Sapporo is the capital city of Hokkaido Prefecture and a major tourist destination. As it's home to a huge snow festival and with great access to the rest of Japan's northernmost island, many visitors will travel from Tokyo to Hokkaido.
So, what is the best way to get from Tokyo to Hokkaido? Though the two areas are around 820km apart, Tokyo and Sapporo are actually well connected to each other. Whether you favor speed, budget, the route and its sights, or even a specific vehicle, we've got you covered.

1. Flights from Tokyo to Hokkaido (Sapporo)

The fastest way to get from Tokyo to Hokkaido is by airplane to Sapporo. Every day about 80 flights travel from the airports of Haneda and Narita to the New Chitose Airport, in a trip that takes about 1 hour and a half.
The ticket usually goes for 20,000-30,000 yen, but it’s possible to find cheaper options with earlier reservations or with less strict travel days/times.

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You can conveniently travel from New Chitose Airport to Sapporo by bus

To access the JR train network you won’t need to leave the airport, which has convenient access to the trains. The “Airport Express” is a train that arrives at Sapporo Station in 33 minutes (available since March 14, 2020), departing at a frequency of 5/hour during the day, so you won’t need to wait long.
Since many commuters use it, if you want to secure a seat, you can wait for one of the following trains, or reserve ahead (for an additional fee).

The bus, instead, takes about 50 minutes from the airport to central Sapporo, it can store large suitcases, and every passenger has a seat. If you are staying in the areas of Odori or Susukino, or in areas not far from the center of the city, the bus will probably conveniently stop nearby.

2. Shinkansen from Tokyo to Hokkaido

If you enjoy also the time spent traveling, try the JR. It will take longer, but you will be able to also enjoy the beautiful Japanese landscapes, the skylines of the various cities, and the flavors and colors of the season during which you are visiting.
If you use the Hokkaido Shinkansen, which opened in 2016, you will arrive at Sapporo Station in about 4 and a half hours, when traveling from Tokyo Station to Shin-Hakodate Hokuto Station, and a further 3 and a half hours by express train from there.
The price ranges around 15,000 yen, not including seat reservation, but your Japan Rail Pass may cover it. In total, it will take approximately 8 hours from Tokyo Station to Sapporo Station.

From the Shinkansen windows, you can enjoy the scenery changing from the heavily metropolitan of Tokyo, to the nature-rich ones of Tohoku. One of …

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