AJT Logo

Hokkaido | Akan National Park

Akan International Crane Center

SHARE
View
Saved
Tours
View
Saved
Tours
Reserve
Tours
Search
Tours

Akan International Crane Center

The red-crowned crane, or tanchou, is such an important and rare a bird that it has its own recognized international center located in the city of Kushiro, Hokkaido. This bird is even said to be a harbinger of good luck in general Japanese beliefs, even the indigenous people of Hokkaido said that they were marsh gods of the land. At Akan International Crane Center, there is a museum displaying information about the ecosystem and the crane’s life, a crane sanctuary, a breeding center, and also a feeding ground.

At the beginning of 20th century, only about 40 cranes survived in the depths of the wetland. Extinction was only a matter of time. Then, in January of 1950, several cranes came to the cultivated field of Mr. Sadajiro Yamazaki in Kami-Akan. Mr. Yamazaki tried to feed them on his corn for cattle. The cranes ate the corn and began to visit his field in successive years. In 1952 when severe snow storms hit eastern Hokkaido, artificial feeding succeeded also at Hororo Elementary School in Tsurui. Many people have participated in feeding thereafter. Kami-Akan, where Mr. Yamazaaki lived and succeeded in feeding the cranes first, is now called "the home of artificial feeding." The farm fields near the town of akan are known as birthplace of the artificial feeding program for cranes and the area is well-known as a major wintering area for large flocks of cranes. Although the citizens of Akan have been involved in crane conservation for many decades, the Akan International Crane Center (AICC) is a new institution.

In the main building at AICC, through the use of audio- visuals and exhibits, the visitor learns about the biology of the tanchou. Captive cranes are maintained in semi- natural wetlands and visitors are able to observe cranes without disturbing wild cranes. The information is essential in developing sound conservation programs. The information and the results are shared with visitors through special lectures and workshops convened at AICC. Just north of the AICC is the Tancho Observation Center established in 1977. This annex is open from November through March and about 300 wild cranes can be observed. It is here that a farmer, Mr. Sadajiro Yamazaki, started feeding cranes in 1950.



Attraction Included Tours

×

Japan Deluxe Tours

Visit the must see sites of Japan with group sizes ranging from 12 to 35 people.

These tours are great for first time visitors to Japan looking for comfortable accommodation with all entrance fees and most meals included. Our Japan Deluxe Tours are accomodated with professional tour guides, fluent in both Japanese and English, to ensure an educational and valuable visit. Air-conditoned, private coaches are also included, so you can enjoy a comfortable and hassle-free time in Japan. Our tours range from 7 to 21 days, to various regions of Japan.

Deluxe-Plus Small Group Tours

Experience the culture of Japan at a slower pace with groups of 10 to 18 people.
(Smaller group departure available)

These tours combine enrichment, enjoyment, and education with time to truly absorb and appreciate your surroundings. Our Deluxe-Plus small group tours are created to cater to those who are interested in having a deeper understanding of Japan's culture. You will have the opportunity to participate in culturally rich activities and visit destinations only locals may know. Experience luxurious hotels and travel at a leisurely pace when you book a Deluxe-Plus small group tour.

Ultra-Deluxe Small Group Tours

Tour Japan with the finest accommodations and experiences in groups of 2 to 6 people.

Enjoy more than just sightseeing. These tours will allow you to eat in small local restaurants, visit hidden gems, stay at hotels with limited occupancy, take part in activities available only to small groups, and enjoy more interaction with your tour guides. Ultra-Deluxe small group tours are the ultimate way to visit Japan with hand-picked, top hotels and ryokans (traditional inns) to relax in. Select from a unique range of luxurious cultural experiences that are limited to smaller groups, which is why the maximum group size is 6 guests.

Japan Walking Tours

Travel Japan more flexibly in groups of 10 to 16 people using public transportation.

These tours allow you to enjoy Japanese culture firsthand in the intimacy of a small group. The maximum group size is 12 guests, which enables you to travel by public transportation, such as by train, subway, taxi, ferry or local bus. Walking the streets and taking the local trains will allow you to interact more with the locals and appreciate what everyday life in Japan is like. Each city will feature an expert local guide who will be able to share in-depth information on the featured attractions and sites, and provide assistance or recommendations if needed prior to your free time.

