Hi, happy Friday! I hope it had been an awesome week for you. My week is so-so, but it’s amazing that next week is August already and it’s my birthday month lol. I’ll show you some pictures I have with me when I went exploring Patchwork Road Biei in August last year. That was my second time in Biei, but my first time exploring Patchwork Roan in summer.
And I also dropped by the famous blue pond (Aoi Ike 青い池) and Shirahige Waterfall (白髭の滝) but I’m not going to write more about it because I just went there really quick (as it was almost sunset already).
Biei tagline is ‘the most beautiful village in Japan’. It’s located at the northern-central part of Hokkaido. Nearest airport to Biei would be Asahikawa, although it’s also reachable from Sapporo. If you go from Sapporo, you would need to take the express train to Asahikawa and transfer to local train bound for Furano. The entire trip will take around 2.5h approximately. See my post here if you want to read the details about transport to Biei.
This time, I don’t use the public transport as I booked a hotel in Asahikawa and rented a car for the whole day. It’s way cheaper than using the public transport and more convenient.
Exploring Patchwork Road Biei
Biei is really famous for it’s field and hills. Most tourist come here because there’s no building in Biei and you can explore the hills and fields. In summer this field will be full of colorful flowers.
There are 2 most famous driving road in Biei called the Patchwork Road and Panorama Road. To explore this road I suggest you to rent a car as public transport in Biei is not that frequent and driving gives you option to stay or move around at your pace. Don’t have license? Don’t worry, you can also rent a bike and cycle around the field in summer.
The first driving road is Patchwork road. This road is 14kms long and I’ll show you some of the famous spot..
a. Ken and Mary tree
Ken and Mary tree became so popular because there was a commercial shot here in 1970’s. Next to the tree, there’s a inn and restaurant where you can take a break too.
b. Parents and Child tree
You cannot get close to this tree and the best spot to take the picture of these trees are from afar.. You can find it at Google Map actually.
I think last time, there used to be 3 tress there. I don’t know what happened to the tree in the middle. lol
c. Seven Star Tree
This tree also become famous because of the commercial and it used to be in the packaging of Seven Star Cigarette.
d. Mild seven hill
This row of trees also becomes famous because of the cigarete commercial.
e. Hokusei hill observatory and Zerubu no Oka
These two are observatory where you can get the view of Biei’s hills and roads. I did not stopped at Zerubu no Oka because it was a bit crowded that time and the traffic is also a bit congested. Instead, I go to Hokusei hill observatory, which was famous for its pyramid like observatory area.
Don’t worry because normally in the observatory area or the area around the famous trees, there’s plenty of parking area. And around the observatory, there’s a street food stall where you can take a rest a well.
Similar to Patchwork Road, Panorama road also refer to a tremendous area of hills, field, and driving road.
I’ll introduce you some of the scenic point in Panorama Road.
a. A single Christmas Tree
This tree is famous because the shape looks like a perfect shape of Christmas Tree and there’s no other tree around this tree. It’s only one single tree in the spacious field.
I think this tree is best viewed in winter when the field becomes white.
b. Shikisai no Oka
Shikisai no Oka is a spacious flower park. You can do a lot of activities inside the park, such as riding a buggy ride, golf cart, seeing alpaca and many more. The park is huge, so renting a golf cart would be so helpful (especially if you’re tired and need to catch your flight in 2 hours, lol). There’s no entrance fee, however, to enjoy the activities inside, you need to pay around 600-800¥ (per activities).
I rode the buggy ride and rented the golf cart as well.
The park is full of colorful flowers in summer and pure white in winter. They do offer snow-mobile ride in winter. This park is the biggest flower park in Biei and therefore it’s a bit crowded. If you prefer a park with less people, I’d recommend Zerubu no Oka or Kanno farm. I think there’s less people there, but I’m not sure if they have various activities such as in Shikisai no Oka.
Also, there’s a place to rest in Shikisai no Oka where you can get some snack and also buy some souvenirs. It was my last destination before I need to rush to go to Asahikawa airport, so the souvenirs center was very convenient.
(Bought some Melon Jelly drink as well)
My whole experience in Biei was really fun. The entire area is really pretty and even though I’ve been there in winter, Biei in summer is totally different from what I see in winter.
Public facilities (toilet, resting place, parking car) is not hard to find as well. You can always go back to Central Biei to find more restaurant.
I’d recommend you to visit all the places I mentioned above if you go driving around Patchwork and Panorama Road. The cons of the trip is just… if you don’t have license or you cannot drive in Japan, it might be tiring as you’ll need to rent the bike. However, there’s also an electric bike to rent..
Another cons is.. because everyone is driving, the traffic might be congested at certain part of the area (normally around Zerubu no Oka).
And… that’s all!
I hope you enjoyed reading my experience in Biei. I’ll see you in the next post and have an awesome weekend ahead!