Kelila Michaelson

Kelila Michaelson

Modified & Updated: 08 Sep 2023


Are you curious about the charming city of Kushiro? Well, get ready to be enthralled as we take you on a journey through 50 fascinating facts about this beautiful city. Located in the eastern part of Hokkaido, Japan, Kushiro is known for its picturesque landscapes, rich wildlife, and unique cultural heritage. From stunning natural attractions to delicious local cuisine, there is something to captivate everyone in this incredible city. Whether you’re planning a visit or simply want to expand your knowledge, this article will provide you with an in-depth look at the wonders of Kushiro. So, let’s dive in and discover the hidden gems and remarkable facets of this extraordinary city.

Table of Contents

The City of Mist

Kushiro is often referred to as the “City of Mist” due to its frequent foggy weather. This misty atmosphere adds an enchanting touch to the city’s landscapes and creates a serene and peaceful ambiance.

Lake Kushiro

Lake Kushiro, located within Kushiro-shitsugen National Park, is the largest freshwater lake in Japan. It spans over 80 square kilometers and is home to various species of birds and fish, making it a haven for nature lovers and birdwatching enthusiasts.

Kushiro Marshland

Kushiro Marshland, also known as Kushiro-shitsugen, is one of Japan’s largest wetlands and a designated national park. It is home to diverse plant and animal species, including the iconic red-crowned cranes, making it a UNESCO Ramsar site and a must-visit destination for ecotourism.

Red-Crowned Cranes

Kushiro is famous for its population of majestic red-crowned cranes, a symbol of good fortune and longevity in Japanese culture. Visitors can witness these graceful birds during the winter months at the Kushiro Shitsugen Crane Reserve, where they gather in large numbers.

Ainu Culture

The Ainu, an indigenous people of Hokkaido, have a deep-rooted presence in Kushiro. The city offers opportunities to learn about Ainu culture, history, and traditional crafts, showcasing the rich heritage of this unique culture.

Tancho Festival

Kushiro hosts the annual Tancho Festival to celebrate the red-crowned crane, also known as tancho in Japanese. This vibrant event attracts locals and tourists alike, featuring performances, parades, and exhibitions highlighting the importance of conserving these magnificent birds.

Rich Fishing Tradition

Kushiro has a long-standing fishing tradition, and its port is one of the largest in Hokkaido. The city’s markets offer an array of fresh seafood, including delicious sushi and sashimi, allowing visitors to savor the region’s bountiful marine flavors.

Kushiro Ramen

Indulge in a bowl of Kushiro Ramen, a local specialty known for its rich and flavorful soy sauce-based broth. This hearty noodle dish is often topped with succulent slices of pork and a variety of toppings, enticing the taste buds of visitors.

Outdoor Adventures in Akan Mashu National Park

Kushiro is a gateway to Akan Mashu National Park, famous for its pristine lakes and volcanoes. Outdoor enthusiasts can enjoy activities such as hiking, canoeing, and camping in this picturesque natural playground.

Kushiro Washo Market

Experience the vibrant atmosphere of Kushiro Washo Market, one of the largest seafood markets in Hokkaido. Browse through stalls selling a wide variety of fresh seafood, local produce, handmade crafts, and souvenirs.

Kushiro Gourmet Festival

Food lovers rejoice during the Kushiro Gourmet Festival, an annual event that showcases the city’s diverse culinary offerings. From mouthwatering seafood to delectable local delicacies, this festival provides a chance to indulge in Kushiro’s gastronomic delights.

Kushiro Art Museum

Immerse yourself in the world of art at the Kushiro Art Museum, which exhibits a collection of contemporary and traditional artworks. The museum also hosts various events and workshops, allowing visitors to engage with the local art community.

Tsurumidai Observation Deck

Visit the Tsurumidai Observation Deck to witness the breathtaking aerial dance of red-crowned cranes against the backdrop of Kushiro’s stunning landscapes. This panoramic viewpoint offers a stunning vantage point to observe these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat.

