5 Ski Resorts You Can Enjoy on a Day Trip from Tokyo

5 Ski Resorts You Can Enjoy on a Day Trip from Tokyo

Would you like to go skiing in Japan's mountainous areas? This article introduces Information on five ski resorts you can enjoy on a day trip from Tokyo in areas such as Nagano, Gunma and Shizuoka!

Skiing is one of the most popular winter sports in Japan. If you visit Japan in the winter and have at least one or two days at your disposal to travel to a ski resort, we highly recommend you go skiing in Japan's mountainous areas.

We would like to introduce here five ski resorts where you can go on a day trip from Tokyo.

1. GALA Yuzawa Snow Resort (Niigata Prefecture)

Image courtesy of GALA Yuzawa Corporation

GALA Yuzawa Snow Resort is located right near a shinkansen (bullet train) station, so it is a really convenient ski resort to go to. If you take the bullet train called Max Tanigawa which brings you directly to Gala-Yuzawa Station from Tokyo Station, you can reach it in only 75 minutes. At the exit from the ticket gate at the train station, a ticket counter of the ski resort will welcome you. You can change into your ski clothes and take a ski lift up to the top of the mountain right there.

Image courtesy of GALA Yuzawa Corporation

GALA Yuzawa Snow Resort has courses for all ability levels and a total of 17 ski trails are available. Gondolas for going down the mountain can become really crowded when people head home. It is possible to ski down the mountain but some of the paths might be difficult for beginners. If you are planning to ride a gondola on your way back, it is better to estimate that it would take a longer time than it usually takes.

Season Start/End: December 17, 2016 / May 7, 2017

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2. Fujimi Panorama Resort (Nagano prefecture)

Image courtesy of Fujimi development public corporation

Fujimi Panorama Resort is located two hours and 15 minutes away from Shinjuku if you take the limited express train, Azusa. This resort is best known for its unique slopes such as a "heart shaped slope" which is very popular with couples.

Image courtesy of Fujimi development public corporation

There is a saying that if you go to Yatsugatake observation deck or to a fashionable restaurant on the top of the mountain then ski down the heart slope, you will live happily ever after.

Season Start: December 10, 2016

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3. Snow Town Yeti (Shizuoka prefecture)

Image courtesy of Fujiyama Resort Co., Ltd

Snow Town Yeti is located two hours and 40 minutes away from Shinjuku by bus. In fact, direct buses from Tokyo to Snow Town Yeti are operated from 18 stations in total such as Hachioji, Shinagawa, Machida, Yokohama Station, and others. You can get on a bus at a station close to your place and you will soon be at the ski resort, which is really convenient, isn't it?

Image courtesy of Fujiyama Resort

Snow Town Yeti is the only place where you can ski with Mount Fuji in the background. Snow Town Yeti opens the earliest in Japan because it uses devices for making artificial snow. You can ski here even during the fall foliage season.

Season Start/End: October 21, 2016 / April 9, 2017

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4. Karuizawa Prince Hotel Ski Area (Nagano prefecture)

Image courtesy of Prince Hotels, Inc.

A one hour bullet train ride brings you from Tokyo to Karuizawa Prince Hotel Ski Area or KaruSki for short. Karuizawa Prince Hotel Ski Area offers free lift ticket service for kids as well as a snow stadium where you can try sledding and snow tubing. These features make Karuizawa Prince Hotel Ski Area a very child-friendly ski resort.

Image courtesy of Prince Hotels, Inc.

The East High-speed Lift also runs as a sightseeing lift and even for night tours, allowing visitors to ride the lift even if they don't ski at all.
Season Start/End: November 3, 2016 / April 2, 2017

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5. Norn Minakami Ski Resort (Gunma Prefecture)

Image courtesy of Norn Minakami Ski Resort

Norn Minakami Ski Resort is accessible in one and a half hours from Tokyo by the Jōetsu bullet train. Norn Minakami Ski Resort is open until 22:00 from Sunday to Thursday and until midnight on Fridays and Saturdays. Various types of discounted tickets are available depending on which time of the day you ski, such as the early morning pass, twilight pass and night pass. Norn Minakami Ski Resort has pretty steep slopes which are ideal for intermediate level skiers and above.
Season Start/End: December 17, 2016 / March 31, 2017

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How do you like the ski resorts we introduced here? Going to ski on a day trip is a fun and relaxing activity, not to mention that Japan's mountains offer an amazing landscape in the winter. We hope you enjoy skiing in Japan!

Author & Translator

旅と3度の食事とランニングが元気の源。知らない土地でのわくわくも、お気に入りの喫茶店でまったりする時間も好きです。

Translated by Allie

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