Niseko is a Hiking Heaven

Niseko is the perfect summer location to reconnect with the outdoors and invigorate the mind and body. Pull on your hiking boots, spray on some insect repellant and get out into nature's playground.

A summer holiday in the shade of some of the world's most famous mountains provides travellers a unique opportunity to tackle some amazing trails and hiking routes. There are options for all fitness levels with gentle, maintained trails for beginners and other more rugged treks for outdoor enthusiasts. We highly recommend setting off early in the morning to catch the golden sunrise and escape the high temperatures.

Nitonupuri Hike Hiking Mountain 4

View of Iwaonupuri and Annupuri from the peak of Nitonupuri. Photo credit: Conor Acutt

For outdoor beginners or those looking to explore the area with older group members or children, the Niseko marshes are a must see. Shinsen-numa and Kagami-numa (numa meaning 'swamp area') are easy to access trails with non technical terrain and gradual inclines. Some of the most beautiful scenery in the area can be seen along these easier trails.

kagami numa hike hiking

Kagami-numa marsh is easily accessible from Hanazono. Photo credit: Conor Acutt

Those looking for a more vertical adventure can drive to the Goshiki Onsen parking lot where they will have access to a number of more challenging climbs. From this base explorers can venture to Nitonupuri, Chisenupuri, Iwaonupuri or the famous Annupuri. These climbs can generally be completed in 2-3 hours with an average level of fitness. To increase the challenge, some local Niseko trail runners will peak a number of these mountains in one day. 

Views from these peaks are absolutely stunning. The sea towards Iwanai is visible on a clear day and the surrounding farmland and towns seem to roll on forever. If you are lucky enough you may even witness a cloud-inversion. A phenomenon where the low-lying areas are filled with cloud and the sky above is clear. 

Goshiki Iwaonupuri Hiking

Views of Goshiki Onsen from the Iwaonupuri route. Photo credit: Conor Acutt

The jewel in Niseko's crown is the famous Mt Yotei. With the trek taking 3-4 hours to the peak this option is not for the faint hearted. There are four possible trail heads leading to the peak of Mt Yotei with the Makkari trail being the least technical. Once at the peak hikers can enjoy views of the surrounding area and the cavernous crater. There's even a hut near the peak for overnight stays. A perfect way to be in prime position for the sunrise.

Nitonupuri Hike Hiking Mountain 3

Heading towards the peak of Nitonupuri. Photo credit: Conor Acutt

Remember to observe all of the warnings and signs when out on the trails. Stick to the marked paths and boardwalks and travel with a group or partner if you can. Always let a friend know where you and your group will be hiking and be sure to write your details in the dairies located at the beginning of most trails.


Hiking a little slow for you? Check out Niseko's best flow trails and mountain bike courses.