Kushiro City Museum

Discover the history and culture of Kushiro at the Kushiro City Museum. The museum showcases artifacts and exhibitions that depict the city’s development, from its early settlements to its modern transformation, offering insights into the region’s fascinating past.

Rokkatei Confectionery

Indulge your sweet tooth with confectioneries from Rokkatei, a renowned local confectionery brand famous for its delicious desserts and snacks. Try the popular Marusei Butter Sand cookies, which are a delightful treat loved by locals and visitors alike.

Kushiro Fireworks Festival

Witness the sky come alive with vibrant colors during the Kushiro Fireworks Festival, held annually during summer. This dazzling spectacle attracts thousands of spectators who gather along the Kushiro River to enjoy the mesmerizing display of fireworks.

Kushiro City Zoo

Take a trip to the Kushiro City Zoo, where you can encounter various animals, including the iconic red-crowned cranes. The zoo also offers educational activities and exhibits, making it an engaging experience for visitors of all ages.

Yonemachi Snow Candle Road

Experience the magical charm of Yonemachi Snow Candle Road, a winter wonderland adorned with thousands of glowing candles and snow sculptures. This enchanting event takes place annually and captivates visitors with its ethereal beauty.

Kushiro Tancho Nature Park

Explore the Kushiro Tancho Nature Park, dedicated to the conservation of red-crowned cranes and other wildlife. Stroll along the scenic trails, observe the cranes up close, and learn about ongoing efforts to protect these endangered birds.

Boat Tours on Kushiro River

Embark on a relaxing boat tour along the tranquil Kushiro River, where you can admire the city’s picturesque landscapes and spot various bird species. These guided tours offer a unique perspective on Kushiro’s natural beauty.

Kushiro City Library

If you’re a book lover, head to the Kushiro City Library, a modern and well-equipped facility that houses an extensive collection of books, including a wide range of English literature.

Visit Mount Nusamai Observatory

Enjoy panoramic views of the city from the Mount Nusamai Observatory, especially during sunset when the sky is painted with hues of orange and pink. It’s a perfect spot for photography enthusiasts.

Experience Kushiro’s Winter Festivals

Kushiro is known for its vibrant winter festivals, such as the Kushiro Winter Festival and the Kushiro Onsen Ice Festival. These events feature stunning ice sculptures, snow slides, and various winter activities, adding a touch of magic to the snowy season.

Kushiro City Aquarium

Explore the wonders of marine life at the Kushiro City Aquarium, where you can witness captivating dolphin and sea lion shows, and learn about the unique aquatic ecosystems of the region.

Nighttime Strolls in Fisherman’s Wharf

Take a leisurely stroll along Fisherman’s Wharf at night, where the shimmering lights of docked fishing vessels create a romantic and enchanting atmosphere. Enjoy the fresh sea breeze and indulge in delightful seafood at local restaurants.

Washo Market’s Morning Tuna Auction

Be an early riser and witness the exhilarating tuna auction at Kushiro Washo Market, where wholesalers gather to bid on the freshest tuna catches. It’s a unique opportunity to experience the vibrant energy of the local fish market.

Learn about Ainu Traditions at Ainu Museum Porotokotan

Discover the rich heritage of the Ainu people at Ainu Museum Porotokotan. This open-air museum consists of traditional Ainu houses, exhibits, and performances, offering visitors a glimpse into the unique culture and traditions of Hokkaido’s indigenous people.

Kushiro International Wetland Center

Learn about the importance of wetland conservation at the Kushiro International Wetland Center. This educational facility provides insights into the ecological significance of wetlands and offers guided tours to explore the nearby marshland.


Venture beyond Kushiro to explore the nearby Shirakami-Sanchi, a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of Japan’s last remaining virgin beech forests. Hike through its pristine trails and admire the untouched natural beauty of this enchanting forest.

