April 6, 2017 By:
THE HAKUBA VALLEY The small mountain village of Hakuba rests deep within the Japanese Alps, approximately 3 hours from Tokyo and attracts thousands of snow enthusiasts each season. The main attractions are, of course, skiing and snowboarding at its stunning scenery combined with pristine snow conditions and an expanse of terrain to explore over 11 Ski Resorts. But let’s not forget that the slopes aren’t all that matter. The best part of what makes a ski holiday memorable in Japan is to experience its exotic culture. HAKUBA SKIING NIGHT Hakuba is a winter paradise with plenty of options for the outdoor lover who are interested in experiencing the snow, but who do not want to ski or snowboard. Try snowshoeing, snowmobiling and for relaxing days off take a trip to the famous Matsumoto castle or visit the snow monkeys in Jigokudani Park. With so many great places to eat and play in town, it’s just about impossible to say which are the best restaurants/bars in Hakuba because each has character and a vibe of its own. A few places we’ve had a great experience rest right in the heart of the village. Sharaku is a traditionally styled Izakaya offering delicious share plates of Japanese cuisine all prepared with the freshest local ingredients accompanied by a wide variety of Sake and beers. The Chef here, Nakasato-san the art of Sushi making over many years and arguably makes the best Sushi in Hakuba. GUIDE TO HAKUBA If you’re looking for a wonderful Après ski experience Jack’s Bar hosts guest DJs, live musicians and their famous karaoke and trivia night. Mockingbird is great quirky little bar located in the heart of Echoland offering amazing food options and excellent Japanese hospitality perfect for a quiet night to relax with friends, or a place to kick off a big night out. Now that we’ve established that Hakuba has tons of amazing things to see and do, time to find a place to rest your head. Whether you are looking for a cozy suite or private chalet Hakuba has something to fit every taste and budget. If you love to socialise and make the most of the nights as well as the days on your ski holiday, then The Lab is the place for you. The rooms are comfortable and clean and the lounge has lively Après ski sessions daily. The Happo One Ski Resort is only a 10-minute walk away, making The Lab a perfect budget holiday option in Hakuba . Nozawa Onsen Apartments Kick back in style in the heart of Happo Village, Hakuba Springs is in a prime location and is just a 5-minute walk from Happo One Ski Resort. The large, modern Western-style rooms are simply furnished and after a long day of activity guests can soak in the Onsen or relax in the sauna. THE MARILLEN HOTEL The Marillen Hotel is a unique accommodation option in Hakuba in the fact that it is the only true ski in/ ski out property on the Happo One slopes. This boutique hotel is only a five-minute walk to the restaurants, shops and bars of the Happo village. Ski Hakuba Hakuba is approximately 270km from Tokyo and is easily accessible by various different options. The quickest way to get there is to hop on the bullet train, there are 3 connections, but well coordinated. If you are travelling with children and/or carrying a lot of luggage avoid jumping from platform to platform and book into a shared taxi or bus (4.5-5 hours) directly from the airport. It is a little more expensive but less the hassle. Getting there: Liquid Snow Tours are experts in the area. With staff on the ground year round they will look after all aspects of your travel and have options to suit all requirements. Source url:

March 22, 2017 By:
Japan is world renowned for some of the best powder skiing in the world with an average of 10-17 metres of snowfall per season. With ample high quality snow, beautiful scenery, great food and relaxing hot springs. A ski holiday to Japan is one you’ll never forget! Before you arrive to the land of the rising sun here are a few helpful tips for planning your ski holiday. WHAT TO KNOW? Most nationalities qualify for a 90-day entry visa but you MUST have a return flight before you arrive in Japan. Carry cash! ATMs are hard to find in many resort towns and small businesses and restaurants are yet to accept cards. Have enough cash to hold you over for a few days. If you plan on hiring a car to get to and from the resort you will need an AAA International driver’s license. If you’re not used to driving in harsh winter conditions there are plenty of on resort options for you to get around. Bathing suits are not to be worn inside onsens and it is customary to shower beforehand Remove your shoes when entering a Japanese house or establishment and wear the slippers your host provide. HOW TO GET TO YOUR RESORT? The best resorts and snow conditions in Northern Japan are in Hokkaido and Tohoku and in the South are Niigata and Nagano. Most resorts are easily accessible by various different options and are on time and efficient. Direct transfers to Nagano and Niigata from Tokyo, Narita and Haneda airport involve getting a shared taxi service or a shuttle bus. (Read The quickest way is to hop on the shinkansen (bullet train), there are a few connections but well coordinated. To avoid an 18-20 hour bus journey to the Northern resorts of Japan book a domestic flight to Chitose airport and take a direct ski bus to Niseko or your resort of choice. Shinkansen’s usually require a bit more time and if you choose a sleeper seat be prepared to pay extra even if you have a JR pass. Snow Resorts In Japan TIP: If you plan on travelling around Japan before or after your ski trip avoid hauling around your heavy luggage through over crowded cities and use the Kuroneko (Black Cat Couriers) service to and from the airport or to your accommodation. WHERE TO STAY? - FIND YOUR ACCOMMODATION IN JAPAN Japan offers a wide range of accommodation whether you are looking for a cosy suite or a private chalet Japan has something to fit every taste and budget. Westernized accommodation is found throughout the country but if you’re looking for an opportunity to experience a traditional Japanese lifestyle Ryokans and Minshuku’s incorporate elements such as tatami floors, futon beds and Japanese baths. WHEN TO GO? Choosing the right time to go skiing is a big consideration for anyone planning a trip and depends on whether you want to avoid crowds, benefit from discounted lift passes and accommodation or chase the best powder. Ski holidays in japan There are a number of factors to take into consideration and requires some careful planning. Once you’ve found the perfect ski resort and booked your accommodation all you have to do is count the weeks until your ski holiday begins. Source url: