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Hokkaido help in October

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We will be arriving in Sapporo on or about Oct 12. We will stay for 2 nights on points at the Sheraton Sapporo then rent a car from TooCoo and drive the next morning to Abashiri.

We plan to spend the night in Abashiri then drive to Utoro for two nights at the Hotel Shiretoko to explore the Shiretoko Peninsula.

We then drive to Lake Akan for 1 or 2 nights in a ryokan and explore Kusihiro(sp)marshlands, Lake Akan and environs

Then on to Sounkyo Onsen and 2 nights there probably at Soundkyo Grand Hotel and one night at Tennikyo Grand Hotel. Then back to Sapporo for one night and onward to Hakodate and the rest of our trip….

My questions:

I am reading that it is a 6 hour drive from Sapporo to Abashiri. Is this accurate?

Should I spend 1 or 2 nights in Lake Akan area? Is there enough there? Where do you recommend staying in this area?

Is Soundkyo Onsen area worth 3 nights?

How are the road conditions at this time of year?

Any suggestions and information about not to miss places along the way will be greatly appreciated.

Aloha!

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