Probably less known around the world as a winter sports destination, Japan could definitely be considered for an out-of-the-box skiing experience.
The archipelago offers abundant, high quality snow, beautiful scenery and hot springs to relax your muscles after a busy day on the slopes. Most of Japan’s ski resorts are concentrated on the main Honshu Island, as well as on the northern landmass of Hokkaido. Known for its organized and calm atmosphere, Japan is the perfect destination for the annual ski trip. Facilities are excellent, as are the leisure activities for both adults and children.
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The best resorts are located on the northern island of Hokkaido. Niseko, the country’s most famous winter vacation spot boosts a dormant volcano (Mount Yotei), 64 tracks, many ski lifts and some other extras that will make not want to ski anywhere else: hot outdoor baths that can also be used during the winter. The resort has an extensive network of ski instructors for the little ones and winter ski schools in Niseko can be easily found online.
Zao Onsen is one of Japan’s oldest ski resorts and offers over 30 lifts, gondolas and ropeways and a variety of different courses suitable for skiers and snowboarders of all abilities, especially beginners and intermediates. Therefore, it’s a good spot for your young ones to start their skiing “careers.” Hot springs included!
One of the largest ski areas in Japan is Shiga Kogen. 71 lifts cover the region – keep your kids close by so you don’t lose them in this labyrinth of tracks.
Accommodation is mostly concentrated in Hasuike, in the many hotels located throughout the area. You won’t get bored during your stay here, as local wild monkeys roam around town (you can even bathe with them in the public hot water pools).
Sahoro steals the show with 17 lifts and numerous daily activities for children aged above four. Locals and Westerners choose to spend their vacation here because of the numerous international hotels located in the resort, many with swimming pools. A similar place is Nozawa Onsen; friendly with both kids and parents. Facilities here include snowmobiling and cross country skiing for the older ones, as well as swimming pools and water slides for the little ones.
To end, it ought to be said that Japan will probably not be a first choice when it comes to picking a destination for a ski vacation with your family, but it has the level of infrastructure and dedicated amenities that will allow you to have a great time.