Soya Nature School (Nakatonbetsu Town)

Within easy walking distance of “Site of Pinneshiri Station“, you can get to “Soya Nature School“.
This facility rather than literal “school” was founded with re-using a schoolhouse of abolished elementary school in Nakatonbetsu Town on April 1st, 2008. Local people, government, NPO linked to establish this facility and then it has been run by them.
Not only canoe journey, snow trekking, but other numerous nature-friendly programs especially for children are offered. Unusual tours like panning experience in the river in the deep woods where used to be a locality of gold, or quest walking into “Nakatonbetsu calcareous cave“, the northernmost one in Japan are available.
Northern Hokkaido is not a destination in summer only!



Night sky over northern Hokkaido are too clear to see stars during the period from half to full moon. Moonlight is so strong that hides them. Appropriate words to express the beauty of star-studded sky around new moon period are hard to find, but I can say only “Come and see!”

You can see a 500 years old quercus crispula tree at the 4th entrance of the cave. This big tree has endured a rugged climate for over half millennium…

River Tonbetsu is a suitable stream for beginners at canoe.


Kraft experience that produces skin lotion or soap through the distillation of Nakatonbetsu-producted pines and honey may interest moms while their children are plyaing out…

In winter, visit the cave! “Hyoujun-Ice Bamboo” that is created slowly by piled (then freezed) droplets over time in sub-zero temperatute in the cave can be seen. One of “Hokkaidiatic” scenery.

Fat bike on snow or ski are also enjoyable. The landscape you see may be rough, but its cost is so kind for shoestring travellers!




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