The word Hokkaido often conjures up images of a cold wintry climate in the minds of many but just what type of temperatures can visitors to Hokkaido expect? This is a question that many thinking about a trip to Hokkaido will be wondering, so let us give you the lowdown on exactly what to expect and the type of clothing and belongings to bring with you.
Summer temperatures in Hokkaido
Average temperatures in the summer range from 20 - 25°C which means that the climate is very comfortable when compared to the extreme humidity of Japan's main island. In this way, Hokkaido in the summer is perfect for such activities as afternoon strolls or driving down the road in a rental car with the window open as you enjoy the fresh breeze.
Day time temperatures provide the perfect conditions for walking around in short sleeves and half pants but in the evening it is advisable to wear a parker or light top as the temperature can drop somewhat. In the evening before retiring to bed, long sleeved pajamas and bottoms are recommended as the evening and mornings can be a little chilly. Important to note is that the farther east or north of Hokkaido one travels, the more this drop in temperature becomes apparent.
Temperatures in the summer in Sapporo and Asahikawa are some of the mildest in Hokkaido which are quite a contrast to the climate in the winter which is known for its heavy snow and bitter cold winds. Day time temperatures range from 25°C to 30°C, which means that you don't need to worry about bringing a jacket with you while out and about during the day. However UV rays can be quite strong so bringing a bottle of sun screen with you may be a good idea. Also, if you decide to venture into Hokkaido's forests we recommend wearing long sleeves and to bring some insect repellent as well.
Specific breakdown by region
- Southern Hokkaido: Hakodate area
- Central Hokkaido : Oshamanbe and Tomakomai
With fabulous views and spectacular natural surroundings, these areas all make for an excellent destination to experience Hokkaido with temperatures in the summer reaching a pleasant 25°C. However as it starts to turn cold from around the middle of August, anyone travelling from this period onwards is advised to bring some long sleeved tops and bottoms with them.
- Central Hokkaido: Sapporo - Asahikawa
- Eastern Hokkaido: Obihiro, Rikubetsu , Kitam
Even during the Japanese Obon vacation (Buddhist custom to honor the spirits of one's ancestors) which takes place from the middle of August, temperatures can be as high as 29°C during the day but suddenly drop in the evening. For this reason, short sleeves, and light summer wear should be worn during the day but at night a parker or cardigan is advisable.
- Northern n and Eastern Hokkaido: Hiroo, Kushiro and Abashiri
This region is extremely cool up until the middle of August with temperatures ranging from 22-24°C. However, from the middle of August, morning frost sets in and the evenings become rather chilly. When visiting this region from the middle of August onwards, it is recommended that you bring the type of clothing you would normally wear in the autumn, such as long sleeved shirts, jumpers and bottoms.
Because children are susceptible to sudden changes in temperature, it is advised to wrap them up in an extra layer of clothing to keep them warm.
Wherever you decide to visit in Hokkaido this summer, we hope that the information above will be of use when making your decision.