Hokkaido, Shiretoko / Abashiri (Living), Other Hokkaido Locations
23 hours on average
3 days ago
I used to be a high school English teacher at the public high school in Hokkaido. I retired from an English teacher 6 years ago and I got a license of the national government licensed guide interpreter. I live in a small city named Abashiri, which is located in the eastern part of Hokkaido island, Japan and very rich in nature. Abashiri is surrounded by natural beauty such as lakes, rivers and mountains. I like to go hiking in the mountains near our city all year round. In spring, we can see beautiful peaks crwoned with remaining snow, in summer there are a lot of alpine flowers, in autumn we can see gorgeous autumn colors and in winter we can enjoy snowshoeing in the small mountains on sunny days and seeing beautiful Okhotsk Sea covered with drift ice. I would like you to enjoy walking in the forests while hearing birds singing. I hope you will have a chace to enjoy some of them. I can help you spend wonderful time here.
Abashiri offers you not only natural beauty but also some interesting museums which specialize in northern minorities such as Ainu, Inuit and Eskimo. Also, there is a drift ice museum where you can touch some drift ice in the very cold room (-15 degrees Celsius) even in summer. You will have a great time visiting those small museums.
I can help you visit the places around Abashiri, where I live and go hiking in our area. There isn't frequent transportation service here and I think you need to take a taxi or rent a car. We basically begin our tours from Abashiri and return to this city. If you plan to start your tour from different cities, let me know about your plan. In that case, you might need to pay for my transportation expenses and accomodation fees. There might be some cases that I have to drive a long way ( more than 3 or 4 hours for one way) and stay at a hotel on the day before meeting you.
Since I contacted Hiroshi, he always made big effort to plan a perfect trip, with possible plan B or C if weather conditions were bad and asked about my preferences. So I can clearly say that the trip was planned for me and my taste. I knew what i had to expect, what i should prepare for and where Hiroshi could help. The weather conditions weren't perfect with wind and rain so that the day before we switched to plan B, hiking mount motoro, where the hike had better wind coverage from trees and was shorter to be able to walk back if necessary. The view was just stunning!!! Amazing, best time conditions for taking nice pictures. A bit cold and bit cloudy but we were so good prepared we didnt bother at all. At the summit we enjoyed a hot coffee with picnic lunch and had the first snow of the year, yet we still were good prepared and enjoyed it! Short time later it was a bit sunny again and even ate an ice cream at the start/end of the hike. You have to love hokkaido in autumn. On our Journey to the hike and back we did visit some nice observatorie points which was an amazing extension as we had plenty of time because of the shorter hike. At the end for me it wasnt plan B, if was an A+, huge congrats and thanks to Hiroshi. Can only recommend him!
Hi Karl Thanks for your kind words. I also had a great time walking with you. (The weather wasn't perfect for the hike, though.) We changed our original hike plan to plan B and I think we made a better choice because we could have extra time to visit another place, Lake Mashu. What a wonderful view we could see there. As I told you during our hike, there are many exciting places to visit around Abashiri. I'm looking forward to seeing you here again and having another hike to enjoy breathtaking views. Please let me know any time if you want to get more information about Okhotsk area. Thanks again for contacting me, Karl. Hiroshi
Hiroshi is the nicest, most knowledgeable guide we've ever had. We are a couple travelling through the Shiretoko area and as we didn't drive, our request were out of the ordinary. As well as needing a guide through the national park, we also needed transportation included. Hiroshi was very accommodating in our needs. He went above and beyond for us, had coffee and homemade bread prepared which we are so touched by. The day was perfect and we are so glad we had met him and had him as our guide. We hope to meet him again one day.
Hi Melissa & Joe Thanks a lot for your kind words, Melissa. I also had a great time with you two. It's a bit too warm for a nature tour, but we're lucky to see so many Hokkaido deer while walking and driving. Please come to Hokkaido again and enjoy its natural beauty. Hokkaido gives us gorgeous views and natural habitats for many wild animals and birds. I believe it is a paradise for you, especially for Joe. Let's have another Origami folding paper time together!! Many thanks, Hiroshi
Hiroshi is a fantastic local Abashiri guide born, raised and living in the remote Shiretoko region of Hoddaiko. The unseasonal melting of snow meant our original plans to include snow-shoeing had to be changed, with Hiroshi re-arranging our day brilliantly to include Lake Tofutsu, Mt Mokoto observatory, the Museum of the Northern Peoples, and Cape Notoro. Hiroshi came prepared with home-made bread, coffee and tea, and binoculars for our bird-watching successes that included a family group of Japanese Cranes, Stellar Sea-Eagles and white-tailed eagles. Hiroshi made our day a fantastic experience. Highly recommended!
Hello Tony and Veronica, Thanks for your mail and good review. I haven't been doing guide jobs lately due to the covid-19, so I'm sure I'm a little rusty. Sorry about asking you again several times. As for our snowshoe walk, we didn't have any luck, but we were very lucky to be able to see gorgeous eagles and cranes. And I was really happy to know Mt.Mokoto observatory was a great success! Please come again, Tony and Veronica. I'll be very happy to have you here in Abashiri any time of the year. Feel free to ask me for more information about this area in the future. Many thanks, Hiroshi
Our group from Seattle Washington spent two days with Hiroshi in Eastern Hokkaido - one day touring the Abashiri area and the second hiking in Lake Akan. We had a great experience with him and highly recommend him. In planning the trip, Hiroshi was a pleasure to work with. We were interested in hiking and seeing some of the natural wonders of Eastern Hokkaido. He answered all our e-mails promptly with excellent ideas and information, and was very flexible in developing a trip that met the needs of our schedule and group interests. On our arrival to Japan, Hiroshi went out of his way to make two trips to the airport as some of our group was delayed. Upon meeting him, we bonded quickly. His written and spoken English is excellent - not surprising as he is a former English teacher. He is a charming, funny and delightful individual, a Hokkaido native full of local knowledge and lots of energy. He had prepared extensively for our trip, coming with maps, brochures, and a wide range of specific ideas. He drove us for two days in a rental car, including in some challenging weather conditions. He is an experienced and cautious driver who made us feel very comfortable. On our hike to Meakandake at Lake Akan, he arrived fully prepared with extra gear, maps, even fresh home made bread and hot coffee for the trail! He was very careful to track our progress and mindful of how the group was doing at all times as the weather and conditions changed during the hike. Even after our tour with him and during the rest of our time in Hokkaido, he stayed in touch frequently, providing additional ideas as to where to go, including many excellent spots that were not found in local guides. Overall, our experience with Hiroshi was great and I would recommend him without reservation.
Hi Sandy Thank you so much for your message. I had a GREAT time spending two days with you, too. It was also a hppy and pleasure time for me. Unfortunately, we didn't have the best weatherfor the hike at Mt.Meakan but as I told you during our hike, that was a kind of the notice that we should hike again. So I'd like you all to come again to Mt. Meakandake to enjoy its spectacular views in the near future !! I was really glad to know you had a good luck to be able to see beautiful views of Lake Mashu, a small pond called 'Kaminoko-ike',or God's Child Pond in English and rare birds including cranes during the rest of your tour. Please let me know anytime when you need some information about eaastern Hokkaido. I'm looking forward to hearing from you !! Thanks again for your kind words and say hi to David and Cezanne for me. Hiroshi