Hakodate was Japan’s first international trading port in 1859. Several red brick buildings formerly used as warehouses survived the test of time, and have been converted into one of Hakodate’s famous sightseeing spot housing different beer halls, restaurants, sweet shops and unique souvenir shops. Today, it still continues to transport visitors to a feeling of nostalgia and unforgettable time. Here’s a quick guide on where to eat, what to do and shop at Kanemori’s Red Brick Warehouses… KANEMORI RED BRICK WAREHOUSE 14 – 12, Suehiro-cho , Hakodate City Telephone: 0138-27-5530 Website: www.hakodate-kanemori.com How To Get There: 25-minutes by airport 5-minutes by car or 15-minute by foo from the JR Station Take a streetcar for Yachigashira or Dock-mae Station (Approximately five minute by streetcar)Get off at Jujigai Station Approximately two minute walk from the station. Where To Eat: If you are looking for a ramen restaurant in Hakodate, you should go to Ajisai! They have a branch near the bay. Hakodate’s specialty is the Shio (salt) Ramen. Very light and simple with a rich flavorful clear salt broth. (750 yen) What makes the soup special is all the ingredients used in the soup are produced in Hokkaido even the kelp that adds that extra umami flavor. Don’t forget to order their yummy gyoza! Bite into Japan’s best local burger! Hakodate in Hokkaido may be famed for their fresh seafood and rich salt-ramen, but it’s their unique burger joint serving this juicy and addictive Chinese Chicken Burger that locals and tourists rave about. Read more: LUCKY PIERROT: HAKODATE’S NO.1 BURGER CHAIN! Lucky Pierrot currently has 17 branches found all over the city. Each restaurant has a unique theme that sets it apart from all the other fast food stores. Did I mention it’s only found in Hakodate? Chinese Chicken Burger (650 yen + fries and drinks). Lucky Pierrot Best Seller! Addictively juicy fried chicken drizzled with sweet-and-spicy sauce with a slight hint of ginger that matches perfectly with the crunchy lettuce. A must-try! One of the reasons the food here tastes so great is that it’s prepared upon order using fresh ingredients. Pair your chicken with their gravy fries that come in a white mug. What to do (Traditional Costume Rentals): Stroll around the bay area in a costume, dress up in a classic kimono, samurai or a ninja outfit! Did I mention it takes only 10-minutes to dress up? It’s perfect for tourists who have a tight schedule. You can find the shop at Hakodate Meejikan. A historic building that was formerly Hakodate Post Office in 1911. It currently serves as a shopping mall selling souvenirs such as folk crafts and glassware. The clerks will help you fit in the outfit. It takes around 10-minutes to get dress. Rate: 3,000 yen for the first hour, then additional 1,000 yen for every other hour, hair service and make-up 1,000 yen and shoes 500 yen. After changing go out and stroll around the scenery wearing the costume of your choice. What To Shop: It is a nice shopping area not only for tourists but also for the locals of Hakodate to enjoy. There are around 58 different shops inside with Hasegawa store, Starbucks and Lucky Pierrot among the favorite restaurants. You can get sweets, traditional Japanese dolls, samurai swords, chopsticks, food, trendy clothing and all kinds of souvenirs. Hakodate’s number one product is the squid. In fact, half of the squid caught in Hokkaido is from this area. They have all sorts of squid products you can try. One of them is the vacuum packed stuffed squid (ikameshi, stuffed with rice). There is also squid pickled in salt, dried squid, and shredded dried squid. Enjoy subtle shading of all-natural squid ink prints created in Hakodate. And various sweets like these creamy Japanese cheesecakes.
Made from fresh Hokkaido milk and eggs, these creamy cheesecakes literally melts in your mouth!
Overall, I liked the Red Brick Warehouses, it’s a one-stop shop for quirky Japanese souvenirs tourist would enjoy. I also loved the 3000 yen traditional kimono outfit rental. The prices are not bad plus their “10-minute dress-up slogan” is pretty catchy for tourist in a hurry. Don’t forget to dine at Lucky Pierrot and Ajisai Ramen to complete your Hakodate experience! KANEMORI RED BRICK WAREHOUSE 14 – 12, Suehiro-cho , Hakodate City Telephone: 0138-27-5530 Website: www.hakodate-kanemori.com Live an Awesome Life,
Disclosure: Our experience was a project organized by the Hokkaido District Transport Bureau. I wrote this article with my biases, opinions, and insights. P.S. Here’s an English Map if you ever find yourself to need one. 🙂