Wednesday, 30 December 2015


Jigokudani "Hell Valley"

Noboribetsu is part of Shikotsu Toya National Park and is popular spot onsen resort town. It is a relatively small town and we decided to visit Jigokudani "Hell Valley" rather than the bear park for various reasons. Jikokudani is one of the main sources of the town's hot springs waters. The surface activity has had it described as "looks like hell smells like fart" which was reasonably accurate. The smell was rather torturous for someone who had a rather keen sense of smell...


Sengen Park Geyser. Water and steam ejected every 3 hours up to 8m high and last up to 50 min. We missed it.

Look like hell smell like fart. They weren't kidding

You can see the sulfurous water bubbling away


It really was smelly! .

Being only a small town, Noboribetsu had but one tiny shopping street but Oma and Opa managed to buy a backpack worth of goods including the backpack itself. All the restaurants and eateries seem to be closed. Pounced on the first one that opened at 1130am. Ramen fest - corn ramen, leek ramen, crab miso ramen, butter ramen. We tried them all and they were mostly delicious however the butter ramen wasn't quite as tasty as the others although it did smell divine! We're not sure if it was because there was no other restaurants open, but there was a significant line by the time we finished.

We returned to our ryokan to enjoy the facilities. We had produce to consume including rockmelon shoju (wine) and daifuku (mochi type balls). Rockmelon in Hokkaido is meant to be one of the best in the world. It tasted good but the rest of the afternoon became non-existant for me as I conked out, awakening just in time for a quick dip in the onsen prior to our very last ryokan dinner. One of the highlights for dinner was eating fugu (puffer fish). The children were somewhat wary having read that the toxin could kill if the fugu was not prepared properly. After watching Oma and Opa eat theirs without expiring, they duely polished up their serving.

Rockmelon wine so good even though I only had one glass

Mango flavoured honey

Eating fugu

carrot mousse with caviar

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