Home
Back

The 2021 festival was cancelled due to the coronavirus.

The Asahikawa Winter Festival (旭川冬まつり, Asahikawa Fuyu Matsuri) is Hokkaido's second largest winter festival after Sapporo's Snow Festival. The festival takes place over a week in early February, about the same time as the Sapporo Snow Festival. Hence, it is possible for winter visitors to visit both festivals on the same trip as the two cities are only an 80 minute train ride apart from each other.

While Asahikawa may not be able to boast having Hokkaido's biggest winter festival, it certainly has one of the biggest snow sculptures. Every year one massive sculpture is made as a stage for music and other performances. The giant sculpture of a Korean fortress in 1994 even made into the book of Guinness World Records as the largest snow construction built. The giant sculpture has a different theme each year, such as a snowman castle in 2010 or the Daisetsuzan Mountains in 2011.

The giant snow sculpture is located in the riverside Asahibashi Site, one of two festival sites, that is named after nearby Asahibashi Bridge. Other attractions found at this festival site vary from year to year, but usually include several smaller snow sculptures, snow slides, snowmobile rides, horse drawn sleigh rides and an ice bar. The Asahibashi Site also serves as the location for the festival's opening and closing ceremonies, both of which usually include a fireworks show.

The festival's second site is the Heiwa Dori pedestrian street, which leads over roughly one kilometer from Asahikawa Station to the vicinity of the Asahibashi Site. About 50 ice sculptures are displayed there, to be judged in an ice sculpture competition. For the first few days of the festival the sculptors can be seen at work, after which the sculptures are left on display. The sculptures look particularly attractive during the evening when they are illuminated.

Getting there and around

The Heiwa Dori pedestrian zone leads from Asahikawa Station for about one kilometer through the center of town. From its end, it is about a 10-15 minute walk to the festival's Asahibashi Site by foot. Alternatively, there are free shuttle buses that run about every 30 minutes between Asahikawa Station and the Asahibashi Site during the festival.

