Hokkaido is famous for a few things. Hokkaido is the bread basket of Japan with farms covering much of this northernmost island in the archipelago. So Hokkaido beef and dairy are all famous products. Hokkaido is also well known for its cold and snowy winters. However, Hokkaido is also famous for its beautiful fields in the summer. In Furano, the area is famous for its colourful lavender fields that cover several farms’ fields. These lavender fields are also partly the reason we chose to spend a month in Sapporo. We were only a one-day trip away from the beautiful fields of purple.
Fortunately, Hokkaido Japanese Language School (JaLS), also had a one-day trip as part of their Summer Program. For about ¥6000 a person, it was a good deal for a one-day trip. We all loaded onto a chartered tour bus near Odori Station early on a Saturday morning and made the 2-3 hour ride to Furano.
When we finally got close to our first stop, the bus got snarled in really bad single lane traffic. It looks like everyone else in Hokkaido had decided to visit Furano on this fine Saturday in July. The line stretched for quite a few blocks as all the cars tried to make their way to the most famous of the Furano farms – Farm Tomita.
The teachers decided it was quicker for us to just hop off the bus and walk to the farm from this point. We still couldn’t see the farm from where we got off the bus. It must have been an 8 minute walk or so. Farm Tomita is definitely the most famous and popular of the farms in Furano.
Farm Tomita did not disappoint. It’s nestled in a valley that is home to many farms. Farm Tomita is large and expansive. I don’t think we had enough time to cover the whole farm and its different fields, but we got to the main attraction – the lavender. Interspersed amongst the lavender were other flowers. The fields were vibrant and stunning. No wonder everybody came out this day to see the fields.
Farm Tomita didn’t only have the flowers to gaze upon. There was plenty of food and goodies to purchase. There was a souvenir shop selling all things related to lavender. There was soap, shampoos, cushions, and more – all infused with lavender. One of the special food items being sold was ice cream flavoured with, what else, lavender. There were also lots of Hokkaido melon and milk on sale throughout the farm. (The milk amazingly was not lavender flavoured).
We only spent a couple of hours wandering the fields, but it was well worth the trip out here. It was stunning and beautiful to see the lavender and other flowers up close. It was busy at Farm Tomita, but not so crowded that you couldn’t enjoy the vast expanse covered with colourful flora. We gathered back up in the parking lot where our coach was there waiting for us. We were quickly off to the next stop on our Furano field trip.