Family TravelJapanWinter

The Best Ski Resorts in Japan 2018-2019

True, there are plenty of snowfields anywhere around the world, but they’re nothing like the ones in Japan, where the delicate snows are soft as the clouds. There’s something poetic about how the powdery snow glistens in the sun, covering the landscape while delicate snowflakes are waltzing through the air. If you are going after adrenaline-filled winter activities in Asia, Japan is no doubt one of the top choices! There’s no place else like Japan where you can indulge in exciting winter sports while basking in the unique and breathtaking alpine scenery.

Is this your first time organizing your ski trip to Japan? To save your time from digging up all the information and poring through travel books, we’ve prepared everything you need to know right here! We’ll count through the best ski resorts in Tokyo, Osaka, Mount Fuji, Karuizawa, and Hokkaido, where you can make your ski experience remarkable.

 

Japan Ski Resorts Tours

 

Osaka, Kyoto: Biwako Valley

Biwako Valley, (Image via Fotolia)

Wanna see the best snow lake view in Japan? Biwako Valley is your best bet. Glide down the snow-capped mountain hill while marveling at the astounding panoramic view of Lake Biwa, the largest lake in Japan.  

Whether you are a winter sports lover or not, the rich snow and the view here make it a heaven paradise for everyone.  The popularity of this resort doesn’t come without any reason. Aside from the magnificent lake view, it is fully furnished with 9 courses cater to skiers and snowboarders of all levels. Kids have their area to play with the snow, and every coming visitor will certainly drool over the impressive meals available.

Biwako Valley, (Image via Fotolia)

The resort is within 40 minutes reach from Kyoto. Make sure you are all dressed and get your camera ready before you take the ropeway up to the resort, for the picture-perfect scenery and the grand snow playground await you!

A quick tip: For absolute beginners who crave for learning to ski, remember to book a ski lesson on the official website before you take off!

Osaka: Rokko Snow Park

The night view from Rokko Snow Park, (Image via Fotolia)

Another mountain snow park for winter sports rookies and parents with children! The gentle terrain of Rokko Snow Park is not only an ideal snowfield for beginners, but also perfect for kids to make a snowman, jump into snowball fights, and have sleigh rides down the hill! However, if you are a ski expert with a need for speed and all of these sounds rather boring to you, just take a cable car up to the mountain. You’ll find more challenging courses to test your abilities.

Don’t miss out one of “Japan’s big three night views”, the night view of Kobe— an ocean of shimmering city lights spreading out along the coastline, as spectacular as the Milky Way!

A quick tip: Compared to Biwako Valley, the transportation to Rokko Snow Park could be more complicated. We suggest taking a one-day trip to save up your time on transportations!

 

    • Suitable for: Visitors traveling to Osaka and Kobe, family trip, ski beginners, snow enthusiasts
    • Address: 4512-98 Rokkosancho, Nada Ward, Kobe (Google Maps)
    • Winter Season: 17th Nov 2018 to 31st Mar 2019
    • Transportation: From Hankyu Rokko Station/ JR Rokkomichi station/ Hanshin Mikage Station, take  Kobe City Bus Route 16 and get off at Rokko Cable Shita Station.
    • Recommended Tour: Day Tour from Osaka: Rokko Snow Park & Arima Onsen
    • Official Website

 

 

 

Karuizawa: Prince Snow Resort

Karuizawa: Prince Snow Resort, (Image via Fotolia)

Bravely launch yourself down the run, feel the crisp alpine air flow through your body as you shred through the picturesque snow-capped mountain view right in front of you. Selected Best 3 in the “World’s Best Ski Resort Company 2017”, Prince Snow Resort is your best winter go-to located just outside Tokyo.

The resort does have it all. It has 10 trails of multiple levels, ski and snowboard rentals, private lessons, night tours and activities, restaurants and even outlets! We suggest staying here for 3 days and 2 nights in their hotel to give yourself time for all kinds of activities and a well-deserved break.

Don’t forget to book an English ski lesson before you go!

    • Suitable for: Visitors traveling to Tokyo, dedicated skiers and snowboarders
    • Address: Karuizawa, Karuizawa-machi, Kitasaku-gun Nagano, 389-0193
    • Winter Season: 3rd Nov 2018 to 31st Mar 2019
    • Transportation: From Tokyo, take Hokuriku Shinkansen to Karuizawa Station. From South Exit, take the free shuttle bus provided by the hotel.
    • Official Website

 

 

 

Mt. Fuji: Snowtown Yeti

Snowtown Yeti, (Image via Fotolia)

Who would refuse to ski with the spectacular backdrop of mighty Mt. Fuji? Snowtown Yeti is another perfect option for those traveling from Tokyo. It’s suitable for all skiers, thanks to the  wide array of facilities and slopes.

The resort is one the earliest to kick off each season in Japan (around early October).  They not only offer new models of equipment for rent, courses from beginner to advanced level, but also day care services and playground for kids, along with a small terrain park with jumps and rails!

Snowtown Yeti, (Image via Fotolia)

Since it is located on the southern slope of Mt. Fuji, visitors normally take about 3 hours for a round trip from Tokyo. But here’s the good news— You can make all that travel hassle disappear by booking the day tour that offers convenient bus transfers, a 1-day ticket to the resort, snowboard/ski-board, and snow boots. Please be noted that the day tour does not include lessons. The resort does provide Japanese ski lessons if you speak the language!

