Photo: Pakutaso

Japanese survey ranks Hokkaido as most desirable prefecture to settle down in

By Shannon, SoraNews24

Though the bustling, metropolitan cities of Tokyo, Osaka, Fukuoka, and more offer an attractively active lifestyle for young people trying to build a career, many Japanese people think differently when it comes to settling down.

For the second year in a row, Japan’s northern region of Hokkaido was ranked as the most desirable prefecture to settle down in. 84.9 percent of respondents to the Japanese Prefectural SDGs Survey 2020 picked the snowy region as their top spot, followed closely by tropical Okinawa. Fukuoka, Ishikawa, and Osaka rounding out the top five.

Hokkaido has a ton to offer in terms of food, travel, nature, and more (squirrel hotpot, anyone?). Though there are a few densely populated cities like Sapporo, Japan’s largest prefecture has a ton of natural wonders to offer.

On the flip side, you may hear a lot of Japanese people talking about how cold it is–cold enough to create an entire frozen village during the winter months–and the amount of annual snowfall this northern region accumulates. Apparently, though, that wasn’t enough to stop people from wanting to settle down there! Here’s what netizens had to say when they heard the results of the survey:

“Haha, it’d be impossible for me with all of the snow.”

“Hokkaido is like some wintry hell, though! Heating costs are crazy. It’s not a place where people can live.”

“If you live in an apartment complex, you don’t need to worry about snow removal. You do need to have some good driving skills, though…”

“It wouldn’t be so hard to live in Sapporo. I wonder how Uber Eats does there, though…”

Since Hokkaido is so spread out and it snows so much, you’ll have to be used to driving in order to survive there – that is, unless you live in a place like Sapporo, where they have a pretty awesome public transportation system.

More surprising findings, when compared to last year’s results, were the ranking of Japan’s eastern Kanto region. Likely due to the spread and reaction to coronavirus, Tokyo fell a whopping 29 spots from 4th place to 33rd place. Bordering Kanagawa, Chiba, and Saitama prefectures all fell at least 10 spots as well.

On the bright side, this shift gives Japan’s more rural regions a chance to shine. Shimane prefecture jumped from 43rd place all the way up to 11th place, for example, and Toyama made a similar climb. According to another survey, people from Shimane are pretty friendly!

It doesn’t look like Hokkaido’s top spot is budging anytime soon despite naysayers.

Sources: Livedoor News via Otakomu

Read more stories from SoraNews24.

-- Survey ranks Japanese prefectures by how much people want to continue living there

-- Online survey sheds light on prefectural personality rankings of Japanese people

-- What’s the top country people want to visit after the pandemic? Japan, survey says

© SoraNews24

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

Login to comment

Too cold for too long. Best suited for bears and salmon, not humans!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I have lived in places colder than Hokkaido so cold does not particularly bother me , but even so, I would never pick it as the number one prefecture to settle down in.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Sponsored by the Hokkaido Tourist Board and serviced by Dentsu, this survey ?

Nice place for a holiday. To live only if you have Robinson Crusoe aspirations

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Been living in Sapporo since 2013. If you are lucky enough to find a good job here and actually match well with the outdoors stuff, this place is just perfect. In all fairness this only applies to Sapporo. Live in any other city in Hokkaido and you are getting into "there is absolute nothing to do there" territory.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

With the Internet and online shopping, the last twenty years or so have been a great time to live in inaka. You're not cut off from anything any more.

Hokkaido has a lot going for it, especially if you are not on local wages. It's cold, but you get a cooler summer with no rainy season. For full Hokkaido points, clear air, the sounds of nature etc., I wouldn't choose Sapporo.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

That picture is of Mt. Yotei in Abuta near Niseko. Not only is it an active stratovolcano which could erupt at any time, the real estate prices in this area are some of the most expensive in all of Japan. I think I'll build my dream retirement home somewhere else.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Anyone know anything about visiting and/or living in Wakkanai, Hokkaido, Japan?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

With ongoing global warming, look for a lot of Japanese to move north.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I live in New Zealand. Hokkaido is very similar to my country.

On a visit to Japan I travelled North to Wakkanai. Wakkanai is located at Latitude 45deg North

Where I live is 45deg South.

For me Hokkaido is a wonderful place. Two things to know about.

One is a movie called "Antarctica" a very emotional movie about Japans first Antarctic base, called Showa Base.

The story mostly is about the sled dogs which come from Northern Hokkaido, Taro & Jiro are the hero dogs.

Two. If you want to do something EXTREME, Then travel to Cape Soya, the most Northern part of Hokkaido

for a New Years Party at the worlds most NORTHERN BUS STOP. It might be Neg 20deg below zero, in a blizzard, but what a blast..

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Retire in Hokkaido, but spend the cold months in SE Asia.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Apart from Sapporo, every where else is just plain boring. But some people enjoy this kind of life

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites