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Photoblog: Jigokudani Monkey Park in January 2021
  • Photoblog: Jigokudani Monkey Park in January 2021

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    It’s certainly been a great start to winter with plenty of snow falling all over Nagano and in the monkey park. As always, the monkeys have been coming to the park in big numbers this winter as they enjoy frolicking in the fresh snow and soaking in their hot spring.

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    For the youngest monkeys, it’s their first winter and it takes time for them to adjust to the cold, often huddling together to stay warm. Of course that behaviour isn’t only for the young ones, with family members snuggling-up to each other to stay warm through these long, cold months.

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    Through winter, the monkeys enjoy soaking in their ‘onsen’ (natural hot spring), with the pregnant females and little ones spending the most time relaxing in the water. Mature males avoid getting in the onsen as when wet, their hair mats to their bodies and they look notably smaller – a big disadvantage when trying to attract a mate or intimidate their male rivals.

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    While the snow is great and there are lots of monkeys in the park, current circumstances mean that visitor numbers are a fraction of the usual amount of people who visit in other winters. For those who do make the journey, they can enjoy watching and photographing the monkeys with an unusual amount of space and without having to compete to the best photo spot with other visitors.

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    The walk along the trail has been particularly beautiful in recent weeks – as you can see in the top photo – with plenty of snow and few people walking along it. When walking the trail, look-out for monkeys soaking in the hot spring outside the park. Attached to local guesthouse, this outdoor pool is where the monkeys first engaged in the behaviour of soaking in a hot spring having watched humans do just that.

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    As Nagano’s No.1 tour and charter operator, our tours are available every day of the year and we are welcoming in the New Year with discounts across all of our tours!

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    All tours are led by locally-based, English-speaking guides with precautions taken to ensure the safety and comfort of guests (along with the guide) and as a registered travel agent, we can package your tour and accommodation so you save more and can enjoy the best of Nagano this winter.

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    This information is provided as part of our ‘Clean Green & Healthy’ campaign, allowing you to plan and book your future travel to Japan with peace of mind.

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    We hope this information inspires you to plan your next trip to Nagano – with so many outdoor destinations and activities, Nagano and Central Japan offer the perfect getaway!

    PACKAGE ANY OF OUR TOURS WITH ACCOMMODATION!


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    When planning and booking your trip to Central Japan, it’s important that you can do so with confidence that your intended destinations will be both enjoyable and safe.

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    As Nagano’s No.1-rated tour and charter operator, we offer a range of services including group tours, private tours and private charters, and accommodation to help you get the most out of your time in the region.

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    Any of our group tours can be booked with accommodation in Nagano, or as private tours starting and ending at locations of your choosing. Please note, depending on the group size, group tours can be conducted using public transport however all private tours are conducted using our own vehicles.

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    We can arrange transport to and from any destination in the region, with a customised itinerary to suit your travel needs. Our drivers and vehicles are fully certified, allowing us to transport you to and from any destination. Vehicles used for private tours are fitted with a protective screen – separating the driver from passenger and luggage area – and our drivers wear protective masks, allowing you to move between your destinations in comfort and safety.

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    We can arrange both private tours with an English-speaking guide or a private charter, including a private vehicle and driver but without a guide. We’d love to be part of that experience and help you discover even more!

    Why choose us?

    Awarded a 2019 TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Award for our 1-Day Snow Monkeys, Zenko-ji Temple & Sake Tour – recognised as one of the Top 10 Experiences in Japan – we have the local knowledge and experience to help you get the most out of your time in Nagano.

    Got a question about visiting the monkey park? Feel free to contact us at snowmonkeyresorts@machinovate.com and let’s get planning together!

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