YOU ARE READING THE CULTURED TRAVELLER - DECEMBER 2019-FEBRUARY 2020 ISSUE 28

SAPPORO SNOW FESTIVAL

NewsFlash

SAPPORO SNOW FESTIVAL

Japan

31 January–11 February 2020

snowfes.com

Now one of Japan’s most popular winter events, the first Sapporo Snow Festival was held in 1950, featuring just six snow statues built in Odori Park by local high school students. Since then, the event has snowballed into a winter wonderland which attracts more than two million people from around the world to the capital of the mountainous northern Japanese island of Hokkaido, a popular ski spot also known for its beer. The annual festival, known as Yuki Matsuri locally, is centred on Odori Park in downtown Sapporo, where giant sculptures of snow and ice are erected alongside a 1.5km trail that is illuminated at night. There are two other sites: Tsudome, a community dome with large snow slides and a tobogganing zone – where the festival starts a few days earlier on 31st January – and Susukino Ice World which provides an opportunity to touch and ride some of the sculptures.