Niseko Japan Rail Hokkaido

Although there are no direct rail connections from Chitose International airport to the Niseko area, it is possible to take the train from the airport to Sapporo, and then from Sapporo to Niseko station or Kutchan station. Both of these stations are located a fair distance from the resort though, so you’ll still need to arrange taxi, bus, or pickup service from your hotel. Japan Rail Hokkaido, commonly known as JR Hokkaido, is an excellent rail service with world class quality and reasonable prices. That said, the rail service to Niseko is really not all that well developed just yet, and slowly swaying along on a local track in a cramped seat on a crowded train can get tiresome quite fast. However, if you prepare yourself for a long run and settle in with some snacks and a good book, the run from Sapporo to Kutchan is especially scenic, and you might even get a few good photos along the way. Be forewarned that you should arrive early in order to actually get a seat, otherwise you could wind up standing the whole journey. A special bonus, albeit one only available between the middle of September through the first weekend of November, is a very well preserved steam locomotive called the Niseko SL that has been put back into operation for tourists. The train runs on weekends only from Sapporo through Otaru via Kutchan and Niseko before stopping in Rankoshi and running in reverse back to Sapporo. Tickets are by reservation only and sell out quick though, so get yours well in advance.


80 Chuodori Niseko, Abuta District, Hokkaido Prefecture 048-1512

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