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skiing in japan Archives - SkiJapan.com

How to get to Hakuba

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With good snowfall, a wide variety of ski resorts and long ski runs, Hakuba is one of the most popular winter destinations in Japan. Being located just 3 hours from downtown Tokyo makes it a great place to visit for snow travellers. The best options for Hakuba transport are by private taxi, shuttle bus, bullet train, or direct train.

Private Taxi

Duration: Approx 4.5 to 6 hours depending on traffic

A private taxi is the most convenient method of Hakuba transport with great flexibility to meet you whenever your flight arrives at Tokyo airport. It might sound expensive, but in a large group, it can work out to be reasonable. Prices are around ¥15,780 per person one way (at the time of writing) in the most economical scenario.

Shuttle Bus

Duration: Approx. 6 hours

Shuttle busses frequently operate from both Tokyo airports to Hakuba ski resorts and can be quite convenient if you have ski bags and luggage. If your flight lines up with a shuttle bus schedule, then this could be a great option if you don’t want to organise a private taxi. Cost of the shuttle bus is from around ¥9,900 per person one way at the time of writing and must be booked well in advance.

Shinkansen

Duration: Approx. 2.5 hours

A little bit more complicated, but certainly the fastest method is to get the Shinkansen (bullet train). From either Haneda or Narita, you need to make your way to Tokyo train station in the heart of the city (often a train is the best option), then get on the Hokuriku Shinkansen to Nagano. At Nagano train station follow the signs to the bus terminal, and find stop number 26 and buy a ticket to Happo bus terminal in Hakuba. The total cost is around ¥12,600 per person one way.

Getting to your Hotel

Once you arrive, most Hakuba accommodation providers will be able to pick you up, but make sure to ask in advance. SkiJapan.com consultants can arrange everything for you, and if you’re staying at the Hakuba Gateway Hotel or the Grand Phenix Hakuba, a SkiJapan.com van and rep will be there waiting for you.

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Mad Dog Jam 2019 – Niseko’s Premiere Spring Park Event

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The third annual Mad Dog Jam was recently held in legendary Niseko, and was a success with a huge turnout and great conditions. This fun, community event is always a great time, with beats played by local DJ’s, and local Hokkaidog hotdogs all on offer.

This event is just one of many reasons to visit Japan in spring, so contact our team of experts to book your trip.

Check out our gallery of pics from this fantastic event.

 

 

 

Walk through the Hakuba Gateway Hotel

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The Hakuba Gateway Hotel is an affordable hotel located in Hakuba that’s a quick five-minute walk to Happo One lifts and is right next to restaurants, resort shuttles and public buses. The hotel has 18 comfortable rooms which all include kitchenettes, wi-fi, lockers and free laundry services. All guests staying in the hotel also receive complimentary breakfast each morning, and as of the 2019/20, FREE ski and snowboard rental from NBS Hakuba on the ground floor of the hotel. The hotel is also located just a few minutes’ walk from the new Hakuba accommodation Grand Phenix Hakuba.

Rooms

Each room features two large beds, making for a very comfortable stay for two people. The rooms also have an additional fold out couch suitable for kids – should the need arise.

All rooms in the hotel are identical and face the Happo-One slopes which are just a short walk away.

Tours

The hotel’s reception is also a tour desk, so visitors to the area can book an extensive range of tours and activities directly at the hotel’s reception. Recommended tours in the area are the Nagano Snow Monkey Tour (run by Sanroku Tours), and a visit to Matsumoto Castle.

Rental & Retail

NBS is one of the most recognised and experienced snowsports & rental shops from Hokkaido, where they already have three established locations. For personal service and a huge range of skis all visitors to the area can now get Hakuba ski rental at NBS Hakuba. NBS Hakuba also retails goggles, gloves and outerwear, while upstairs there’s local retailer “G-Rally” stocking a range of outdoor products. For the 2019/20 season, every guest of the hotel will receive FREE rental during their stay at NBS Hakuba.

