Hakodate City

The City of Hakodate (Hakodate-shi) - Hakodate Tourist Information

Mount Hakodate night sketches Hakodate City (Hakodate-shi) was founded in 1454, when Kono Kaganokami Masamichi, the head of a powerful family, built a palace built at the foot of Mt. Hakodate. The place was called Hakodate because the palace was shaped like a box (hako). The Sino-Japanese characters used to write it were changed to the present ones in 1869. Following the conclusion of the Japan-U...

Trappistine Convent

The beautiful green roof and brick contrast the religious institution; the Trappistine convent was built to house only nuns in 1898. Was established by eight nuns from France. Today, there are about 70 nuns, under the commandment of St. Benedict, supporting themselves in divine devotion by managing dry field and dairy farms. They keep the silence except for prayers...

Goryokaku Tower in Goryokaku Park

Goryokaku Park was Japan’s first western-style fort and was built to defend Ezo. It was completed in 1864. It is surrounded by a moat, and takes its name from its five-pointed star shape. The tower affords a fine view of the fort and the surrounding area, which is covered with cherry trees. You can enjoy the park view from the Goryokaku Tower, who stands about 50...

Special Historical Remain: Goryokaku Pentagonal Fort

The first Western style fort built in Japan. Because of its star-shape, it is called "Goryokaku" (pentagonal fort). Built by the Tokugawa shogunate to guard attacks from the northern region, with the Benten-Houdai battery (near Hakodate Dock), It took them seven years from 1857 to build the fort and the battery. A Dutch studies scholar Ayasaburo Takeda designed the...

Hakodate Morning Market

"Try the crabs. It's cheap!" you'll hear the energetic shouts in Hakodate dialect (Japanese) at the morning market. There are approximately 400 stores near the JR Hakodate Station West Entrance. The streets fill with people and cars when the stores open from about four in the morning. A countless varieties of fish and squids fresh out of water are promised to taste...

Hakodate Seaport Plaza

There were many scenes made at the pia of the "Aomori-Hakodate" ferry-route, beautiful and dramatic. After the "last cruise" the public spoke out to save the pia; the city answered by turning it into "Hakodate Seaport Plaza." One of the ferries, who played an active part in the Aomori-Hakodate ferry-route, "Mashu-maru" is moored at the pia. This attractive view is...

Cape Tachimachi / Family Grave of Takuboku Ishikawa

From Yachigasira Street Car Stop, walk up hill toward Mt. Hakodate. Follow the path to left side toward the Bayside Hospital until you see a narrow path with graves on both side of the road. It is about 20 minutes walk from Yachigasira to Cape Tachimachi. On the way to Cape Tachimachi, you'll see the family grave of Takuboku Ishikawa. There is a monument with the...

Mt. Hakodate

Mt. Hakodate is an isolated overhang in the Tsugaru Strait. The mountain's elevation is 334 meters (1096 feet), and its circumference is about 9 kilometers (5.6 miles). The volcanic activity of the mountain has ceased about two million years ago. "Gagyu-zan" is one of the many names of Mt. Hakodate; it means "Lying Cow Mountain" in Japanese, hence its shape. The...

St. John's Church

The Church history goes back to 1874 when Denning, an English missionary came to Hakodatge. He built a church in 1878 but it was burned by fire. The church moved to the current location during the 1910s, the church standing was remodeled in 1979. Tokyo St. Luke Hospital and Rikkyo University are affiliation of this church. During the mid to late 1800s, they...

Motomachi Roman Cathoric Church

On Nov. 1859, Rev. Fr. Mermet de Cashon (M.E.P.) came to Hakodate as a missionary. In 1861 Fr. Mermet built a chapel but it was burned down by fire of 1868 and 1921. The Gothic style church you see today was built in 1924. The altar was contributed by Pope Benedict XV and is the only altar in Japan to have such an honor. Behind the building is a cave in image of the...

Russian Orthodox Church

Russian Orthodox Church Many buildings in and around Motomachi have been designated as landmarks. Thus, the district attests to the history of Hakodate. The Old Public Hall of the City, built in 1910, is a two-story wooden building characteristic of Meiji era architecture. It is in the Colonial style, a classic English style of architecture. It has a symmetrical facade, and was designated...

Foreign Cemetery

In 1870, the consulate of five countries in Hakodate requested the city that an official foreign cemetery to be built; it was granted. From the path, the mountainside is Russian cemetery and the seaside is protestant cemetery. The protestant cemetery includes some English, Germans, Americans, Italians, and others. Across from the Russian cemetery, on the other side...

Old Russian Consulate

About ten minutes walk toward Mt. Hakodate from the City Bus stop "Saiwaizaka-slope" stands this architectural fine piece. A part of the second floor is made in half-timbered style; the red bricks contrast well with the white mortar. The first Russian consul general Goskevich came to his post in 1858. This building was built in 1908, and served as a Russian Consulate...

Chinese Memorial Hall

About seven minutes walk from Suehiro-cho Streetcar stop. When you clime up the Azumazaka-slope, it is on the left side of the street. The building was founded in 1910; is the only genuine Chinese style brick architecture in Japan. Chinese merchants who lost their community center in a fire of 1907 invited carpenters, sculptors, and plasterers from Shanghai to build...

Old British Consulate (Port Memorial Hall)

About 7 minutes walk on the Motoizaka-slope from the Suehiro-cho Streetcar Stop, you'll see the Union Jack. The first British consul Hordison came to Hakodate in 1859, and he rented a room from Shomyoji temple near by as the British consulate. After the consulate moved to the present location, it was burned by fire of 1907. The current building was rebuild in 1913....