One of the best ryokans (traditional Japanese inn) in the Snow Monkey area is Kanbayashi Hotel Senjukaku, the ryokan closest to the Snow Monkey Park. From the ryokan, it is only a 30 minute walk to the park along a forest trail.
The easiest way to get to Senjukaku is to get to Yudanaka Station. From there you can get on the reservation-based shuttle bus to Hotel Senjukaku by making a phone call to the hotel upon your arrival to Nagano Station (see below for a more detailed explanation).
See below for a step-by-step explanation of how to get to Yudanaka Station from Tokyo, Kanazawa, and Nagoya.
1.How to get to JR Nagano Station
The first step to Senjukaku is to get to the station of Nagano City, the capital of Nagano Prefecture.
From Tokyo & Kanazawa to Nagano Station
From Tokyo, the largest city in Japan, and Kanazawa, the capital of Ishikawa Prefecture, the easiest way to travel to Nagano is via Shinkansen train. The Shinkansen line running to Nagano City is called the Hokuriku Shinkansen Line, and runs between Tokyo Station and Kanazawa Station. Nagano Station is right in between these two cities.
The Hokuriku Line is run by three different Shinkansen trains; the Kagayaki, Hakutaka, and Asama. The Kagayaki train is the one that will take you to Nagano the fastest (in about 90 minutes) while the Asama takes the most time (in about 110 minutes). Please note, the Kagayaki train only has reserved seats.
From Nagoya to Nagano Station
Nagoya Station is one of the busiest stations in Japan and as such, can be difficult to navigate. The train to Nagano however, is quite straightforward. There is only one line heading to Nagano, called Limited Express Shinano, taking approximately 3 hours. The last station of the line from Nagoya is Nagano Station so you won’t miss Nagano Station.
The train to Nagano from Nagoya leaves from platform 10 (this might change due to unforeseeable circumstances) and leaves regularly once an hour.
2.How to get to Yudanaka Station from Nagano Station
Upon arrival to Nagano Station, please head to the Nagano Dentetsu line. You can find this line by going to the Zenko-ji Exit and taking the right escalator down to the Nagano Dentetsu Line, located at the -1 floor of the station building. The trains from here will take you to Yudanaka Station (this line is operated by a private railway company so JR passes cannot be used).
Please see below for the timetable for the recommended express trains to take. These trains will get you to Senjukaku Hotel in time for dinner.
Nagano Station → Yudanaka Station
・11:33 → 12:16
・13:02 → 13:46
・14:18 → 15:09
・15:33 → 16:20
・16:43 → 17:29
Once you know the departure time of you Nagano Dentestu train from Nagano Station, please call the hotel at +81-269-33-3551. The staff will make sure to reserve a shuttle bus from Yudanaka Station to Kanbayashi Hotel Senjukaku.
From Yudanaka to Senjukaku
At Yudanaka Station a member of staff will be waiting for your arrival if you reserved the shuttle to the hotel via +81-269-33-3551. He/she will take you on the Senjukaku bus to the hotel where you can relax, enjoy hot springs, eat traditional foods, and visit the Snow Monkey Park.