Monday, 23 April 2012


小樽 . 오타루

(A sightseeing stop in the Hong Thai Travel 7D Hokkaido Package Tour, my first packaged tour experience.)

About 1 hour away from Sapporo is the small town of Otaru 小樽. Mr. Tour Guide said the city is famous for its canal, music box and glassware, and he led us on a walking tour along Sakaimachi 堺町, starting from the Venezia Art Museum 北一ヴェネツィア美術館.

Venezia Art Museum
Ice-cream shop next to the museum. Melon and cherry blossom flavours!

Inside, I saw a huge gondola, and many glassware. Mom told me to not touch anything!

As we walked along the street, we saw many shops selling cakes and sweets, and some even gave us free samples to try, which were very tasty.

Everything for 1050 yen only!

Mr Tour Guide pointed out this interesting restaurant called 北一ホール to us, run by the famous glass company Kitaichi Glass 北一硝子, which is decorated and lighted up with 167 kerosene lamps inside. Grandma went in to have a look, and she said she can't possibly have coffee here when the smell of kerosene is very strong.

Their retail store next door

40 mins later, we reached the Marchen Crossroads メルヘン交差点 which had nearby, the Otaru Music Box Museum 小樽オルゴール堂 with its Steam Clock, the LeTao ルタオ sweets and cakes outlets, and the Silverbell Cafe 銀の鐘 1号店 that sells limited edition (unique to Otaru) Hello Kitty Otaru items.

Inside the Music Box Museum cum Store

Inside the Music Box Museum cum Store

Hello Kitty Otaru cup set for sale. Or, buy a coffee and get a Hello Kitty mug free.
Mom's Notes: Coffee is relatively pricier, and I did not think the mug quality and workmanship were good.
LeTao Plus - very catching colours!

LeTao Pathos

Mom spotted a small and quaint toy store tucked away up a slope and off we went! It felt like a toy treasure maze inside.

Tea break time!
I shared a soft ice-cream with Mom at a cafe on the second level of the shop called Rokkatei 六花亭. There were not many things to eat at the cafe, and not many seats too. We bought sweets, cookies and cakes from the shop at level 1, as well as from the shop Kitakarou 北菓楼 which was just next door. I was very happy that Mom bought my favourite Baumkuchen バームクーヘン, and Grandma said they were not as sweet as the ones in Singapore, which was a good thing.

(Mom's Notes: There are plenty of food samples made available in-store, so try them before buying!)

After dinner, all of us took photos at the famous Otaru Canal 小樽運河.
It was so cold that I ran back into the coach after we took the photos. Brrr ...

The Tourist Centre is just next to the canal

Dinner @ Aburiyaki Ungasouko 北海あぶりやき 運河倉庫

     Address: 北海道小樽市港町5-4 渋澤C号倉庫
     Operating Hours: 11:00 - 14:30 / 17:00 - 21:00

     Directions: 10 mins walk from Otaru Station 小樽駅
     Estimated cost per person: 3,500円 - 4,000円

It's a BBQ dinner tonight, and the restaurant 北海あぶりやき 運河倉庫 gave us an apron to wear to keep our clothes clean. Grandma said the seafood was very fresh! After we finished dinner, Mom sprayed something on my clothes to get rid of the smell. It was fun helping Mom spray that on her clothes.

For 4 persons

Grand Park Otaru Hotel グランドパーク小樽

We stayed one night at the Grand Park Otaru グランドパーク小樽, and it was directly connected to Wing Bay Otaru shopping mall next door.

There was little time for us to walk around, so Mom and I only managed to check out Aeon and Daiso. But at least I've got my doughnuts for supper!

Wish we had this in Singapore!
6 doh-balls set

View from the room
View from the room
Breakfast area

For an English or Chinese brochure on Otaru - click here

Read about our next stop - Asahi Beer Factory.
Read about our previous stop - Shiroi Koibito Park.


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