Physiotherapist & Massage

The hotel also hosts Altitude Physiotherapy; Australia’s leading snowsports focused physiotherapist. The Altitude team is led by Winter Olympic physiotherapist Peter Caine who brings more than 20 years’ experience in the snowsports industry. Peter and the team have worked with countless elite athletes to get them back on the snow quickly and safely. Altitude’s services include general physiotherapy, massage and consultation to help manage and prevent sports injuries.

 

Harvest Café

The comfortable and warm Harvest Café is the place to go for amazing wood-fired pizzas and a range of a la carte dishes. This is a great place to hang out after a long day on the slopes while eating some of the best pizza in the area.

The Gateway to Hakuba

The once humble hotel is now undoubtedly a real hub for visitors to the area with tonnes of services all under one roof. Book your dream holiday and stay in the most central hotel in Hakuba with SkiJapan.com.

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Guide to multi-resort passes in Japan

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Epic Pass

One of the world’s biggest multi resort passes is the Epic Pass with offers at 69 resorts worldwide including two of Japans biggest resorts – Hakuba Valley and Rusutsu. Holders of the Epic Pass can receive one 5 Day lift pass at both resorts with no blackout dates. That’s a total of 10 free days riding in Japan – which is a huge saving for pass holders visiting both resorts on a single trip. With no blackout dates holders can choose any dates they want and possibly even have a stopover in the middle of the trip. The Epic Pass price is $939, and the Epic Australia Pass is $859 AUD.

Ikon Pass

The IKON pass is another North American based pass provider, offering access to 38 destination resorts across the globe. In Japan, this pass can be used at the popular resort of Niseko United. Holders of the Ikon pass can get 7 free All Mountain 1 day tickets – with no blackout periods. The Ikon base pass will get you 5 free All Mountain 1 day tickets with some blackout dates (December 26-31, 2019; January 18-19, 2020; February 15-16, 2020). Day tickets from either pass can be used either consecutively or non-consecutively offering great freedom for pass holders. If there’s a rare down-day in the powder capital, you can take a break and visit nearby Sapporo, or Otaru. The Ikon Pass is $949 USD and the Ikon Base Pass is $649 USD.

Mountain Collective

The Mountain Collective is a worldwide pass, with participating resorts in the USA, South America, Australia and New Zealand. Pass holders receive one 2 Day Lift Pass with a bonus third day at any participating resort of their choice, as well as 50% off all additional days at any resort. The powder mecca of Niseko United is one of the best destinations available on the pass, with no blackout dates. The Mountain Collective Pass is $449 USD.

Kamori “K-Winter” Pass

Rusutsu, Sahoro, Sapporo Teine, and Nakayama Toge are some of the best resorts in Japan, and it’s possible to ride them all with just one pass. Hokkaido based operator Kamori Kanko runs all 4 legendary resorts, and their offering of the K-Winter Pass provides holders with great flexibility to ride them all season long. Pass holders can get unlimited riding at 4 major resorts at a reasonable price, plus more discounts on additional lift passes, rental, lessons and even some accommodation. Pass holders can also get 50% off lift tickets at many Vail Resorts, adding huge value to the pass. The K-Winter pass is ¥74,700 for the standard pass, and can be registered for in advance (attracts an early bird discount) by emailing the company directly, or can be purchased directly at any of the four resorts.

Hokkaido Ski Season Net

The Hokkaido Ski Season Net discount system is one of the most underrated and underused discount system for Japanese ski resorts. Season pass holders at any of the participating resorts can get discounts of up to ¥2,400 off day passes, plus a huge number of other various discounts and bonuses. This discount system includes some major resorts like Furano, Tomamu and Kiroro as well as some undiscovered local gems like Kamui Ski Links. The full list including all discounts can be found here. Season pass holders simply need to show their season pass at the ticket counter at participating resorts to receive the discounts.

Niseko All Mountain Pass

4 Resorts, 1 mountain – it’s that simple. That is the beauty of Niseko United. Skiers just need one lift pass and can access all four resorts of Niseko United which are all interconnected. This opens up a huge amount of terrain and makes it feel like all four resorts are really one in the same. Niseko has some of the best powder snow on the planet, and great terrain to match – so it makes sense to have just one pass to access all of it. The Niseko All Mountain Pass is ¥115,600 making it one of the more expensive passes on the list, but with world class, high quality snow on offer every day, it’s not hard to make the decision.

