Hakuba Valley is at the heart of the spectacular Japanese Alps and just 3hrs from downtown Tokyo. Host to the 1998 Winter Olympic Games, Hakuba is one of Japan’s largest and most renowned alpine resorts. The valley consists of 11 ski resorts, giving an incredible variety of alpine terrain, accommodating everyone from novice to expert. With this many ski resorts to choose from the slopes are relatively empty during the week and fresh tracks can be found for days. You’ll never be short of new areas to explore.
5hrs from Narita Airport
1,831m above sea level
11m annual snow fall
138 lifts, 5 gondolas
Terrain: ○ 30%,
□ 40%, ◇ 30%
Park & Pipe
December – April
Top 6 reasons to choose Hakuba
- 960 hectares of skiable terrain
- Lots of powder days and sunshine
- Great village atmosphere
- Wide variety of accommodation choices
- English speaking services
- Cultural experiences and activities
Most accommodations are situated at the base of Happo-One Mountain, in the Wadano Village. Alternatively many guests enjoy staying in Echoland, which is the main restaurant and bar area of the Hakuba Valley. There is a wide variety of accommodation available, including traditional family-run lodges, self-contained cottages and hotels with Japanese and western style bedding.
Getting to Hakuba
The four main resorts are:
The biggest resort in Hakuba with 26 lifts and over a 1,000m of vertical, the mountain offers everything from wide-open groomers, long cruising trails to steep, banked, powder filled lines. A great range of terrain to satisfy any intermediate / advanced rider and back country accessed from the top of the mountain.
Also family friendly with English speaking child-care and lessons.
Goryu – Hakuba 47 Combined Resorts
The combined Hakuba 47, Goryu-Toomi and Iimori is a diverse mountain range with something to offer everyone. The lower areas of Goryu and Iimori cater well for beginners with wide open runs and a good
The lower areas of Goryu and Iimori cater well for beginners with wide open runs and a good consistent slope. The upper mountain and Hakuba 47 provides steep challenging runs for the more intermediate and advanced. With north-west facing mountains, most of the area is unaffected by the sun, ensuring dry powder conditions. Hakuba 47 boasts the best terrain park and only super pipe in the area.
Iwatake is suited for beginners, families and intermediate skiers and boarders. The mountain has lots of wide open terrain, and some good challenging courses with steep pitches for more demanding skiers. Being able to access all faces of the mountain, means there is always good snow to be found.
Located at the northern end of the Valley, Cortina is often forgotten about. For those who are in the know, it’s considered to be Hakuba’s best kept secret! Although a small resort, Cortina receives the highest snowfall in the valley, boasting a huge open bowl. With frequent big snowfalls, it offers endless runs of untouched deep powder and challenging tree lines and chutes, for advanced skiers and boarders.
Lift Passes / Night Skiing
The Hakuba All Mountain lift pass offers access to all 11 resorts. Pass coupons are exchanged daily at your resort of choice. The Hakuba Alpen 3 pass is a combined discount pass covering three of the largest resorts Happo One, Iwatake and Tsuigaike. Night skiing is available until 10.00pm.
Though you can find some good steeps and nice tree skiing within the resort areas; off-piste terrain is mostly limited. There is extensive side and backcountry terrain which you will need to book a local guide (English speaking available) upon arriving to Hakuba.
English speaking ski and snowboard lessons are available through Hakuba Snowsports School. They offer both group and private lessons and a kid’s program. Group lessons commence from Hakuba Goryu Ski Resort and private lessons can be provided at any mountain in Hakuba Valley.
Pre-booked equipment rental is available with Central Snowsports through SkiJapan.com. They offer a comprehensive range of demo skis and boards for all snow conditions and high end skis for intermediate to advanced skiers.
Dining & Nightlife
Hakuba offers a wide variety of restaurants and has some fantastic après ski entertainment. Most hotels have a bar and lounge area, however if you are looking for something a little outside the box and a great cultural experience, head down to Echoland and the Happo area.