How to get to and around Asahikawa

Hotels around Asahikawa

Top rated in Asahikawa
Budget:
    • 9 C Hotel Asahikawa
      Budget-friendly
      Situated in Asahikawa, 1.6 km from Ayako Miura Literature Museum, 9 C Hotel Asahikawa features air-conditioned accommodation and a bar. Among the facilities at this property are a 24-hour front desk and a shared lounge, along with free WiFi throughout the property. The property is close to popular attractions like Asahikawa Science Center, Asahikawa Taisetsu Arena and Road Station Asahikawa. At the hotel, rooms are equipped with a desk, a TV, a shared bathroom, bed linen and towels. The rooms will provide guests with a fridge. An Asian breakfast is available each morning at 9 C Hotel Asahikawa. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Tokiwa Park, Aeon Mall Asahikawa Station and Asahikawa Civic Cultural Center. The nearest airport is Asahikawa Airport, 12 km from 9 C Hotel Asahikawa.
      View on Booking.com
      9.1Booking.com
    • Mimatsuso Ryokan
      Budget-friendly
      Offering affordable Japanese-style accommodations, Mimatsuso Ryokan is a 5-minute drive on the free shuttle from JR Asahikawa Train Station. Traditional souvenirs such as origami and bookmarks are offered to guests for free. Free Wi-Fi is available. The air-conditioned rooms feature tatami (woven-straw) floors and Japanese futon bedding. Yukata robes, a TV and a trouser press are included in each. Bathrooms and toilets are shared. Guests can store food in the shared fridge and use the free-use launderette. Japanese meals are served at the shared dining room. Guests can reserve a private dining room, which has a capacity of up to 4 people. Ryokan Mimatsuso is a 10-minute walk from Tokiwa Park and a 30-minute drive from Asahiyama Zoo. Various shopping malls are within a 5-minute walk from the Ryokan.
      View on Booking.com
      9.1Booking.com
    • JR Inn Asahikawa
      Mid-range
      Open from March 2015, JR Inn Asahikawa offers simple accommodation directly connected to JR Asahikawa Station. A public bath and laundry facilities are available on site. Free WiFi is provided throughout the property. Featuring a minimalistic design, all rooms are fitted with original pillows and a flat-screen TV. Shower facilities are provided in all rooms, while only some rooms come with a bathtub. Asahikawa JR Inn is a 35-minute drive or airport limousine ride from Asahikawa Airport. Asahiyama Zoo is a 30-minute drive away. There is an Aeon shopping centre adjacent to the hotel. The hotel offers various facilities and services including free luggage storage. Parking is available on site for a fee. A buffet breakfast is available at the on-site restaurant.
      View on Booking.com
      8.9Booking.com
    • Asahikawa Ride
      Budget-friendly
      Featuring free WiFi and a shared lounge, Asahikawa Ride offers accommodation in Asahikawa, 10 km from Asahiyama Zoo and 600 metres from Tokiwa Park. Around 600 metres from Asahikawa Museum of Art, the property is also close to Asahikawa Science Center. Local points of interest like Kaguraoka Park and Ayako Miura Literature Museum are reachable within 2.3 km and 2.3 km, respectively. All rooms in the guest house are fitted with kitchenette with a kettle, microwave and toaster. Each bed in the dormitory rooms has a reading light and socket. A safety deposit box is provided for each guest. There are storage facilities including ski and snowboard equipment. Guests at Asahikawa Ride will be able to enjoy activities in and around Asahikawa, like skiing, cycling and mountain climbing. The guest house staff can assist guests with local information and tourist destinations. Sutaruhin Stadium is 2.1 km from the accommodation. The nearest airport is Asahikawa Airport, 13 km from Asahikawa Ride.
      View on Booking.com
      8.9Booking.com
    • Hotel Route Inn Grand Asahikawa Ekimae
      Mid-range
      Just a 3-minute walk from Asahikawa Station, Hotel Route Inn Grand Asahikawa Ekimae offers accommodation with private parking on site. Free WiFi is available throughout the property. Decorated in natural earth tones, all carpeted rooms feature air conditioning, heating and a flat-screen TV with satellite channels. An air purifier/humidifier, electric kettle, hairdryer and refrigerator are provided. The private bathroom comes with a bath, shower, free toiletries and high-tech toilet. Guests can unwind in the public bath on the 17th floor that boasts a city view. Free ironing services are available at the 24-hour front desk. The property offers a drinks vending machine and coin-operated washing machine. Meeting facilities, fax and photocopying services can be arranged for an additional fee. A Japanese and Western-style buffet breakfast including freshly baked bread is provided at the on-site restaurant La Mer. There is a coffee shop and convenience store on the ground floor. Ayako Miura Literature Museum and Asahikawa Museum of Art are 10 minutes by car from the property. Hotel Route Inn Grand Asahikawa Ekimae is a 35-minute drive away from Asahiyama Zoo and Asahikawa Airport.
      View on Booking.com
      8.7Booking.com
    • Y's Hotel Asahikawa Ekimae
      Mid-range
      Featuring 3-star accommodation, Y's Hotel Asahikawa Ekimae is located in Asahikawa, 2.1 km from Kaguraoka Park and 1.2 km from Asahikawa Civic Cultural Center. Among the facilities of this property are a restaurant, a 24-hour front desk and luggage storage space, along with free WiFi throughout the property. Private parking can be arranged at an extra charge. The hotel will provide guests with air-conditioned rooms offering a desk, a kettle, a fridge, a safety deposit box, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom with a bidet. At Y's Hotel Asahikawa Ekimae every room comes with bed linen and towels. Guests at the accommodation can enjoy a buffet breakfast. Y's Hotel Asahikawa Ekimae offers 3-star accommodation with a sauna. Popular points of interest near the hotel include Ayako Miura Literature Museum, Tokiwa Park and Aeon Mall Asahikawa Station. The nearest airport is Asahikawa Airport, 12 km from Y's Hotel Asahikawa Ekimae.
      View on Booking.com
      8.7Booking.com
    • Hotel WBF Grande Asahikawa
      Mid-range
      Set in Asahikawa, 1.5 km from Ayako Miura Literature Museum, Hotel WBF Grande Asahikawa offers air-conditioned accommodation and a spa and wellness centre. Boasting a 24-hour front desk, this property also provides guests with a restaurant. The hotel has family rooms. At the hotel, all rooms are fitted with a desk, a flat-screen TV, a private bathroom, bed linen and towels. All guest rooms will provide guests with a fridge. Guests at Hotel WBF Grande Asahikawa can enjoy a buffet or an Asian breakfast. At the accommodation guests are welcome to take advantage of a hot spring bath and a sauna. Popular points of interest near Hotel WBF Grande Asahikawa include Kaguraoka Park, Tokiwa Park and Aeon Mall Asahikawa Station. The nearest airport is Asahikawa Airport, 12 km from the hotel.
      View on Booking.com
      8.6Booking.com
    • Dormy Inn Asahikawa
      Mid-range
      Dormy Inn Asahikawa is a 10-minute walk from JR Asahikawa Train Station. It offers modern accommodation with a large public hot-spring bath and free in-room wired internet. Guestrooms offer both air conditioning and heating facilities. Each room is equipped with a fridge, an electric kettle with green tea, and a flat-screen TV with satellite channels. A humidifier and a trouser press are also provided. Guests can enjoy a relaxing bath at the natural hot spring bath located on the hotel’s top floor. Sauna facilities are also available. Other facilities include a coin-operated laundrette. Complimentary Japanese Yonaki (Ramen) noodles are available from 21:30-23:00 on a first-come, first-served basis. Hot coffee is also served from 15:00-23:00 to guests arriving to the property. Asahikawa Dormy Inn is a 40-minute drive from Asahiyama Zoo and about a 10-minute drive to Kamikawa Shrine.
      View on Booking.com
      8.2Booking.com
    • Court Hotel Asahikawa
      Mid-range
      Located just a 2-minute walk from JR Asahikawa Train Station, Court Hotel Asahikawa offers free WiFi in all areas. There are many shopping and dining options nearby the hotel. The air-conditioned rooms feature a fridge and a flat-screen TV with satellite channels. The en suite bathroom comes with a hairdryer and free toiletries. Some rooms are fitted with tatami (woven-straw) flooring and traditional futon bedding. Court Hotel Asahikawa offers massage and laundry services at an additional charge. Asahikawa Museum of Art is a 20-minute walk away and the popular Asahiyama Zoo is a 30-minute drive away from the hotel.
      View on Booking.com
      8.1Booking.com
    • Asahikawa Sun Hotel
      Mid-range
      A 6-minute walk from JR Asahikawa Train Station, Sun Hotel has massage services and a Japanese/Western restaurant. Free WiFi, high-speed wired internet access, a private bathroom and an LCD TV are provided in all rooms. The air-conditioned rooms at Asahikawa Sun Hotel are modern and simply furnished with a desk, a trouser press and a mini-fridge. Instant coffee, green tea bags and slippers are provided. Asahiyama Zoo is a 30-minute drive away, and Nagayama Shrine is about a 30-minute train trip from the hotel. A coin launderette and a free-use microwave are on site, and vending machines offer beer and soft drinks. The 24-hour reception can keep luggage and store valuables for guests. Restaurant Jurin serves a set-menu Western or Japanese breakfast for a fee, and is also open for dinner. Breakfast must be ordered at least 1 day in advance.
      View on Booking.com
      8.1Booking.com