If you guys think that the previous post was a lengthy one, you guys would want to grab a chair for this one. Continuing on from my story, our next destination was the beautiful resort of Niseko Village and the winter town of Sapporo!
[Greeting the morning in Hokkaido with my daily jog and walk!]
After spending the night in Noboribetsu, we head out to our other destination which is a famous ski resort in Hokkaido. Apparently Malaysian owned (YTL Corp) it was said that they have one of the best snow there so its a must to visit. I guess I should explain that with the tour, we were changing hotels everyday so that we would enjoy as many places as we can during the trip itself.
[Iconic devil statute of Noboribetsu!]
[Our ride up the mountain]
Our first destination was to visit a volcanic lake which can be seen on top of Mount Usu, which was said to be one of the magnificent view point of the entire valley. Of course to get up there was a 10 minute cable car journey but boy when we got there, it was worth it. Clear blue sky with snow as far as the eye can see, and even an excellent view of the lake itself.
Of course me being myself again, I took the opportunity to annoy my mom even further by trying to take dangerous shots and went nuts destroying everything I can see!
[MOUNTAIN TOP JUMPSHOT!]
[DECAPITATE ALL SNOWMEN!]
[DESTROY ALL SNOWFIELDS!]
ok the last one hurt like hell coz I landed on hard snow. Mom laughed like hell.
Regardless, the other thing that the place is also famous for is their Hokkaido Bears facility which houses a large number of really really large Hokkaido brown bears. Said to be really brutal and ferocious...
[Our tour group photo at the bottom of the mountain]
Surprisingly when we got there, the bears were not even that scary at all. Once we got there, the bears would actually get on their feet, wave at you one time and start begging for food to be thrown at them. They even catch them apples with their mouths! :D
[Hokkaido bear in action!]
[This curious fella starting sniffing the feeding pipe when I got closer]
[Even got a picture of a bunch of fatty raccoons!]
The time when we were done with the sanctuary was just after 11 am but the temperature was dropping rapidly which was actually the best time to get ourselves to the resort. We got some quick lunch and quickly headed for the resort.
From the mountain it was just under an hour to reach the place and what we saw was simply amazing! Snow as thick as all the way above my knees with a ski and snowboard slope to die for. Of course I didn't opt for that option on the simple basis that my previous experience in Australia has been an excruciating one...
I'll be quiet for a bit to let you guys enjoy the snow pics!
[Checking out our ski equipment]
[While SafrizOnline opted for the professional pose...]
[...I opted for a more blogger worthy pose!]
[Dad still posed #likeaboss despite his feet are stuck in snow!]
[called truce with mum and took a proper picture]
[SafrizOnline decided to help by being completely useless in my snowman project]
[We tried to get him to work by pelting him with snowballs. That didn't work]
[Halfway through our project. We decided to name it "Ramon". You'll see why...]
After we were done with the snow, all of a sudden there was another blizzard coming our way. That was when we were given another treat with the snow! Apparently in Hokkaido, there are places where you can actually drive you very own snow bike at full speed while blazing through the fields in a snow storm You tell me how was I going to pass that kind of option?
[Couldn't help myself doing a rempit shot with the bikes]
[Halfway through while blazing through the storm!]
[My lips almost got frozen because of the strong cold wind + speed of the bike!]
[Taking a break]
[SafrizOnline's planking lvl -20 degrees!]
BY the time we were done we decided to head back to the hotel for some rest after a long hard day playing in the snow. At that time the snow storm outside was getting pretty intense and we were looking at almost everything being covered in snow. Of course in my mind I was wondering whether Ramon the Snowman actually survived the storm.
Then came the big finale of the night
Normally in Japan, after a long day in the snow people would retreat to one of the hot spring public bath (onsen) to warm yourself up as well as it being really healthy for the body, because of the natural minerals that come into the water from the soil. Here's the problem.
1. You are not allowed to wear ANYTHING while at the bath (and I really mean completely nude)
2. There is a stockpile load of people there in the bath itself!
So us being shy Malaysians, I was wondering how the hell was I going to get this done. I got myself into my Yukata (traditional Japanese bath robe and hovered around the front door of the bath for about 45 minutes wondering whether I should go in. I even went to Twitter asking people's opinion (to with the lovely BonjourGlow was pushing me to get naked and go in) and was even tempted to ask our Japanese expert blogger Cheesie for advice online (although I opted not to with fear of sounding uber creepy...).
Then I thought to myself, most of the people there are either old uncles who don't really give two nuts (excuse the expression) about nudity or fat guys who are concerned about their looks as well, whereas I look like, well, me. Why should I be scared?
So, gung-ho in mind, I jumped in.
[You put your robes and towels here]
[We agreed to go in separately. Way too creepy to go in together...]
[This is where we wash up before/after getting into the pool]
Once I was in, it wasn't long before I got over the awkward phase and just enjoyed the pool. They had about 7 different kinds of pool in there, each with different temperature and functions. From jacuzzis to waterfall and even a slide straight into the pool!
One of the most awesome thing you can do is after a long soak, get your naked self outside in the snow where they have an OUTDOOR POOL waiting for you! The feeling is crazy, when you get the cold gushing on you and then immediately jumping into a hot spring pool while snow is dropping on your head. Imagine that!
[Sneaky awesome view from the pool outside in the snow!]
All in all it was really an eventful day out in the Niseko Village. 5 star services with a lot of snow activities that you can do while you are down there. Of course the next day my wonder is whether the snowman survived the night with the huge snow storm that hit the area through out the night.
[Ramon survived the night!]
We named him Ramon over the ever famous Japanese character....
[RAZOR RAMON SUMITANI!]
To check out the post before from Noboribetsu, CLICK HERE
To check out the post before from Noboribetsu, CLICK HERE