Hakuba Valley Pass

The Hakuba Valley is home to 10 different resorts including the legendary Happo-One (host of the Free Ridge World Tour), Tsugaike-Kogen, Goryu 47, and Cortina. With so many great resorts to explore, you might just need all season to see them all. Happo-One is one of the best locations and the Hakuba Gateway Hotel offers This Hakuba Valley season pass is ¥130,000 making it one of the more expensive passes, but with access to 10 major resorts it actually does pose good value.

 

Pass Resorts Price Benefits
Epic Pass Hakuba Valley, Rusutsu $939 USD for USA Epic Pass
$859 AUD for Epic Australia Pass
One free 5 Consecutive Day Lift Pass at Rusutsu. One free 5 Consecutive Day Lift Pass at Hakuba Valley. No blackout dates.
Ikon Pass Niseko United $949 USD for Ikon Pass.
$649 USD for Ikon Base Pass.
Ikon Pass holders receive up to 7 free all mountain 1 Day Tickets and 10 X 25% off 1 Day Tickets. Ikon Base pass holders receive 5 free all mountain 1 Day Tickets, and 8 X 25% off 1 Day Tickets.
Mountain Collective Niseko United $449 USD One free 2 Day Lift Pass. Holders can purchase unlimited 50% off 1 Day Tickets. Holders may purchase one 5 Day Ticket at 50% off.
Kamori “K-Winter” Pass Rusutsu Resort, Sahoro Resort, Sapporo Teine, Nakayama Toge ¥74,700 Unlimited skiing at any of the mentioned ski resorts. Up to 30% off additional day passes, ski lessons and rental. Free access to lounges, ski lockers, bathing facilities, and more (for Gold and Premium pass holders).  50% off lift tickets at Vail resorts in the USA and Australia.
Hokkaido Ski Season Net – Chart of Discounts 23 Hokaido Resorts ¥25,000 – Canmore Season Pass (Cheapest Season Pass) Holders of a season pass at listed resorts will receive discounts at 23 different ski resorts across Hokkaido. Up to ¥2,400 off day passes.
Niseko All Mountain Pass Niseko Annupuri, Niseko Village, Grand Hirafu, Hanazono ¥115,600 – Season Pass Unlimited skiing at all Niseko United resorts.
Hakuba Valley Pass All 10 Hakuba Valley Resorts ¥130,000 – Season Pass Unlimited skiing at 10 Individual resorts in Hakuba. 50% off lift tickets at Vail resorts in the USA and Australia.

Benefits of Booking Early

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Savings

One of the most obvious and best benefits to booking a Japan ski holiday early is the savings. Most resorts and accommodations offer early bird specials with significant discounts for the whole season. If you want to ski Japan and save, make sure to keep an eye out for early bird announcements. For a full list of active great deals, check out our Japan deals page.

Availability and Choice of Accommodation

Japan is one of the top ski destinations in the world, and the hottest accommodations tend to book out well before the snow starts to fall. By booking in advance, you can choose the resort you want, with the dates you want, at the time you want – making for the best ski holiday of your life.

Book for the Best Snow

Japan is renowned for its great snow all season, so you can book a Japan ski holiday well in advance without having to worry. If you’re after the deepest powder, aim for January and early February as these periods often have the most significant snowfalls.

Time to Plan Even More

By booking in advance, you’ll have time to plan even more adventures on your trip. Japan is home to some of the most unique cultural spots in the world. Kyoto, Tokyo and Osaka are just some of the best known and host stunning temples, shrines, mountains and more. Ask us about booking a stopover to one of these amazing cities during your trip.

Relax

Knowing you have your dream ski holiday sorted, you can now relax and focus on getting your mind and body ready for the best trip of your life. We can organise everything from your flights, accommodation, lessons, rental, lift passes, transfers and more.
For the best and easiest ski holiday of your life, the SkiJapan family today.

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