Hokkaido Wildlife–Adventure Tours

Immerse yourself in Hokkaido’s diverse wildlife
A whale's tail disappears beneath the water seen on a whale watching cruise off the Rausu coast, Shiretoko

Hokkaido, separated from mainland Japan by the Tsugaru Strait, is home to wildlife not found anywhere else in the country. The mountains, skies, marshlands and oceans are home to creatures great– like Brown Bears, Steller’s Sea Eagles and Orcas– and small– like Long-Tailed Tits, Siberian Flying Squirrels and the Northern Pika. The best part is that regardless of the season, there is always a high chance of seeing some of Hokkaido’s incredible wildlife on our tours. Grab your binoculars and join us for a wildlife adventure here in Hokkaido!   

Our Hokkaido Wildlife–Adventure Tours

Why Adventure in the World of Hokkaido’s Wildlife?

Unique & Diverse Species 

Once connected to the Sakhalin Peninsula, Hokkaido is today separated from mainland Japan by the Tsugaru Strait, also known as Blakiston’s Line. This is a unique point in the world where the local ecosystem shifts from Asian species to Eurasian. As such, Hokkaido is home to a number of flora and fauna that can only be found here in the whole of Japan! Its location just south of Siberia also makes it a migratory spot for many birds and aquatic mammals.

A Spiritual Connection

Eastern Hokkaido is a region that remains an important residential and spiritual ground for the indigenous Ainu. Many have set up shops, restaurants and workshops in the area to introduce Japanese to their way of life. The Ainu have a deep connection to the wildlife in Hokkaido, believing them to be gods and guardians. The large Brown Bear, for example, is deeply respected and revered by the Ainu as a god of the mountains. The Orca is thought of as the guardian of the oceans, and the Blakiston’s Fish Owl is the protector of Ainu villages. Seeing these animals up close and in their natural habitats will imbue you with the same sense of awe and respect that the Ainu have for them and will give you a deeper connection with this land.

The Great Outdoors

The abundance of wildlife here in Eastern Hokkaido makes it quite easy to spot. In fact, you are very likely to see more deer than people on a visit! However, it’s one thing to see animals from afar and quite another to see them at close-quarters engaging in natural behaviours. This is only possibly by journeying off the beaten path, straight into their habitat. On our tours, you’ll not only watch the wildlife but you’ll also have the chance to hike, canoe and walk through their world and see them in situations and areas that most tourists may not.

A whale's tail disappears beneath the water seen on a whale watching cruise off the Rausu coast, Shiretoko