Kushiro Horse-Drawn Tram

Take a nostalgic ride on the Kushiro Horse-Drawn Tram, an iconic mode of transportation that dates back to the early 20th century. Board the charming tram and enjoy a leisurely journey through the city streets.

Observe the Rare Blakiston’s Fish Owl

Kushiro is home to the elusive Blakiston’s fish owl, one of the world’s largest owl species. Join a guided tour or visit the Kushiro Marshland during winter to catch a glimpse of this magnificent nocturnal bird.

Kushiro City Historical Museum

Step back in time at the Kushiro City Historical Museum, which displays artifacts and exhibits showcasing the city’s history, including its development as a thriving fishing and trading hub.

Kushiro Art Street

Stroll along the artistic streets of Kushiro, adorned with murals, sculptures, and installations created by local artists. This vibrant outdoor gallery adds a unique and colorful touch to the city’s urban landscape.

Kushiro Ice Arena

Experience the thrill of ice skating at the Kushiro Ice Arena, a popular recreational spot for locals and visitors alike. Whether you’re a seasoned skater or a beginner, this indoor ice rink offers a fun-filled activity for everyone.

Kushiro City Marsh Observatory

Visit the Kushiro City Marsh Observatory for a bird’s-eye view of the Kushiro Marshland. From the observation deck, you can observe the vast expanse of wetlands and their unique flora and fauna.

Kushiro Urban Marsh

Explore the urban oasis of Kushiro Urban Marsh, a beautifully designed park that showcases the diverse plant life found in the region’s wetlands. Take a leisurely walk or join a guided tour to learn about the marshland ecosystem.

Kushiro Washo Market Museum

Discover the historical significance of Kushiro Washo Market at the Kushiro Washo Market Museum. Learn about the market’s evolution, its role in supporting the local economy, and the importance of seafood in the region.

Kushiro Manko Waterfront Park

Unwind at Kushiro Manko Waterfront Park, a picturesque seaside park offering stunning views of the Pacific Ocean. Enjoy a leisurely picnic, take a bicycle ride, or simply relax and admire the beauty of the coastal scenery.

Kushiro Shitsugen Art Museum

Immerse yourself in the world of art at the Kushiro Shitsugen Art Museum, which showcases a diverse collection of artworks inspired by the Kushiro Marshland and surrounding landscapes. Indulge in the artistic expressions that capture the essence of this unique natural environment.

Kushiro City Onsen

Unwind and rejuvenate at one of Kushiro’s soothing hot spring resorts, where you can immerse yourself in the healing waters and experience the essence of traditional Japanese relaxation. Let the warm mineral-rich baths melt away your stress and leave you refreshed.

Observation Tower at Lake Harutori

Climb the observation tower at Lake Harutori for a breathtaking view of this serene lake nestled in the Kushiro Marshland. Marvel at the vast expanse of water and the surrounding wetlands, creating a picturesque view that is sure to leave you in awe.

Kushiro Forest Park

Escape into nature at the Kushiro Forest Park, a sprawling recreational area with walking trails, picnic spots, and beautiful gardens. Reconnect with nature as you explore the lush greenery and peaceful surroundings.

Kushiro City Sports Park

Engage in outdoor activities at the Kushiro City Sports Park, which offers various sports facilities, including tennis courts, baseball fields, and a cycling track. Enjoy a day of recreation and exercise surrounded by the city’s natural beauty.

Kushiro Snow Land

Embrace the winter wonderland at Kushiro Snow Land, a family-friendly snow park offering a range of activities such as sledding, snowboarding, and ice skating. It’s a perfect spot to enjoy the snowy delights of Kushiro during the winter months.

Local Sake Breweries

Discover the art of sake brewing by visiting local breweries in Kushiro. Learn about the traditional brewing methods and taste a variety of sake flavors, ranging from crisp and dry to rich and sweet.

Kushiro City Hall Observatory

Head to the observation deck at Kushiro City Hall for a panoramic view of the city’s skyline. Enjoy breathtaking vistas of Kushiro’s urban landscape, mountains, and coastline, providing a unique perspective on the city’s diverse surroundings.

