Favorite Ski Destination in Japan: Hakuba, Nagano!
Don’t forget to visit Hakuba, one of the best ski spots in Japan, which is located in Nagano! Hakuba is famous for its high quality of powder snow and ski course. This article will give you an ultimate explanation about Hakuba and the reasons why you should choose Hakuba as one of your ski destinations!
Why should you choose Hakuba?
These are the main reasons why you should choose Hakuba as your favorite ski destination:
1. Huge ski terrains (960 hectares)
2. Sunny and clear days with tons of snow powder
3. Great village atmosphere with plenty choices of accommodations
4. Tourist friendly environment with services provided in English
5. Enjoyable cultural experiences and other winter activities are available as well
What Hakuba Offers
There are 10 ski resorts in Hakuba Valley, which are: Happo-One, Hakuba 47, Goryu, Iwatake, Cortina, Sanosaka, Norikura, Jiigatake, Kashimayari, Tsugaike Kogen and Yanaba Snow Park. Among these resorts, the main resorts are Happo-One, Goryu & Hakuba 47, Iwatake, and Cortina.
Happo-One is the biggest resort in Hakuba, equipped with 26 lifts and with a mountain with 1,000 meters height offering everything that you want for your ski course, from wide-open groomers, long cruising trails to steep, banked, and powder filled lines. Happo-One is a good place that has top-notch terrains suitable for intermediate to advanced rider and skier. The resort is also family friendly, providing the English-speaking ski lessons and child-care services.
Goryu & Hakuba 47 is a combined resort offering you diverse mountain range for skier and rider. The lower areas of Goryu and Iimori, which have wide open runs and a good consistent slope are good for beginners. The upper mountains and Hakuba 47, which have more challenging steeper runs are good for intermediate to advanced riders and skiers. Hakuba 47 is famous for its top-notch terrain parks and super pipes, and also famous for its dry snow powder.
Iwatake is a great resort equipped with wide open terrains, challenging courses with steep pitches, and flexible access to the mountains is suitable for beginners, families, and intermediate skiers and boarders.
Cortina is often forgotten as it is located at the Northern end of the Valley, making Cortina is famous as Hakuba’s hidden gems! Compare to the other three resorts, Cortina is a small resort with highest snowfall in the valley. Cortina is perfect for advance skiers and boarders, as they can challenge themselves by diving in to the huge bowls, endless runs of untouched deep powder, and challenging tree lines and chutes.
If you are visiting Hakuba this year, don’t forget to purchase the Hakuba All Mountain lift pass to obtain the access to all 11 resorts. You can also purchase The Hakuba Alpen 3 pass as well, which will give you the access to the three resorts: Happo-One, Iwatake, and Tsuigaike.
You can also enjoy night skiing, which is available everyday until 22:00. You can also enjoy off-piste skiing at the backcountry terrain, but you have to book the activity (English speaking tour guide is included) upon your arrival in Hakuba.
Ski and snowboard lessons provided by English speaking professional instructors are also available through Hakuba Snowsports School. The lessons are offered in form of group or private lessons, and kids programs are available as well. You can take the group lessons at Hakuba Goryu Ski Resort and private lessons at any mountain in Hakuba Valley. Hakuba is one of the most famous ski resorts in Japan, so we suggest you to pre-book your equipment with your tour.
For dining and nightlife, Hakuba offers many options for restaurants and bars. You can also enjoy authentic cultural experience at Echoland and Happo area if you want to. You can take the shuttles to reach most of the resorts in Hakuba, as most hotels offer complimentary shuttle services to the closest ski resorts. You can also take the free shuttle services that run between Hakuba Valley Resorts and Hakuba Town, or you can take the local bus line or the night shuttle bus to reach Hakuba’s famous dining and nightlife spots.
How To Reach Hakuba
Hakuba is located within 5 hour drive from Narita Airport and 3 hour drive from downtown Tokyo. You can take the express train from Shinjuku station or the limited express bus from Nagano station as well.