New Chitose Airport is amazing.
okay, I know that’s a little too vague so let me tell you why.
whenever I land at an airport.. I always look for the toilet because in flight bathrooms are so disgusting I try my best to hold it until I reach my destination every time. have you heard about how the water you use to “wash” your hands in the plane’s super dirty? well..
so! what’s that above?
well there’s a screen..
it’s a in-toilet changing corner! so that you can take your shoes off and change your clothes without stepping on the dirty floor! not like most toilets in Japan are dirty anyway. haha. still the thought of it’s kind of.. errrr.
Hokkaido welcomed me with SNOW!!! heavy snow. as soon as I land it started snowing. and it was the heaviest snow I’ve ever seen.
I mean, it’s like as if it’s raining. but it’s all snow!
looking at that advert made me smileeeeeeeee. the plane was 2 hours from Kansai Airport (KIX) and I slept at the bench at the airport (found out I didn’t have to because checking in late was absolutely fine. but many people slept at the airport anywaysssss) the night before so I wasn’t in such a great mood. but looking at the word “ROYCE'” made me think of all the greatness Hokkaido has to offer =3. like Royce’s Nama Chocolate? =D.
if you’ve never been to Hokkaido, let me educate you a little bit on the great gifts you can bring back. other than Rokkatei, my favourite confectionery brand, there’s Shiroi Koibito or in other words, Ishiya Chocolate. I didn’t find it special the first time but I don’t know since when.. their white chocolate biscuit sandwich just tastes.. phenomenal. Hokkaido-ians take pride in this particular snack so if you’re in Hokkaido, I suggest you to buy the biggest box. =D. you’ll regret it if you don’t!
then of course, there’s Royce. since Royce is available in many places now, you might think.. why should I get Royce particularly in Hokkaido?
read on for the answer!
when I was there, which was around the New Years Eve, the New Chitose Airport seem to have two fictional ambassadors. Doraemon and Miku (pictures can be seen further down!). since my sister is a Doraemon freak, instead of bedtime stories, my sister read me Doraemon comics. I know this is weird. but as a kid, I’ve always HATED reading. it hurt my eyes! I only want to look at the drawings! partly because my sister spoiled me by reading everything out loud for me. which was great. and because of her, Doraemon’s a big part of my childhood. and I LOVE Doraemon =3.
my first breakfast! I had no expectations since it was.. airport food. I never thought that the bland udon can actually taste so good! I didn’t like Udon for it’s so thick and I think that it tastes like nothing but the noodles itself. I guess I hadn’t eaten good ones. also, I was surprised how New Chitose had so much food to offer. it was like a MALL. but I had to settle for a cheaper meal so Udon it is! other stuff were mostly over priced. it’s still an airport anyway =S.
here’s another Doraemon! they are everywhere and I love it. <3<3. had to take a picture with him <3<3.
now see that anime character? that’s Miku from Vocaloid! I loveeeeeeeee her. every person who’s into J-anime will know her. she’s like……. the princess of anime. she’s so pretty dressed as an ice princess =3. they even sell milk tea with her (ice princess version) in it! only in Hokkaido!
I am still amazed on how these are CHEESE. I’d like to taste them but they looked pricey T_T. these are the moments when.. I WISH I’M RICH pfft.
so apparently, there’s a famous ramen restaurant inside the airport. but because of time restrictions.. I didn’t get to line up for it T_T. (had to rush to Noboribetsu since I only planned to go there for a day trip!)
the eatery street! so pretty and most still closed because I arrived at an odd hour. slightly before 9am. my flight was.. 650am. hahaha.
so actually, I REALLY didn’t have much time. so I had to prioritize! though I’d like to see the Doraemon Sky Park and the bear world (okay maybe I’ll skip this. >_>. don’t sound interesting to me after the bear museum in Seoul left me in disappointments), I was aiming for ROYCE’ CHOCOLATE WORLD!
but before that!
here, you can get the famous Hokkaido Milk ice cream! I personally thought it was overpriced.
PS: Hokkaido’s McD uses Hokkaido Milk too! so it tastes pretty much the same for a much cheaper 100yen. I had three. compared to this one, it’s still 80yen cheaper. =D. yeah I’m a cheapskate. whatever.