Kushiro Bird Observatory

Bird enthusiasts will delight in visiting the Kushiro Bird Observatory, located near the Kushiro Marshland. This facility offers bird-watching opportunities and educational programs to learn about the various avian species that inhabit the region.

Kushiro City Cultural Hall

Experience the vibrant arts and cultural scene of Kushiro at the Kushiro City Cultural Hall. Enjoy concerts, theater performances, and exhibitions that showcase the talents of local artists and entertainers.

Discover Traditional Ainu Crafts

Uncover the beauty of Ainu craftsmanship by exploring local shops in Kushiro that specialize in traditional Ainu crafts. Admire intricate wood carvings, woven textiles, and handcrafted jewelry, all showcasing the rich cultural heritage of the Ainu people.

Kushiro City Central Library

Get lost in the world of books at the Kushiro City Central Library, a modern haven for book lovers. This spacious library offers a vast collection of books, magazines, and other reading materials, making it a perfect spot for relaxing and expanding your knowledge.

Now that you know these 50 intriguing facts about Kushiro, it’s time to pack your bags and embark on an unforgettable journey to this charming city in Hokkaido. From its breathtaking natural landscapes to its rich cultural heritage, Kushiro offers a unique blend of serenity, adventure, and authentic Japanese hospitality. So, come and explore the wonders of Kushiro for an unforgettable travel experience!


In conclusion, Kushiro is a city rich in history, culture, and natural beauty. From its breathtaking landscapes to its unique wildlife, there is no shortage of fascinating facts about this charming city. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, history buff, or simply curious about exploring new places, Kushiro has something to offer everyone. From its iconic Tancho cranes to its vibrant seafood industry, there are countless reasons to visit and explore this hidden gem in Japan’s Hokkaido region. So, plan your trip to Kushiro and get ready to be awe-inspired by the wonders this city has to offer.


1. What is the best time to visit Kushiro?

The best time to visit Kushiro is during the summer months from June to September when the weather is mild and the city comes alive with various events and festivals.

2. How can I get to Kushiro?

You can reach Kushiro by air, with regular flights from major cities in Japan to Kushiro Airport. Alternatively, you can take a train from Sapporo or other cities in Hokkaido to Kushiro Station.

3. Are there any natural attractions in Kushiro?

Yes, Kushiro is known for its stunning natural attractions, including Kushiro Marsh, the largest wetland in Japan, and Akan National Park, home to beautiful crater lakes and hot springs.

4. Can I see the famous Tancho cranes in Kushiro?

Yes, Kushiro is one of the best places in Japan to spot the Tancho cranes. The Tancho Nature Park and the Kushiro Shitsugen Observatory offer excellent viewing opportunities.

5. Are there any cultural sites to visit in Kushiro?

Absolutely! Make sure to visit the Kushiro Fisherman’s Wharf MOO, which offers a glimpse into the city’s fishing heritage, and the Kushiro City Museum, where you can learn about the local culture and history.

6. What are some famous dishes I should try in Kushiro?

Don’t miss trying the local delicacies, such as Robatayaki, a traditional grilled seafood dish, and Kiritanpo, a local specialty made from pounded rice.

7. Are there any outdoor activities in Kushiro?

Yes, outdoor enthusiasts can enjoy activities like canoeing in the Kushiro River, hiking in Akan National Park, and taking a boat tour of the Kushiro Marsh.

8. Are there any accommodations available in Kushiro?

Yes, Kushiro offers a range of accommodations to suit every budget, including hotels, ryokans (traditional inns), and guesthouses.

9. Is Kushiro an expensive city to visit?

Kushiro is generally cheaper than major cities like Tokyo and Kyoto. However, costs can vary depending on the season and the activities you choose.

10. Can I visit Kushiro as a day trip from other cities in Hokkaido?

While it’s possible to visit Kushiro on a day trip, it is recommended to spend at least two to three days to fully explore the city and its surroundings.