Things to Do in Otaru
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During your time in Sapporo, make a day trip to the nearby harbor city of Otaru (Otaru-shi) to explore its unique canals and preserved herring mansions that offer a glimpse into Otaru’s past as a herring fishing hub. Today, the town’s cobblestone streets are hung with picturesque gas lamps, and the stone warehouses along its network of canals have been converted into a vibrant community of cafes, restaurants, shops and glassworks.
Glassblowers are especially revered here, and you can visit local glassmakers like Kitaichi Glassworks Company, or take a glass blowing lesson at the Glass Studio. Other sights include the Otaru museum, housed in a restored warehouse, and the Music Box Museum, which has a half dozen locations around town and a collection of more than 25,000 music boxes.