Charms of Hokkaido Tour: Hokkaido Winter Festivals 
2020 - 2/3

Group Tour | Luxury        

Charms of Hokkaido Tour: Hokkaido Winter Festivals 2020 - 2/3

9 Days 8 Nights | from US $3398.00

Chitose / Biratori / Lake Shikotsu / Sapporo / Otaru / Asahikawa / Sounkyo / Abashiri / Lake Tofutsu / Akan National Park / Kushiro
See the Sapporo Snow Festival, as well as three other main Winter Festivals in Hokkaido.
Start Date End Date Twin/Triple Start City End City Style Compare Status
Mon. Feb 3, 2020 Tue. Feb 11, 2020 US $3398.00 Sapporo Kushiro Luxury Save this tour Book Now  
Sun. Feb 7, 2021 Mon. Feb 15, 2021 US $3398.00 Sapporo Kushiro Luxury Save this tour Book Now  
Best of Honshu & Hokkaido: Snow Monkeys & Hokkaido 
Winter Festival Tour 2020 - 1/27

Group Tour | Luxury        

Best of Honshu & Hokkaido: Snow Monkeys & Hokkaido Winter Festival Tour 2020 - 1/27

16 Days 15 Nights | from US $5698.00

Honshu (Tokyo / Lake Kawaguchi / Matsumoto / Yudanaka / Takayama / Shirakawa-go / Kanazawa / Kyoto / Nara / Osaka), Hokkaido (Chitose / Biratori / Lake Shikotsu / Sapporo / Otaru / Asahikawa / Sounkyo / Abashiri / Lake Tofutsu / Akan National Park / Kushiro)
Explore the two main winter attractions of Japan - Snow Monkeys and Hokkaido Winter Festivals.
Start Date End Date Twin/Triple Start City End City Style Compare Status
Mon. Jan 27, 2020 Tue. Feb 11, 2020 US $5698.00 Tokyo Kushiro Luxury Save this tour Book Now  
Sun. Jan 31, 2021 Mon. Feb 15, 2021 US $5698.00 Tokyo Kushiro Luxury Save this tour Book Now  
Charms of Hokkaido Tour: Summer Flowers in Hokkaido  
2020 - 7/15

Group Tour | Luxury        

Charms of Hokkaido Tour: Summer Flowers in Hokkaido 2020 - 7/15

9 Days 8 Nights | from US $3398.00

Furano / Biei / Sounkyo / Abashiri / Shiretoko / Kushiro / Biratori / Noboribetsu / Lake Toya / Otaru / Sapporo
Explore Hokkaido in summer flower season; featuring Natural World Heritage sites, nature, gourmet, culture, and rural villages.
Start Date End Date Twin/Triple Start City End City Style Compare Status
Wed. Jul 15, 2020 Thu. Jul 23, 2020 US $3398.00 Sapporo Sapporo Luxury Save this tour Book Now  
Sun. Jul 18, 2021 Mon. Jul 26, 2021 US $3398.00 Sapporo Sapporo Luxury Save this tour Book Now  
Best of Hokkaido & Honshu: Summer Flowers 2021 - 7/18

Group Tour | Luxury        

Best of Hokkaido & Honshu: Summer Flowers 2021 - 7/18

15 Days 14 Nights | from US $5398.00

Hokkaido (Furano / Biei / Sounkyo / Abashiri / Shiretoko / Kushiro / Biratori / Noboribetsu / Lake Toya / Otaru / Sapporo), Honshu (Osaka / Nara / Kyoto / Koka / Hakone / Mt Fuji / Tokyo)
Exploring Japan's two main islands: Hokkaido & Honshu.
Start Date End Date Twin/Triple Start City End City Style Compare Status
Sun. Jul 18, 2021 Sun. Aug 1, 2021 US $5398.00 Sapporo Tokyo Luxury Save this tour Book Now