How to Get to Tobetsu Trappist Monastery, Trappist Butter and Cookies make for great souvenirs.

You can purchase Trappist butter, Trappist candies, and Trappist cookies made at the monastery from the on-site shop. These products have been famous for many years and are a specialty of the area.

There is also original soft-serve ice cream available, which is perfect for a hot day. Instead of a spoon, it’s served with a cookie.

The Trappist Monastery is located in the Oshima Toubetsu area of Hokuto city.

To get there by car, take the mountain road from the main highway. Soon, you will find yourself on a straight road leading up the mountain, at the end of which you will see the large monastery.

There are signs requesting tourists not to enter the tree-lined avenue in front of the monastery. Instead, turn left and follow the signs to take a detour. This is to preserve the scenic beauty of the avenue.

In about five minutes, you will arrive at the parking lot of the tourist shop at the entrance to the monastery. Unfortunately, you cannot tour the inside of the monastery.

However, the Tosebetsu Church, located next to the shop within the monastery grounds, holds Mass every Sunday at 8:45 AM. Everyone is welcome to attend. The Mass is officiated by the monastery’s priests and has the same atmosphere as the Masses conducted by the monks inside the monastery.

You can experience the Trappist tradition of worship. According to the Trappist Monastery’s website, if you are interested in receiving Catholic baptism, you can consult with the priest after the Mass.

Lourdes Grotto

Additionally, there is another parking lot a bit further up the hill from the shop. From there, you can park your car and walk up a path that leads to an open meadow. Beyond the meadow, there is a cemetery. Continuing past the cemetery and further up the hill, you will find the Lourdes Grotto.

The grotto is a 30-minute walk from the front of the monastery and also serves as a viewing platform.

The “Lourdes Grotto” in France is a globally renowned Catholic pilgrimage site. Similarly, a Lourdes Grotto has been created on Maruyama, behind the Trappist Monastery.

In the spring of 1910, Father Gérard Pourrié got lost in the deep snow of the back mountain but fortunately survived. While recovering, he planned the construction of the Lourdes Grotto on the back mountain, which was completed the following year.

In 1989, due to weathering and falling rocks, the original Lourdes Grotto became hazardous and irreparable. As a result, a new grotto was created about 200 meters closer to the monastery.