Posted on Sep 1, 2011

Posted on Sep 1, 2011

3 1


1 day(s)





Highest point





This hidden gem of a cycle road, the Shikotsu-ko to Chitose cycling road (or bike path, cycle path, whatever you call it in your country), is one of the most consistently forest-enveloped of any cycling road in Hokkaido. If you've ever cycled on the beautiful separated cycle paths in The Netherlands, you'll think that you've done a spacial warp; this cycle path is entirely separate from the main road, and passes through very pleasant forest.

Last updated Oct 26, 2018

Route Map

Need to know details


This cycleway links Chitose City and Lake Shikotsu, about 50km south of Sapporo City.

  • Chitose City terminus: Next to the BVE Petrol Station upstream on the Chitose River from the Chitose City Council buildings (here).
  • Lake Shikotsu terminus: At the junction of Route 453 and Route 16, just east of Lake Shikotsu Village (here).
General notes

Most cyclists will probably start from the Chitose end, but it is possible to link this cycle road up with the Sapporo-Shikotsu-ko ‘cycle road’ (which is actually just a sidewalk next to the main road) to create a nice long day trip. An equally appealing option might be to make it a day trip from Chitose to the lake and back again, with a nice swim in the middle; Lake Shikotsu is undoubtedly one of the cleanest lakes in Japan. What you see floating on the surface of the lake is natural pumice; Lake Shikotsu is a volcanic lake. Below are some other Hokkaido Wilds route guides that utilize this cycleway.

Route markers

The cycleway is well-marked.

Route Timing

The route is all uphill on the way from Chitose to the Lake, so bank on between 2-3 hours to the lake, and about 2 hours on the way back to Chitose.

Physical maps

Explore the official Japan topomaps online for the area around Chitose-Shikotsu Cycleway here. Follow these instructions to print out the area you would like as a hardcopy.

Weather forecast weather forecast for Chitose-Shikotsu Cycleway
Other resources
Onsen nearby

Shikotsu Village is home to a number of excellent onsen. Lake Shikotsu Kyuka-no-Mura (支笏湖休暇の村, here) is the cheapest, but we recommend the very up-market Mizu-no-Uta onsen (水の歌, here). An onsen on its own here is about 1,000yen, so their 2,000yen buffet lunch and onsen set is a pretty good deal. So consider booking ahead and treating yourself (NOTE: The price indicated on the Japanese page is 2,000yen, on the English page it says 3,240yen…we’ve only ever paid 2,000yen).

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Comments | Queries | Reports

Done this route up to Chitose-Shikotsu Cycleway? Thinking of doing it? Please post any feedback or queries here. Thanks!

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Printable Chitose-Shikotsu Cycleway Topomap


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REGION: The general mountain/geographical region the route is in.

BEST MONTH(S): Time of year a route is suited to visiting. Some pop all season, some are more limited.

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FREERIDE/SKITOUR: Very subjective, but is a route more-of-a-walk-than-a-ski or the other way around? Some routes are all about the screaming downhill (freeride), some are more about the hunt for a peak or nice forest (ski-tour). Some are in between. 

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Chitose-Shikotsu Cycleway Difficulty Rating





Vertical Gain



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GRADES range from A (very difficult) to D (easy). Hazards include exposure to avalanche and fall risk. More details here. Rating rubric adapted from Hokkaido Yukiyama Guidebook 北海道雪山ガイド.