 

    • Suitable for: Visitors traveling to Tokyo, beginner and intermediate level skiers, families
    • Address: 2428 Aza Fujiwara, Suyama, Susono-shi, Shizuoka Prefecture 410-1231 (Google Maps)
    • Winter Season: 19th Oct 2018 to Apr 2019
    • Transportation: Take the bus from JR Gotemba/ JR Mishima/ JR Susono/ JR Fuji/ Yoshiwara Chuo/ Fujinomiya Station (You can use Fuji Hakone Pass or Mt. Fuji Pass)
    • Recommended Tour: Snowtown Yeti Ski Tour from Tokyo
    • Official Website

 

 

 

Yuzawa Naeba Prince Snow Resort

Yuzawa Naeba Prince Snow Resort, (Image via Shutterstock)

Soft snow powder, park, and mogul terrain, Naeba Ski resort is the place that challenges you to become a better skier! It is beloved by tons of skiers and snowboards because of its 22 slopes equally distributed in levels of difficulty, and the 4,000-meter long trail where players can experience the long distance glide!

Unlike other snow resorts where there were only a few ski lifts, here they have 13. Say adios to the waiting game! Besides skiing and snowboarding, you’ll find plenty of Snow Lands where visitors of all ages— Snow tubing, sled, running bike, snowshoe day tours and many more.

    • Suitable for: Skiers and snowboarders of all level
    • Address: 202 Mikuni, Yuzawa, Minamiuonuma District, Niigata Prefecture 949-6212
    • Winter Season: 15th Dec 2018 to 4th Mar 2019
    • Transportation: From Tokyo Station, take the Hokuriku Shinkansen to Echigo-Yuzawa Station, then take the hotel shuttle bus or Minami-Echigo Kanko Bus to the resort
    • Official Website

 

 

 

Tambara Ski Park

For those snow enthusiasts intimidated by winter sports, look no further! Tambara Ski Park, not far off Tokyo, is a beginner and kid-friendly snow land for visitors to learn skiing in a less daunting environment.

A lavender paradise in summer and a small but lovely ski park in the winter, it is the snowfield where you are able to take in the alpine scenery while you glide on the gentle slopes. Unwind from the urban grind by visiting the farm field nearby. Pick strawberries in the warm house and dig in delicious king crabs by joining the day tour!

 

 

 

Hokkaido: Sapporo Kokusai Ski Resort

Sapporo Kokusai Ski Resort, (Image via Fotolia)

Now let’s move from industrialized Japan to the untamed frontier, Hokkaido, a land rich in snow-covered forests and mountains. Sapporo Kokusai Ski Resort is the biggest resort near Sapporo, drawing most of the locals from Sapporo searching for an exciting winter staycation.  

The resort has 1 beginner, 2 beginner-intermediate, 2 intermediate and 1 advanced slope. Even though categorized as beginner, the slopes are actually more advanced than the intermediate courses of other resorts!  Don’t be intimidated though, the softness of the snow in this resort make it less hurtful when falling. On top of that, there are dedicated area for absolute first-timers to practice, accompanied by professional coaches. Check out the website and book a lesson!

    • Suitable for:  backpackers in Hokkaido, devoted ski learners, families
    • Address: Jozankei 937, Minami-ku, Sapporo, Hokkaido
    • Winter Season: 16th Nov 2018 to 31rd Mar
    • Transportation: Take the Hokkaido Resort Liner Bus (reservation only) from New Chitose Airport/ Downtown Sapporo/ Jozankei Hot Springs to the resort
    • Official Website

 

Hokkaido: Furano Prince Snow Resort

Furano Prince Snow Resort, (Image via Fotolia)

Your search for the resort with the excellent quality of snow is over. Furano Prince Snow Resort is where you can find the best light-dry powder snow! It is a hidden gem that has not yet gained its popularity among tourists, making it the perfect location for skiers who hate the crowds (well, like most of us).  Not to mention its sufficient facilities and experience in hosting international ski events. We seriously can’t think of any reason not to go!

The resort is divided into two areas: Furano and Kitanomine, connected by a common trail at the top of the mountain. The 23 trails cover a wide range of difficulty of terrain and elevation. For beginners and children, go for the two magic carpet escalators accessed slopes that are more gentle and mild. For the experienced, challenge yourself at the ungroomed powder runs and steep slopes or Backcountry Ski to pump yourself up on adrenaline!

A quick tip: For ski lessons, put two schools that collaborate with the snow resort into your wish lists— Furano Snow School and Kimura Kiminobu Ski School.

 

  • Suitable for: backpackers in Hokkaido, devoted ski learners, families
  • Address: Nakagoryo, Furano, Hokkaido (Google Maps)
  • Winter Season: 25th Nov 2018 to 6 May 2019
  • Transportations: Take “Lavender Bus” From Furano Station to the resort (18 minutes drive), or take the free shuttle bus to the Prince Hotel area
  • Recommended service: Hokkaido Furano Ski Resort Shuttle Service 

Bonus: JR Tokyo Wide Pass and GALA Yuzawa Snow Resort Package

Here’s another great option for those traveling to Tokyo: try the ultimate travel fuss-free snow resort package! With the package, you’ll get JR Tokyo Wide Pass that allows you to journey around Kanto region with ease and pick a day to GALA Yuzawa Snow Resort. Save up your time and money for a special winter experience!

 

For more exciting things to do for your winter getaway:

 

 

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