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JR Hakodate Line - From Kutchan to Hokdate

singapore
5 posts
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JR Hakodate Line - From Kutchan to Hokdate

Need advice on the train journey from Kutchan to Hakodate.

The train schedule is as such:

9.28 Leave Kutchan via JR Hakodate Line

11.13 arrive Oshamambe

11:30 Leave Oshamambe via LTD.EXP HOKUTO 8

12:49 arrive HAKODATE

My concern - is 17 mins sufficient time to transfer from JR Hakodate Line to Ltd Exp Hokuto 8, with luggage in tow?

Are the trains on the same platform? Or do we have to exit and rush to another platform?

where do we purchase the different train tickets? Do we need to purchase in advance? Should we buy the reserved seats tickets?

BTW, is Kutchan station a 15 mins bus ride from Hirafu Village?

Thanks for advice!

May

Sapporo, Japan
Destination Expert
for Sapporo, Hokkaido
Level Contributor
2,507 posts
78 reviews
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1. Re: JR Hakodate Line - From Kutchan to Hokdate

Hi

Yes - its easy to do the transfer...I think it is the same platform. It's a small station...4 platforms maybe?

Kutchan is the small town near Hirafu - it takes about 15 minutse to the station...but worth checking too to see if the train stops at Hirafu or Niseko station - these are closer and much small er stations...

No - you dont need to buy extra tickets - unless it is a holiday/weekend time and then you might, because most passengers have got on in Sapporo .

amanda

singapore
5 posts
1 review
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2. Re: JR Hakodate Line - From Kutchan to Hokdate

Thanks Amanda, for your quick response!

Yes, the train stops at Niseko and Hirafu stations too.

I have the impression (read somewhere) that Kutchan station is nearest (by bus/car) to Hirafu Village (will be staying at The Vale) as compared to Niseko and Hirafu Village. Please advice.

btw, mind if I run thru my itinerary with you?

I will be travelling with a goup of 11 (5 adults and 4 kids) this coming Dec.

I am still undecided as to which itinerary will be fitting to our group (to interest both the kids & adults, plus 1 elderly but fit 72 year old grand-dad)?

day 1 - Chitose airport to Sapporo, stay a night

day 2 - proceed to Noboribetsu, do onsen, stay night

day 3 - visit Hell Valley and Norosibetsu Date Jidai Mura (is it worth visiting?), stay another night

OR

Day 1 to day 3 - Sapporo, stay 3 nights, in between do day trips to Otaru and Asahiyama Zoo (or any other suggestions?)

day 4 - depart for Niseko via Chitose via bus

day 5 to day 8 - skiing & other snow activities at niseko (stay 5 nights)

day 9 - depart for Hakodate via train, stay night

day 10 - leisure tour in Hakodate via tram, food hunt, stay another night

(is nearby Onuma quasi-national park worth visiting during Winter?)

day 11 - depart for Tokyo via Hakodate airport

again, thanks for advice!

May

Sapporo, Japan
Destination Expert
for Sapporo, Hokkaido
Level Contributor
2,507 posts
78 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: JR Hakodate Line - From Kutchan to Hokdate

Hi May

11 people?? wow! you are feeling like a tour agent.

Re Kutchan Station - It will really depend on where The Vale offers to drive you to in their shuttle bus - because 11 people with luggage will be quite a move. Also you are more likely to get 11 seats together if you get on at Kutchan Station. The stations are all very near 20 minutes vs 10 minutes....

The rest of the itinary looks good to me.

Sapporo Stay vs Noboribetsu Stay?

Well.....Sapporo is a better location as a base for a 3 days stay because there is more to do there and you can access other places like Otaru and Asahikawa easily.

Noboribetsu is a village with lots of big hotels - no shops - there is a volcanic area to walk around and then taxi or bus ides to the JEdo Jidai theme park ( which is lots of fun for family and kids) and a big aquarium and an Ainu cultural village.....

It depends how much you really like onsen - because that is the reason to be in Noboribetu.

Hope that helps

amanda

Sapporo, Japan
Destination Expert
for Sapporo, Hokkaido
Level Contributor
2,507 posts
78 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: JR Hakodate Line - From Kutchan to Hokdate

Hi May

11 people?? wow! you are feeling like a tour agent.

Re Kutchan Station - It will really depend on where The Vale offers to drive you to in their shuttle bus - because 11 people with luggage will be quite a move. Also you are more likely to get 11 seats together if you get on at Kutchan Station. The stations are all very near 20 minutes vs 10 minutes....

The rest of the itinary looks good to me.

Sapporo Stay vs Noboribetsu Stay?

Well.....Sapporo is a better location as a base for a 3 days stay because there is more to do there and you can access other places like Otaru and Asahikawa easily.

Noboribetsu is a village with lots of big hotels - no shops - there is a volcanic area to walk around and then taxi or bus ides to the JEdo Jidai theme park ( which is lots of fun for family and kids) and a big aquarium and an Ainu cultural village.....

It depends how much you really like onsen - because that is the reason to be in Noboribetu.

Hope that helps

amanda

Sapporo, Japan
Destination Expert
for Sapporo, Hokkaido
Level Contributor
2,507 posts
78 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: JR Hakodate Line - From Kutchan to Hokdate

Hi May

11 people?? wow! you are feeling like a tour agent.

Re Kutchan Station - It will really depend on where The Vale offers to drive you to in their shuttle bus - because 11 people with luggage will be quite a move. Also you are more likely to get 11 seats together if you get on at Kutchan Station. The stations are all very near 20 minutes vs 10 minutes....

The rest of the itinary looks good to me.

Sapporo Stay vs Noboribetsu Stay?

Well.....Sapporo is a better location as a base for a 3 days stay because there is more to do there and you can access other places like Otaru and Asahikawa easily.

Noboribetsu is a village with lots of big hotels - no shops - there is a volcanic area to walk around and then taxi or bus ides to the JEdo Jidai theme park ( which is lots of fun for family and kids) and a big aquarium and an Ainu cultural village.....

It depends how much you really like onsen - because that is the reason to be in Noboribetu.

Hope that helps

amanda

singapore
5 posts
1 review
Save Reply
6. Re: JR Hakodate Line - From Kutchan to Hokdate

Thanks Amanda for your advice again!

Doing the research and planning did give me headache. And i keep changing my mind as I discover new things.

Having valuable advice from experts like you does help a lot.

Our group are divided over Osen, hence osen is not a must do.

The adults are into cuisine (Hakkaido delicious & fresh seafood) & sightseeing, but the kids just want to have fun (activities to keep them sane).

It's funny but the reason why we are thinking of going to Noboribetsu is the Noboribetsu Date Jidai Mura. The osen is just a bonus.

A question:

which is better - Noboribetsu Date Jidai Mura or Asahiyama Zoo?

If we choose the former, then we will have to forgo Otaru and the Zoo

thanks!

May

7. Re: JR Hakodate Line - From Kutchan to Hokdate

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