[Lake Tofustu between Abashiri and Koshimizu] Marsh and Bird‐Watching Can Be Enjoyed in Paradise of Wild Birds
August 11th, 2016
Lake Tofutsu (濤沸湖) in the southeastern part of Abashiri city is a brackish lake between the Abashiri and Koshimizu town. The perimeter of the lake is about 27 km. The maximum water depth is 2.5 m. The Tofutsu means a mouth of the lake in Ainu language, and Ainu people called "a place that birds always stay", too. The lake has been designed as the Ramsar Convention since 2005, and is well-known as a rest place for waterfowl, and about 250 kinds of water birds can be watched through a whole year, and about 40 kinds of migratory birds such as swan stop by the lake in a winter.
Lake Tofutsu Guidebook
Koshimizu Primeval Flower Garden (小清水原生花園) between the Sea of Okhotsk and the Lake Tofutsu is at the north side of the lake, and Tofutsuko Wooden Path (濤沸湖木道), Koshimizu Primeval Flower Garden Lookout Stable (小清水原生花園 展望牧舎) and Viewpoint Parking Genseikaen Parking Lot (ビューポイントパーキング 原生花園駐車場) are built along Shari National Route (National Route 244). Hakucho Park (白鳥公園) with the Tofutsu-ko Hakucho Park Birdwatching Building (濤沸湖白鳥公園野鳥観察舎) and the Tofutsu-ko Waterwole and Wetland Center (濤沸湖水鳥・湿地センター) is at the west side of the lake.
The Lake Tofustu is about 15 km away from the center of the Abashiri city, and a restraunt, a cafe and a convenience store are built around here. Maehama Camping Ground (浜清水前浜キャンプ場), Futorei Observation Deck (フレトイ展望台), Kitahama Station (北浜駅) and Genseitei (原生亭) are relatively near here. Free flowing moor hot springs can be enjoyed at the Genseitei. A direct bus does not run between Sapporo or New Chitose Airport and here, but a express bus "Dollymint Okhotsk-go (ドリーミントオホーツク号)" runs between the Sapporo and the Abashiri.
List of Highway Bus
Refer to following a company for the highway bus service between the Abashiri and the Sapporo.
|(Chuo Bus)中央バス||From Sapporo to Abashiri|
|(Chuo Bus)中央バス||From Abashiri to Sapporo|
Kitahama Station (北浜駅) is an unmanned train station along the Senmo line (釧網線) in the southeastern part of Abashiri city, and is relatively close to Lake Tofutsu (濤沸湖), Koshimizu Primeval Flower Garden (小清水原生花園) and Lake Mokoto (藻琴湖). It is well-known as the closest station to the Sea of Okhotsk in Japan, and its distance is about 20 m from the station to a beach. The distance is about 50 m from the stataion to the sea. In a winter, the sea is covered with drift ice, so the station is popluar as the only station that the drift ice can be seen from a platform in the Japan. The small station has only a waiting room and Cafe "Teishaba" (軽食喫茶「停車場」), but it wss used as a shooting place for various movie or TV drama such as Abashiri Prison (網走番外地), The Ugly Duckling (みにくいアヒルの子) and If You Are the One, so a lot of oversea tourists come. Admission free. A free parking is free of charged. Article is here
Furetoi Observation Deck
Furetoi Observation Deck (フレトイ展望台) is in Koshimizu town located in the southeastern part of Abashiri city and is adjacent to Hamakoshimizu Maehama Campsite (浜小清水前浜キャンプ場), and is near Hamakoshimizu Station (浜小清水駅) and Road Station Hanayaka koshimizu (道の駅「はなやか（葉菜野花）小清水」). Furetoi means the end of a dunea sandhill in Ainu language, and the Furetoi Observation Deck is on the end of Koshimizu Primeval Flower Garden (小清水原生花園). The pyramid-shaped observation deck take a person's eye. Admission free. A parking lot is free of charge. Article is here
Abashiri (網走) that about 40,000 people live is the 20th largest tourist city in Hokkaido, and is one of regional hub cities of the Northeastern Hokkaido area. It is also a fisheries city facing the Sea of Okhotsk, and Crab, Idiot Fish, Whale and Salmon are famous as a local specialty. As for a climate, it is chilly that temperature rises to nearly 25 degrees in a summer, and it is cold that temperature falls to nearly -5 degrees in a winter, and it does not snow hard, too. It may be said that the Abashiri is relativelly warm climate in the Hokkaido. The Abashiri is well-known for drift ice reaching to the coast, and is famous as a winter tourist spot, too, and is roughly divided into 2 areas, a old city area (a neighborhood of Abashiri River mouth) and a new suburbs area. The new suburbs area is more developed than the old city area, and has more restaurants than the old city area. Article is here
List of Lake Tofustu Tourist Attractions
There are the Tofutsu-ko Hakucho Park Birdwatching Building, the Tofutsu-ko Waterwole and Wetland Center, the Tofutsuko Wooden Path, the Koshimizu Primeval Flower Garden and the Koshimizu Primeval Flower Garden Lookout Stable around the lake. My visited places are as follows.
