Hokkaido: Glittering corridor of lights cheer tourists

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Tourists enjoy the illuminated tunnel created at Toyako Onsen.

TOYAKO, Hokkaido – Tourists arriving at Toyako Onsen in Hokkaido are enjoying the warm welcome of an illuminated tunnel at the Nigiwai Hiroba space in the center of the hot springs resort, with twinkling green, blue, pink and other bulbs adding to the delight.

This annual winter tradition started in 2007, the year before the Group of Eight Hokkaido Toyako Summit was held, to commemorate the gathering. The Toyako Onsen Tourist Association sponsors the event.

The 70-meter-long, 5-meter-wide tunnel is decorated with approximately 400,000 light bulbs. In the middle of the S-shaped tunnel, there is a photo spot with a dome 10 meters in diameter, where the 3-D letters “TOYA” seem to float in the air. Tourists can pose for photos while enjoying the glittering world of light.

The welcoming event will be held every day from 5 to 10 p.m. through March 31, and from 6 p.m. in March. Admission is free.