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Top 5 Best Ski Resorts in Japan!

Japan is known for breathtaking nature and wondrous mountain ranges, making it ideal for winter sports. After two winter Olympics and over 500 plus ski resorts it can be hard to figure out which of these spots are worth visiting. So here are our recommendations for the best ski spots in Japan for every type of Winter enthusiast!

1. Niseko, Hokkaido

Photo Courtesy of Ski Asia

Located in Japan's most northern prefecture Niseko is perhaps the most famous of all the ski areas in Japan. More often than not this area is covered in fresh powder with amazing views and includes slopes for all levels. In addition to its great conditions, the area is extremely English friendly and has a lively nightlife scene for nights out. Featuring horseback riding, onsens and more, with how popular the area is, transportation options also make the area easy to navigate, which cannot be said about other ski resorts. Perhaps the only downside to Niseko is that it does fall on the pricier side.

2. Rusutsu Nozawa Onsen, Hokkaido

Much like Niseko, Rusutsu is known for its fresh powder and some of the deepest snow you'll find at Japanese ski resorts. It also includes slopes for all levels with much smaller crowds when compared to Niseko. However, this area favors those only interested in skiing as it lacks a nightlife scene and can only be accessed by car and bus.

3. Hakuba Valley, Nagano

If you're looking for a family oriented area to ski, as well as Nagano's biggest terrain park and don't want to make the trip up north to Hokkaido, Hakuba is a great area to check out! Located about 4 hours outside of Tokyo by car Hakuba is an English friendly area that also features hot springs for post-ski decompressing. However, it lacks a little bit of a nightlife scene for partygoers.

4. Appi Kogen, Iwate

If you're looking for the largest resort in Tohoku with powder for miles, then Appi Kogen is the place for you. The area is english friendly with a wide variety of entertainment areas for post-slope adventures but it hasn't quite hit the radar for most tourists yet making it a great place to go if you want to explore a more lowkey area of Japan!

5. Naeba Niigata 

Variety is Naeba's specialty, making it a great place to explore. The area features over 20 ski resorts with slopes for all levels including a terrain park for those trying to show off a few tricks! Not to mention it also features Japan's longest gondola lift called the "dragondola."


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