Tofutsu-ko Hakucho Park Birdwatching Building and Tofutsu-ko Waterwole and Wetland Center
The Hakucho Park is at the west side of the lake, the Tofutsu-ko Hakucho Park Birdwatching Building, the Tofutsu-ko Waterwole and Wetland Center and a wooden path with around 10 m in total length are built on the site. Only tourist attraction that is close the lakeshore, and it is a popular place to observe the swan in the winter. Admission free. A parking lot is free of charge. Restrooms are provided at the buildings.
Atmosphere of Lake Tofustu Can Be Watched on Youtube
|Admission fee||Free of charge|
|Parking lot||Free parking lot is provided (19 Cars)|
|Business hours||Open 24 hours *Tofutsu-ko Waterwole and Wetland Center: 09:00-17:00|
|Regular closing day||Open all year round *Tofutsu-ko Waterwole and Wetland Center: Monday and New Year's holiday|
|Home page||Home page is here|
|Mapcode||305 448 045*64|
Tofutsuko Wooden Path
Tofutsuko Wooden Path (濤沸湖木道) is on the opposite side of the Koshimizu Primeval Flower Garden, and 126 m wooden path is buile on the lakeside. Rugosa Rose, Blackberry Lily and Hosta Rectifolia bloom on the lakeside, and it has an atmosphere such as a primeval flower garden. Bird-watching Deck (野鳥観察デッキ) is on the tip of the wooden path, so visitors can watch wild birds. 20,000-30,000 Anseriformes come every year, and Mallard Duck, Common Merganser and White-tailed Eagle can be watched through a whole year, and Steller's Sea Eagle can be watched in the winter. Admission free. A parking lot is free of charge.
Tofutsuko Wooden Path in Japanese
|Admission fee||Free of charge|
|Parking lot||A parking lot at Koshimizu Primeval Flower Garden is available|
|Business hours||Open 24 hours|
|Regular closing day||Open all year round|
|Home page||Home page is here|
|Mapcode||958 080 484*53|
Koshimizu Primeval Flower Garden
Koshimizu Primeval Flower Garden (小清水原生花園) is a primeval flower garden along Shari National Route (斜里国道 * National Route 244) in Koshimizu town located in the southeastern part of Abashiri city, and is between the Sea of Okhotsk (オホーツク海) and Lake Tofustu (濤沸湖). The area is about 275 ha. Flowers and grass grow thick on a slim sand dune with 8 km in width, and this place sparked the primeval flower garden in Hokkaido, and is the only primeval flower garden with a station in the Hokkaido's primeval flower garden. Here is a shooting place for Japanese famous movie "The Yellow Handkerchief" that Mr. Ken Takakura (高倉健) play the lead. Admission free. A parking lot is free of charge. Article is here
List of Accommodations
Refer to following websites for the accommodations around the Lake Tofustu. You can get information regarding online reviews and photos.
|Koshimizu Hanakotori-no-Yado Youth Hostel(小清水はなことりの宿 ユースホステル)|
A page of Abashiri is here