The beauty of having a car while in Niseko.

For purveyors of fine whiskey or those who want a day off the slopes and to explore a bit, a visit to Yoichi and the Nikka distillery is great and short drive. Grab a designated driver and make the drive to the small seaside town of Yoichi only about 50 minutes from Kutchan on route 5; the drive itself is interesting too, over a mountain pass with a tunnel at the top.

Once in Yoichi, the Nikka Distillery is easy to find, just turn left at the traffic lights in the centre of town, if you turn right you will find the Yoichi train station. Just after you turn left the distillery is right in front of you, an old stone building that looks like a place where you would make some sort of alcohol, funnily enough.

yoichi nikka whiskey distillery in winterbetter than skiing?

Nikka whiskey has an interesting history, its techniques come from true Scotch Whiskey, so it is the the real mccoy. As already mentioned remember to bring a designated driver as at the end you can have a free shot and then purchase more if you so wish, at 65% though you are pretty much drunk just smelling it and the barman will stop you after 3 or 4. All the whiskey you can purchase to take home so bring some cash.

There is a great little seafood market on the main street too so you could always pick up some of Hokkaido's delicious seafood for a feast when you get back to your Niseko accommodation and if you check the train station you will find other things to do such as the Space Apple or even just standing on a snowy beach is something to put on the list.

hokkaido seafoodSeafood at its best

If you still feel like a few runs you could always drop in to Niki city ski field a small chair and slope that we have never ridden, could be good for a couple of runs to stretch out those weary legs ,at the same time not being to strenuous and and not really more that a few hours by the looks from the road, maybe if you know leave us comment. Niki is the small town this side of Yoichi when coming from Niseko.

Nikka Whiskey Yoichi in summerBeautifully executed grounds and buildings, this in itself is worth the visit

inside Nikka Yoichiinside is as interesting as the outside and it's warm!