Sapporo to Hakodate train. hakodate station or shin-hakodate-hokuto for shinkansen bullet train to tokyo. with JR pass, with JR hokkaido pass. Backpacking Hokkaido Japan travel blog

 

 

So you’re going…

 

Sapporo…

 

Sapporo to Hakodate. Things to do in Sapporo. Backpacking Hokkaido Japan

 

…to…

 

…Hakodate!

 

Sapporo to Hakodate. Things to do in Hakodate. Backpacking Hokkaido Japan

 

 

When it comes to train travel in Japan, Hakodate is probably best known as being the last station up north on the shinkansen bullet train. (For now anyway.)

 

So if you’re looking to go from Sapporo to Hakodate so you can further continue on to Tokyo, the most important thing to know is…

 

 

There’s a Hakodate Station and there’s a Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto Station

Sapporo to Hakodate train - super hokuto limited express JR train. Hakodate train station. Backpacking Hokkaido Japan

 

Either way, you’ll end up on the same train, but the difference will be where to get off!

 

Hakodate Station = city

If you’ll be spending the night in Hakodate, you’ll want to go to Hakodate Station which will drop you basically in the middle of the city.

I stayed at this hostel in Hakodate and got there by taking a short ride on the Hakodate tram.

Or you’ll go to the city if you want to spend a few hours in the city before moving on to your next destination!

Similar to Tokyo Station coin lockers, there are coin lockers at the Hakodate train station so you can drop your luggage off as you explore the city during the day.

 

Sapporo to Hakodate. Coin lockers at Hakodate train station for luggage storage. Backpacking Hokkaido Japan

 

Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto Station = shinkansen

If you’re going to be riding the shinkansen, you need to go to Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto Station.

 

 

Other than that…

It can be pretty easy to get from Sapporo to Hakodate by train!

 

 

🗾⛄

Side note! The JR pass makes it time efficient to travel around Japan by train and is a popular option among travelers! See the cost of a JR pass and how to figure out if it will be worth it for you! Also be sure to see more quick Japan travel tips if it's your first trip to Japan, as well as ideas for how to spend winter in Japan - 10 day winter itinerary with the Japan Alps and 7 day winter itinerary in Hokkaido!


 

 

So…

How to get to Hakodate from Sapporo?!

Once you’ve taken the train a couple of times in Hokkaido, it’ll become pretty easy.

That’s because once you’re at the Sapporo train station, you basically just follow the signs!

So even if this becomes your first train ride in Hokkaido… just follow the signs!

First you’ll follow the signs to the JR train line…

 

Sapporo to Hakodate train. Sapporo station JR train how to get there. Backpacking Hokkaido Japan

 

And then you’ll arrive at the ticket gate.

 

Sapporo to Hakodate train. Sapporo station train ticket gate. Backpacking Hokkaido Japan

 

And then you mainly just need to know the final destination of your train.

 

So in the case of Hakodate…

You’re looking for a train to Hakodate!

Sapporo to Hakodate train. Sapporo station train timings to Hakodate for super hokuto limited express jr train to hakodate. Backpacking Hokkaido Japan

 

This is the same train you would take to get to Noboribetsu Onsen!

 

This will be a train called “Super Hokuto” but it’s really not that important to remember the name of the train.

It’ll be easier to remember Hakodate since that’s where you’re going, and that’s really all you need to remember when looking at the sign boards!

The digital boards switch between English and Japanese.

The sign will also tell you which platform the train departs from, so you’ll check to see where you need to go…

And then go there!

 

Sapporo to Hakodate train. Sapporo station platform. Backpacking Hokkaido Japan

 

And then wait for the train to arrive!

 

Sapporo to Hakodate train - super hokuto limited express JR train. Sapporo train station. Backpacking Hokkaido Japan

 

Then enjoy the train ride that’s around 3.5 hours.

 

Sapporo to Hakodate train seating - reserved or nonreserved. Backpacking Hokkaido Japan

Sapporo to Hakodate train ride along coast. Backpacking Hokkaido Japan

 

And then get off in Hakodate!

 

Sapporo to Hakodate train - super hokuto limited express JR train. Hakodate train station. Backpacking Hokkaido Japan

 

The train will first stop at Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto.

Then about 15 minutes later will be the final destination of Hakodate Station.

 

 

How much does the limited express train to Hakodate cost?

