What's On In Niseko—August 2017
It's a jam-packed month with summer festivals, cycling and more.
August is a great time of year for exploring Niseko's abundant nature and discovering Japan's cultural traditions. The air is fresh and the skies are beautiful—the outdoors are constantly calling you. Best of all, August is brimming with events, providing plenty of reasons to get out and experience Niseko.
Here's a snapshot of what's coming up:
Japanese Obon Festivals
Obon is the Festival of Souls and it's said that during this time of year the spirits of the deceased return to visit their relatives. Japanese people traditionally travel to their hometowns to pay respects to their ancestors. With so many people coming home, most towns and cities hold summer festivals around this period.
This year, Obon is 13 – 15 August and most town festivals are held close to these dates.
- See our events page for the full list of Obon festivals, or click one of the links below:
- Niseko Town Tanabata Fireworks Festival - 5 August
- Kutchan Town Potato Festival - 5 – 6 August
- Kyowa Town Scarecrow Festival - 19 – 20 August
Hanazono Hill Climb
In its eighth year, the Hanazono Hill Climb is open to riders of all levels and is expecting to exceed 700 participants this year. The 15 km starts with a peloton parade through downtown Kutchan, challenges riders with a leg-burning climb of over 600 vertical metres before finishing with a sprint finish behind Mt Niseko Annupuri.
To see the schedule and course route visit our events page here.
Location: Kutchan Town, Hanazono Hill Climb route
Date: 6 August
The Japanese mountain biking Downhill Series is coming to Niseko-Hirafu for the first time this year. The event is open to anyone from young children to professionals. Spectators are also welcome to catch the wild action.
To learn more about the Downhill Series or to register, see our events page here.
Location: Grand Hirafu Niseko Resort, Summer Gondola and Welcome Centre
Date: 5 – 6 August
Niseko Green Market
Held every summer in Niseko-Hirafu, this open market brings together local farmers and businesses selling a variety of vegetables, fresh seafood and baked treats. This event always draws a crowd and sells out fast!
To learn more about the Niseko Green Market, see our events page here.
Location: Grand Hirafu Welcome Centre
Date: 11 August
Attracting large numbers of Niseko's international community, this new event is the most international festival in Hokkaido. Local restaurants and shops come together to cook up tasty food, give away prizes, and put on live performances and games. It's a wonderful window into Niseko's mixed international and Japanese community and ends with a spectacular finale featuring taiko drumming intermixed with fireworks.
To read more about the Hirafu Festival, see our events page here.
Location: Niseko-Hirafu's Sun Sports Land
Date: 19 August
Niseko Town Kaributo Shrine Festival
The Omikoshi are carried around the town to bring luck to local residents. Schools and many businesses shut down for the day so that everyone can participate.
For more information about Niseko Town's Kaributo Shrine Festival, see our events page here.
Location: Niseko Town, Kaributo Shrine
Date: 25 August