The Unkai Terrace in Hokkaido Brings You Closer to the Clouds

This Scenic Viewing Terrace in Hokkaido Brings You Closer to a Floating Sea of Clouds 

Drink in heavenly views from this observation deck, which offers a glass-encased cafe and a cloud-shaped hammock.

Known for its natural hot springs, flower fields, and ski slopes, Japan’s northernmost island, Hokkaido, has a new attraction that’s worth travelling for. If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to walk above the clouds, so close that you can almost touch them, the Unkai Terrace brings you one step closer to that reality. This observation deck features a three-storey building with a cantilevered deck, where visitors can witness the heavenly sight of a “sea of clouds” known as unkai

Also read: 17 Unique Experiences to Add to Your Hokkaido Itinerary

Float above a sea of clouds at the Unkai Terrace in Hokkaido 

Main observation deck at Unkai Terrace

Main observation deck at Unkai Terrace | Image credit: Hoshino Resorts Tomamu Official Website

Towering at an altitude of 1,088m above sea level, the newly renovated Unkai Terrace allows visitors to take in the ever-changing scenery of Hokkaido’s skies over the Hidaka Mountains. The terrace can be accessed by taking a cable car from the Hoshino Resorts Tomamu, a large resort in the Yufutsu District of Shimukappu Village that’s perfect for skiing, snowboarding, and other winter activities. 

Beyond the main observation deck of Unkai Terrace, a cloud-inspired theme prevails throughout the facility. From an indoor cafe to a giant hammock designed to look just like a cloud, visitors can enjoy spectacular vistas from seven different viewing spots: the Cloud WalkSky WedgeContour Bench, Cloud PoolCloud BedCloud Bar, and Cloud Cafe

One incredibly popular highlight of the facility is the Cloud Walk, a cloud-shaped observation deck with the structure of a suspension bridge. True to its name, it makes visitors feel as if they are treading on the clouds or floating in the air. 

Equally noteworthy is the Sky Wedge, which is located a little way up the stairs of the Cloud Walk and protrudes into the clouds like the bow of a ship. 

Another viewing spot that shouldn’t be missed is the Cloud Pool, which resembles a giant cloud-shaped hammock overlooking the mountains. Up to 10 visitors can linger at this observation spot while gazing at the soft white clouds and swirling mist below — yet another unique vantage point that lets you admire the natural beauty of Hokkaido. 

Enjoy cloud-inspired treats at the Cloud Cafe at Unkai Terrace

Cloud Cafe at Unkai Terrace

Cloud Cafe | Image credit: Hoshino Resorts Tomamu Official Website

Occasionally, there are days when the weather is not so favourable and the fog surrounding the Unkai Terrace can take some time to clear. As you wait for the clouds to appear, you can opt to pass the time inside the glass-covered Cloud Cafe. 

Not only does this coffee shop surround you with sweeping views of the mountains, but it also offers adorable cloud-themed desserts and drinks on the menu, from “Cloud Macaroons” to “Unkai Coffee” served with soft and fluffy marshmallows. 

How to plan your visit to Unkai Terrace

Unkai Terrace, Observation Deck Floating Above a Sea of Clouds in Hokkaido

Unkai Terrace | Image credit: Hoshino Resorts Tomamu Official Website

The Unkai Terrace is open to visitors annually from mid-May to mid-Oct with an entrance fee of ¥1,900 for adults and ¥1,200 for elementary students.

From Hoshino Resorts Tomamu, you can reach the sky-high terrace by taking a 13-minute gondola ride that operates from 4.30am to 7am daily. To enjoy the clearest views of the clouds, always make sure to check the weather forecast and arrive at the terrace early for your visit. 

Unkai Terrace | Image credit: Hoshino Resorts Tomamu Official Instagram Page 

For more information, visit Hoshino Resorts Tomamu’s official website here. 

Address: Hoshino Resorts Tomamu, Nakatomamu, Shimukappu, Yufutsu District, Hokkaido 079-2204, Japan

About Author

Tiffany Conde
Tiffany Conde

Tiffany wrote articles on travel, food, and pop culture for TripZilla. As she plans her next adventure, she enjoys writing about the coolest places to stay around the world and where to find them.