I wanted to go to Furano to see the flowers, but with advice from the friendly Tourist Information staff at JR Sapporo Station, they told me to get off at Naka-Furano instead. It is just one stop before Furano itself, but is nearer to Farm Tomita. What I failed to ask was about the train ticket, so I happily hopped on the Limited Express Train service bound for Furano via Asahikawa.
Tip: Limited Express trains require a special price ticket, which should be bought at the ticket machine outside the station, failing which, like my example, you pay for the tickets on the train itself from the Ticket Inspector. I highly suggest you pay via the machines then with the Inspector; it is less heart-stopping and worrying, and definitely less lost-in-translation. Also, do note that there are non-reserved and reserved seats. Of course, you pay more for the reserved seats. If I’m not mistaken, non-reserved and partial non-reserved seats are on carriages 1 and 2.
So, the damage for the return tickets, 7220¥. I think that’s pretty steep for transport. Then again, as already experienced, transportation in Japan is not cheap.
The journey from Sapporo to Naka-Furano took nearly 3 hours. But it is really far, like in the middle of the entire island. Have to change train at Asahikawa Station. The train ending at Furano is a little 1-carriage thing, so, if you’re late, too bad on not getting a seat.
Furano and Biei are really lovely places in Hokkaido. They are special for growing and producing Lavender and their products, and also flowers. Since this is now only early-mid June, Lavender plants are just beginning to bloom. However, as you will see in the photos, other plants are already out, and it’s really picturesque to see rows of colourful flowers. Farm Tomita is one of these places and it is free to enter.
Enough said. Photos!
Farm Tomita is located about 3km (est 25-30mins walk). Cross the sheltered bridge (花人橋）at Naka-Furano Station, cross the road directly behind the station, up a bit of hill towards a temple, then head right of the temple and down the road. Follow the signs. Can’t miss them.
Enjoy some flowers, wild and cultured, along the way.
Farm Tomita map
Lavender ice cream!