strong – snowy icy cold winters, late beautiful springs, short intensely hot summers, and autumns of red leaves.
I have a lot more of the island to explore, but this summer visited the Shakotan peninsula and the Daisetsuzan National Park which are stunning even though I missed the peak season as many of the flowers had already died off, and it was too early for autumn colours. Other daily excursions took me to Lake Shikotsu and Takino Park, which has the splendid Ashiribetsu waterfall.
The abundance of wildlife here is also surprising. I have really never seen such a number of dragonflies or butterflies anywhere in my life including atop Asahidake volcano where we saw vast swarms of dragonflies.
There’s so much more to explore – I can’t wait to go back (whenever that might be).