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[Hakodate] Kanemori red bricks warehouse and European architecture in Hakodate Motomachi (函館元町)


My flight boarding time from Hakodate airport was 5 p.m. So, I walked around Hakodate Motomachi area so that I could get to the airport in time. I was anxious about such a tight schedule, but unexpectedly I enjoyed the last sightseeing.

I think half a day is enough to walk around Motomachi area because many European architecture and churches don’t allow tourists to enter. Actually, I was there from 10 a.m.to 2:30 p.m. (including lunchtime)

I got off at Suehirocho station of Hakodate city car. And I started to taking a walk from Hakodate Nishi wharf. At first, I walked to Kanemori Red Brick Warehouse having word “森”.

Blue moon that stop at the wharf is sightseeing boat. 30 minutes cruise cost us 1800 yen. I gave up it because it took much time to next boarding time. I didn’t have such a time.

Kanemori Red Bricks Warehouse

Kanemori Red Bricks Warehouse (金森赤レンガ倉庫エリア) is the most outstanding sightseeing spot in Hakodate. There’re many places having red bricks warehouse in Japan, and this Motomachi area, too. Nice view.

Warehouses are old and there are some cracks. But of course, there’s no problem about those earthquake-proof and another safety because those were repaired. There’re shops and restaurants inside those warehouses.

Lucky Pierrot (Bay area head shop) is attached to this view !

Hakodate Rusama-ya Sweets serves Shiroi Koibito soft serve. But unfortunately, I couldn’t eat it because the machine was out of order that time.

Former Hakodate post office

Former Hakodate post office (旧函館郵便局者) was built in 1911. It is one of the precious modern building built in Meiji period. Now it is shopping mall named “Hakodate Meiji-kan (はこだて明治館)” after renovated. There’s music boxes shop, Teddy Bear museum and so on.

Oldest concrete telegraph pole in Japan

This is the oldest concrete telegraph pole in Japan. It was built in 1923. Now it still work !

Almost all telegraph poles in Japan are round column shaped, but this is pyramid shaped one. I heard it was very rare even at that time.

Motomachi Catholic Church

After that, I walked to the area having European architectures.

At first, Motomachi Catholic Church (カトリック元町教会). It was built by French missionary in 1859. There is a central altar and wall statue given by Pope Benedict XV inside the church, but this architecture is now used as kindergarten. So tourist can’t enter the site.

This Motomachi Catholic Church, Hakodate St.John’s church and Hakodate Orthodox Church gather each other, so, I could visit all churches quickly.

Hakodate St.John’s church

This is rather new church compared with another churches. Hakodate St.John’s church (函館聖ヨハネ教会) was built in 1979. It’s small church.

At first, it was wooden architecture. And sometimes it was suffer from fire.It’s strange shape ? Yes. If you see this church from the top, you can see cross “+”. I heard this was the modern European church in that time. We can’t enter this church, too.

Hakodate Orthodox Church

Hakodate Orthodox Church (函館ハリストス正教会) was built as Russian consulate-affiliated church in 1859.Russian-Byzantine style architecture.

People can enter into the church. They want 300 yen as donation (They don’t allow us to take picture inside the church). It is a small church. There’s solemn atmosphere.

St. John’s Church Hakodate can be seen from the site.

Ōtani Hongan-ji Hakodate Betsu-in

By the way, I heard there’s Higashi Hongan-ji Betsu-in temple (大谷本願寺函館別院) in such an area. So, I went toward there. Actually, there’s a temple ! It was built in 1709. Now official name is Otani Hongan-ji Hakodate Betsu-in. Betsu-in (別院) means, in short, branch of temple. This is the oldest reinforced concrete temple in Japan.

Hachimanzaka slope

After that, I dropped in at some slopes on my way to Old Russian Consulate. At first, the most popular slope in Hakodate. Hachimanzaka slope (八幡坂). It is shown several times in Love Live Sunshine. There were many people at the top of the slop to take a photo.

I didn’t know anything about Love Live, so I didn’t feel something…

Yayoizaka slope

I liked this slope. Yayoizaka slope (弥生坂). There’s Hakodate Nishi Police Station at the bottom of the slope. It’s very nice.

Sugatamizaka slope

Sugatamizaka slope (姿見坂) have clear view.

There’s snow disposal yard close to the slope. There was no snow, but I was surprised at such an existence. Here’s snow district ! There was no people who took such a photo except me :p

Old Russian Consulate

Old Russian consulate (旧ロシア領事館) is far from another European architectures and it is located on the way to uphill. I thought to give up again and again, but I wanted to see it best in all architectures in Motomachi area. So, I did ! This is the architecture. At first, Russian consulate was built in the site of Hakodate Orthodox church, but they were suffer from spreading fire of their neighborhood British consulate. Then Russian consulate moved to this lcoation.

It was used as USSR consulate from 1925 to 1944. Then it was closed. Now it is like ruins.

It seems to be minimum preserved. I hope it is open to the public as museum.

By the way, this is the steep slope that I walked up to there.

If you want to go directly to Russian consulate, Dotsuku-mae station and Omachi station of Hakodate city car is the closest. Buses are available until Omachi station after all. (There’s no choice but walk this steep slope)

Old British Consulate

After I saw Old Russia Consulate, I dropped in at Old British Consulate (旧イギリス領事館) on my way to Kanamori red bricks warehouse for lunch. Now this is open to the public as museum.

Museum is required admission fee (adult – 300 yen), but cafe and museum shop is available without admission fee.

There’s small garden. Roses are bloom in Spring and Autumn.

Motoizaka slope

Motoizaka slope (基坂) along Old British Consulate. It’s beautiful view.

Back to the red bricks warehouses

After that I went back to this area and had lunch. If I gave up going to Russian Conslate and walked along all slopes, I could shopping and having tea slowly.

Squid manhole. Walking around Motomachi was really fun. But there are many slopes, so you ‘d better go there with shoes that are easy to walk in 🙂

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