HELLO KITTY STORE!!!
but it ain’t the usual Hello Kitty store because..
they sell dried squid? D=. HUGE ones. not normal to see such a thing. it wasn’t exactly over-priced too! but just.. really huge.
and more dried seafood. first day in Hokkaido and I was wow-ed.
TADA!!! okay, this is only a PART of it.
TADA!!! this is only the 2nd part of it..
TADA!!! they even have a museum here!!!
with a GIGANTIC chocolate bar!
I slightly skimped through the museum and..
became a chocolate addict.
polar bears! I didn’t see any this trip. sad. but I’ll make sure to visit them the next trip! I’LL BE BACK.
well did I mention… no I did not. THERE IS A CHOCOLATE FACTORY INSIDE THE AIRPORT!
this is like.. the only airport in THE WORLD with a chocolate factory inside of it. which is why this airport’s amazing.
you get to see how (some) chocolates are made!
the clean and advanced machines..
like really advanced machines. the chocolate molds were spinning around in so many directions it was so cool to just watch.
AHHH!!!! I wan’t a huge chocolate too! but I’d be fat. =/.
chocolate christmas tree, anyone?
since it is the year of the horse.. there’s a section just for horse chocolate.
but again, since I was on budget, I headed to my favourite of Royce’, their NAMA chocolate.
NAMA means fresh in Japanese. 생 in Korean. 生 in Kanji/Hanja/Chinese =D.
and the HIGHLIGHT of Royce’s Chocolate shop in Hokkaido…
wait for it…
TADA!!!! THAT VARIETY OF CHOCOLATES D=. there was so much I didn’t know which to pick. before I went there, I had the standard one, white chocolate, champagne, green tea.. and I forgot. each time I come back from Japan, I’ll buy a box or two because it’s so much cheaper in Japan U_U. anyways! the point is, normally they only have that same few flavours. while IN HOKKAIDO, there’s.. (look above.) there were weird flavours like wine, peach, grape, apple, banana.. few types of Japanese liquor, and the list goes on.
a closer look! apparently the most popular among girls is the strawberry and mixed fruit or was it just fruit. but I know the flavour is like.. a lot of fruits combined. hence mixed fruit =D. both of them didn’t sound appealing to me to be honest and I hate Japanese mixed fruit juices so..
a normal box of nama chocolate contains 20 pieces of chocolates which costs around 700yen. but the ones here.. T_____T. there were only 9 pieces and it is 500++yen. less than half of the amount and much more than half of the price. WHY!!!! well I guess because they only have it HERE IN HOKKAIDO. no choice sigh.
I wanted to buy them all. but.. you know. =S.
so we did a little calculation and found out that renting a car is actually the same price with taking the public transport from the airport to Noboribetsu then to Sapporo where we can return the car. it only costed around 1700yen extra for petrol. for all the freedom and time we get to save, I’d say… RENT A CAR! well only if you have a Japanese friend or someone familiar with driving abroad (and an international license). most places have English road signs but the GPS is in Japanese. bummer. but I’ve read about how some Malaysian families rented cars and drove around Japan without knowing Japanese, so can you! =D.
when I arrived, the weather was purrrrfect. and that’s one huge crab
they have a shark and a… bear? on the roof of that crab shop. I hope they don’t sell bear meat. the bear’s actually a famous character in Hokkaido from what I saw.
time to open up my package! they gave me a dried ice pack as “service” but heck, it’s so much more expensive here of COURSE it’s service. it’ll be rude if they’d ask me to pay pfft.
I bought some Japanese Whiskey flavour, some Okinawan flavour and… PEAR. the Okinawan flavour isn’t sold in Okinawa apparently. hahahaha. weird ey? I was wondering how it’ll taste since it has the most special design but.. it really tastes like an alcoholic nama chocolate. which was amazing anyway. the whiskey was a little strong but I loved it that way because their champagne had a very light champagne taste which was TOO LIGHT for my liking. the pear though, was an eye opener. I don’t know how to describe it but you somewhat taste two tastes at a different time. in a good way. at first it tastes just like the normal Au Lait, but afterwards, the sweet pear taste comes in to give it a beautiful ending.
if I had the money, I’d buy EVERYTHING.
if you’re ever doing a one day trip to Noboribetsu, be prepared to sit in the car for 2 hours to and fro. I got so hungry I ate all 3 boxes of chocolates at one go. which I regret. I should’ve saved some for later!!! pfft.
or I should’ve bought more. =S. I need a donation box.