The limited express Hokuto runs between Hakodate and Sapporo. This train connects to the Hokkaido Shinkansen at Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto. So if you move from Tokyo to Sapporo, take the Tohoku-Hokkaido Shinkansen and transfer to this train for Sapporo at Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto station. Japan Rail Pass covers all these trains from Tokyo to Sapporo.
Route, schedule and trip time
The Hokuto runs more than 10 trips a day. It takes 3 hours 10 minutes by the fastest Hokuto between Sapporo and Hakodate.
You can find the timetable in the link below:
Due to COVID-19, it may be operated on a schedule different from the normal timetable. Check the train schedule on Hyperdia.
Hyperdia perfect guide, train timetable and route search engine
I traveled from Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto to Sapporo by this train. Please find my trip report in my Youtube channel:
But the trip between Sapporo and Tokyo is quite long trip. Please refer the link below to learn more:
Seat and facilities
The limitede express Hokuto operates on KIHA-261 or 283 series. The seat layout on Ordinary car is 2+2 and Green seat is 2+1. These two fleets are very similar. The biggest difference is a material of the seat on Green car. 283 series has ordinary fablic seats and 261 series has leather seats.
*Sonic Rail Garden has copyright for all images of accommodations below.
Train formation by 281 series
*Some more cars are added in the peak season.
Train formation (261 series)
Images – KIHA-281 series
Images – KIHA-261 series