Furano is situated along the middle reaches of the Sorachi River in the central part of Hokkaido and it belongs to Furano-Ashibetsu Nature Park.
Because of its geographical position, which is almost right in the middle of Hokkaido, Furano has a unique nickname – “the navel town.” Every summer, a humorous navel festival is held in Furano, during which about 3,000 participants draw funny faces on their bellies and dance around in the main street.
Furano’s natural beauty can be appreciated throughout the seasons of the year – beautiful stardust in the winter sky, charming ‘mizubasho,’ Japanese skunk cabbage flowers along the roadside in spring, the inviting fragrance of lavender in summer, and the gloriously red and yellow tinted leaves in fall. The name “Furano” actually originates from the Ainu (an ethnic group indigenous to Hokkaido) word ‘furanui’ – meaning fragrant flame. Furano created the Furano Lavender-no-Mori lavender field to commemorate the 80th anniversary of its municipal government. Many people visit the lavender field in summer when the lavender bloom is at its best. Taking a stroll along the path through the forest of sweetly scented lavender is really a must when you visit Furano in summer.
You can also enjoy outdoor activities in Furano all year round. Rafting trips down the Sorachi River and hot-air balloon flights are organized by the Alpine Visitor Center, and the nearby Kita-no-Mine is a popular ski resort in winter.
[Air] 1h 35 min from Haneda to Asahikawa Airport/2h 5 min from Chubu Centrair International Airport to Asahikawa Airport, and 1h from the airport to Furano Station by bus.