How to get to Shiretoko National Park
Shiretoko National Park is located in the far east of Hokkaido. A visit can be combined with nearby Akan National Park. A rental car is the recommended means of getting around since public transportation is rather infrequent.
By air and bus
The closest domestic airport to Shiretoko National Park is Memanbetsu Airport with direct flights from/to Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya and Sapporo, operated by JAL, ANA and Air Do. The airport is about 100 kilometers west of the national park.
There are a small number of direct buses between the airport and Utoro from mid June to mid October and during the drift ice season from late January to mid March. The one way ride takes about two hours and costs 3300 yen.
By train and bus
The closest railway station to the national park is JR Shiretoko Shari Station in the center of Shari Town, about 40 kilometers southwest of the national park. Shiretoko Shari Station can be reached in 40 minutes from Abashiri (840 yen one way) or in about 2.5 hours from Kushiro (2810 yen one way) by infrequently operating trains. The approach from Sapporo via Abashiri takes about 6-7 hours and costs around 11,000 yen.
Shiretoko Shari Station is connected with Utoro by infrequent buses (60 minutes, 1650 yen one way), some of which continue from Utoro via the Shiretoko Nature Center to the Shiretoko Five Lakes) from late April through October.
Convenient rental car outlets in the proximity of Shiretoko National Park can be found at Memanbetsu Airport (about 100 kilometers west of the park), in Abashiri (about 80 kilometers west of the park) and in Kushiro (about 160 kilometers south of the park). From Sapporo, the national park is about 450 kilometers or a 6-7 hour drive via Asahikawa, Sounkyo, Kitami and Bihoro.
Above fees and schedules are subject to change. For the current yen exchange rate, click here.
Most of the easily accessible attractions of Shiretoko National Park are found along the western coast of the peninsula, making Utoro a good base for exploring the national park. Because getting around by public transportation is rather inconvenient, a rental car is the recommended means of transportation.
Bus service is rather infrequent, especially in winter. Year around, there are buses between Shiretoko Shari Station and Utoro. In summer, infrequent buses connect Utoro with the Shiretoko Five Lakes and with Rausu via Shiretoko Pass. During the peak of the summer, the unpaved access road to the Kamuiwakkayu Falls gets closed to private traffic, and shuttle buses operate instead.
The Shiretoko Peninsula receives a lot of snow during winter, and many of the national park's roads get closed from around late November to around late April, including the road over Shiretoko Pass and to the Shiretoko Five Lakes and the Kamuiwakkayu Falls.