Due to my astounding lack of geography, I booked a three night stay at Refore Youth Hostel in Shakotan. Evidently, I cannot estimate traveling times with accuracy despite having the aid of the internet. But I don't regret it. Being further from Otaru than we thought led us to spend more time in Shakotan.
Before I talk about Shakotan in general, can I mention how wonderful sleeping in a 和室(wa-shitsu - Japanese style room) is? I love 畳(tatami), 布団(futons) and everything that comes with it. It's a wonderful feeling.
And I'd really like to recommend Refore Youth Hostel. I booked them from Jalan.net but they have a website here. I would really stay there again just for the customer service alone. You see, before we even left for our trip, they kindly mailed us a guidebook of Shakotan. And while we were there, we were treated very well.
Before I come to the food, there are the people themselves. For the three days we were there, they ferried us around, from bringing us to see the sunset on the first night (picture below) to always driving us to the bus station so that we could get around. And when they found out that I didn't drink coffee, they automatically switched to tea for me.
Ok, now for the food. We signed up for breakfast and dinner, but in reality, we were fed four times a day. Breakfast and dinner were two large meals. In addition, we had "tea time" (around 4p.m) and desert time (at 9 pm). And even if we missed tea time, we would still get the cake at desert time. And all their food was delicious (I love this squid stuffed with mochi rice dish they served on the first night!)
|A Typical Breakfast|
|Dinner was too big, so here's the left hand side.|
|And the right hand side|
Within Shakotan, there is the glass-bottom boat and the hotspring. Both are really fun and after four years, I got to feed the seagulls with break crusts again! The boat-people even brought out and hung the Singapore flag for us.
As for the onsen. Well, I really really love them so much. And in a bit of self-promotion, recently, I wrote a piece on onsen at MindChicClub. But to get there, we walked the whole day (on purpose), and as a result, I have very strange tan lines (apart from the t-shirt tan, I have sandal strap tans). I think if it wasn't for the photos, people wouldn't believe that I went to hokkaido.
The true beauty of Shakotan is their scenary. There are all the interesting rocks (that have really interesting shapes) and of course, Kamui Misaki. Shakotan may be less well-known, but if you can speak reasonable Japanese, you should go there.
|Can you see the face in this rock?|
And now, the photo section~
|Another interesting head-shaped rock|
|The sunset that the owners of Refore brought us to see.|
|I think they're my new favourite birds|