Google Maps and the Japan Travel Navitime app can be good for figuring out a rough estimate of how much any journey around Hokkaido may cost. (It may not be perfect, but it’s good for getting an idea.)

You can expect the Sapporo to Hakodate limited express train to cost around 8,830 yen (US$80).

 

If you’re traveling with a JR pass, it’s FREE!

The JR Hokkaido line has a network of trains around Hokkaido.

While there aren’t shinkansen bullet trains around most of Hokkaido, there are limited express trains that go to the main cities.

And on these trains, if you’re traveling with a JR pass or a JR Hokkaido pass, your pass will cover you.

If you’re NOT traveling with a JR pass, there are cheaper ways to get to Hakodate that you may want to look into. (But it will most likely require a sacrifice with the alternatives being a longer journey.)

 

 

Do you need to make seat reservations with the JR pass?

It’s not a requirement to make seat reservations if you’re traveling with a regular JR pass on the limited express Hokkaido trains.

But if you want to, you can do so at Sapporo Station at any time before your train leaves by going to the ticket counter office with the little green seat picture.

 

Sapporo to Hakodate train. Sapporo station JR ticket office for seat reservations, reserved tickets. Backpacking Hokkaido Japan

 

That said, for the shinkansen train from Hakodate to Tokyo, you DO need to make reservations.

This is one of the few shinkansen bullet trains that have reserved seating ONLY.

Most shinkansen trains have both reserved and non-reserved seating which allows you to just show up to the train station and hop on the next train that arrives.

But there are no non-reserved train cars on the shinkansen from Hakodate, so be sure to stop by the JR office before you board the train!

You can make the reservation at Sapporo Station too. (And pretty much any major Hokkaido train station with one of these JR ticket offices.)

 

 

Now…

What are the train timings to Hakodate?!

…and to Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto?

 

JR Hokkaido train timetable

Sapporo to Hakodate train - JR Hokkaido train timetable. Backpacking Hokkaido Japan

 

Once you get to Hokkaido, head to the JR office at a train station to grab yourself the little JR Hokkaido train timetable booklet!

I referred to this SO much when I was traveling around Hokkaido.

I did occasionally check Google Maps for suggested routes, which can help to know which train routes to look for.

But because the train timings are fewer in some parts of Hokkaido, it’s important to confirm the timings.

So the listed train timings below are from the timetable booklet for dates March 2019 onwards.

You can generally expect this to last for about a year, although someone at the JR ticket counter did tell me that it usually doesn’t change much from year to year.

So in case you’re doing research for a trip for April 2020 onwards, you can use these JR Hokkaido train timings for general research purposes, and then confirm the timings when you’re in Hokkaido.

 

 

Now…

Sapporo to Hakodate train timings

These are the listed train timings for the limited express trains – always confirm once at the train station, as timings can change!

 

Listed as: Sapporo Station departure time – Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto Station arrival time – Hakodate Station arrival time
  • 6:00am – 9:13am – 9:29am
  • 6:53am – 10:22am – 10:38am
  • 8:39am – 12:07pm – 12:23pm
  • 9:32am – 1:06pm – 1:23pm
  • 10:44am – 2:12pm – 2:27pm
  • 12:16pm – 3:49pm – 4:05pm
  • 1:32pm – 4:55pm – 5:10pm
  • 2:45pm – 6:09pm – 6:25pm
  • 3:39pm – 7:08pm – 7:24pm
  • 4:39pm – 8:11pm – 8:27pm
  • 6:08pm – 9:39pm – 9:56pm
  • 8:00pm – 11:23pm – 11:38pm

 

 

On the timetables below, it’s set up so that you can compare the Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto Station arrival time to the departure time of the shinkansen train to Tokyo.

 

Sapporo to Hakodate train - JR Hokkaido train timetable timings morning train. Backpacking Hokkaido Japan

Page 2 of the 2019 JR Hokkaido train timetable

 

Sapporo to Hakodate train - JR Hokkaido train timetable timings afternoon train. Backpacking Hokkaido Japan

Page 3 of the 2019 JR Hokkaido train timetable

 

Sapporo to Hakodate train - JR Hokkaido train timetable timings evening, last train. Backpacking Hokkaido Japan

Page 4 of the 2019 JR Hokkaido train timetable

 

Summary?!

The train from Sapporo to Hakodate takes around 3.5 hours, and there are generally trains leaving around once an hour.

 

HAPPY SAPPORO TO HAKODATE TRAIN RIDE!

 

 



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