Hokkaido

The Polar Bears of Asahiyama

I do not approve off Zoo’s. The idea of animals in captivity does not appeal to me. The only reason I had to visit Asahiyama Zoo was I couldn’t come back from Japan without meeting the Polar Bear. With their numbers plunging by 40% in the last 10 years, this might be my only chance of seeing the white bears.

Cruising the Sea of Okhotsk

It was supposed to be a drift ice cruise. Each year ice forms near the mouth of the Amur River in Russia. From there it drifts southward, aided by currents, until it eventually rolls onto Abashiri. The drift ice appears around late January and stays till mid-April. Unfortunately it was gone, almost a month early. What is going on!! Can someone please take a stand and stop this global warming?

Hokkaido Museum of Northern Peoples

We go on an incredible journey into the lives of the Ainu people at the Hokkaido Museum of Northern Peoples. The true origins of the Ainu people remain a big mystery to this day. It is common knowledge that the Japanese language is inspired by Chinese but it has to be stated that the Ainu speak a language that resembles no other language in Asia or its surroundings.

The sparkling Lake Mashū

We ride to lake of the Gods. The aborigine Ainu called it so, for a reason. Surrounded by 200 m high crater walls, the deep blue mirror-like waters of Lake Mashu make for a unique landscape. We are lucky travelers I guess, for it is frequently blanketed in heavy fog and a rarity to view at its scenic best