Lake Shikotsu, Hokkaido

Lake Shikotsu located in Chitose of the Hokkaido central part is a crater lake which has the 2nd pondage after Lake Biwa in Shiga Prefecture in Japan. The average depth of water is 265 meters, and the maximum depth of water of 363 meters is the 2nd depth in Japan. As a crater lake, it is the 2nd size in Hokkaido after the Kussharo lake.

It is proud of leading transparency in the world, and always compete with Lake Mashu for the first or second place in Japan.
It is rare that fog appears in Lake Shikotsu in contrast with the mysterious Lake Mashu which is famous by being filled with fog, so the lake like a specular surface can be enjoyed.

The lake surrounded by exceedingly high mountains is quiet and it is located in the southernmost in Japan as an ice-free lake which does not freeze in winter. The spring fresh green, the summer camping, the autumn colored leaves. The winter “Hyoto Matsuri” (Ice Pillar Festival) and it show various beautiful real faces through the four seasons. Moreover, it will be easy to access from urban areas. It is a big tourist spot crowded with many people on Sunday.

The color of water changes from cobalt blue to emerald green at the place where depth of water becomes deep. This is the feature of a crater lake. It is the breathtakingly beautiful landscape. Clear blue water, the figure with the primitive state is fantastic. It is filled with a romantic scent in a ship.

From the end of January through the beginning of February, “Shikotsuko Hyoto Matsuri” (Lake Shikotsu Ice Pillar Festival) is performed.
The art objects of large and small ice, which made by the water of the lake Shikotsu sprayed and freezed, stand in a row. It is the winter festival on behalf of Hokkaido.
It shines with the natural blue called “the Lake Shikotsu blue” in the daytime, and is lighted up by the colorful light and bring on a fantastic atmosphere at night.


Name:Lake Shikotsu
Address:Shikotsuko Chitose, Hokkaido 066-0281 Japan
Access:JR Chitose-sen Line “Chitose-eki Station” (30 minutes by car)
Tel:(+81) 11-299-1950 (Hokkaido Regional Environmental Affairs Office)
Official site:

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