Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Satoland... A Rural Experience

4th July, 2010 - Now once again, I have to admit to being decidedly absent during this part of the trip, so these photos are care of my beautiful (though mysterious) wife, T-chan. Anyway today T-chan and L-kun went to a place called Satoland, just to the northeast of the city. Actually, it's really called something like Sapporo Facility of Agricultural Experience and Interchange... although that doesn't perhaps sound as fun as Satoland!

View Sapporo Map in a larger map

Satoland is one of those Japanese type amusement parks that I just couldn't see working well in say Australia. It's all about getting closer to agriculture, and food production... mixed in with lots of family-centred fun. Actually, many people may be more familiar with Satoland during it's winter stage when it's often been the site of part of the Snow Festival (with lots of slides and fun snowy things to do). That is definitely it's off-season face however.

Today T-chan and L-kun were joined by T-chan's best friend, T2-chan, and her sister and nieces... although I think that always makes people sound too old (like and japanese obasan.... hehehe). Anyhow, her nieces were very good with L-kun and looked after him very well. The bike ride looks like it was a great time, and I have to say I've never seen a bike quite like this one. Not sure where #4 goes however.

There's lots of fun things to do, and with 74ha of space, open air is something that the kids get to enjoy.

And of course, it wouldn't be a Japanese park without a good roller-slide, now would it...

Arigatou T2-chan and family for sharing your day with ours. L-kun had a great time, and I think he took a shine to being surrounded by a group of adoring women. Oh, I know it might sound fun for a young man... but the magic disappears quickly when the day out tranforms to a day out shopping (and eventually dropping). Still, these are lessons yet to be learnt, young apprentice... For the moment, enjoy the magic.

Actually, apart from the fun stuff, there is also a strong (experiential) education program in place for children and adults to see first hand how some products are made (such as butter, sausages and icecream... hmmm... not sure about the first two, but the third sounds fun). The park also includes allotments that can be used for growing vegetables. I guess this is not a bad idea for a society where a lot of people live in small high-rise apartments and yet would like the opportunity to grow their own food.

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