Togakushi Ski Resort
Located less than an hour from Nagano Station, Togakushi Ski Resort is a small but highly enjoyable ski area popular with locals. Consisting of 19 ski runs serviced by 7 chairlifts – a total of around 58 hectares of piste and 550 metres of vertical – Togakushi is indeed relatively small but unlike the larger resorts of Hakuba, it retains its Japanese character.
Mostly frequented by Japanese, you won’t encounter the crowds and hugely international profile of the Hakuba resorts. Weekdays are likely to be quiet and when the snow is good, this is a highly entertaining resort that you’ll wish you discovered earlier!The resort remains heavily focused on skiers with snowboarders a relative rarity and those that are there usually know what they’re doing. The lack of snowboard newbies at Togakushi is a positive, as the ski runs are uncluttered by first-timers allowing intermediate and advanced skiers and snowboarders to go about their business without hindrance.
Togakushi can’t boast the massive snowfall of others resorts in Nagano. Indeed its season average of less than 8 metres seems somewhat disappointing however the quality of its powder is good. Togakushi also experiences significantly colder temperatures than other resorts meaning that the snow stays in better condition for longer.
TOGAKUSHI SKI RESORT: NAGANO’S HIDDEN GEM
Togakushi very much flies under the radar for international visitors with very few ever venturing to this distinctively local and decent little resort. Actually located within the boundaries of Nagano City, Togakushi Ski Resort can be accessed from Nagano Station using local bus services or a taxi. Popular with local families, the resort can be busy on weekends and holidays but should you make it there during the week, you are likely to have it largely to yourself. One of the more picturesque resorts in the region – on clear days you’ll have fantastic views of the surrounding mountains – Togakushi is well-suited to visitors wanting to escape the international feel and crowds of Hakuba and enjoy a distinctly Japanese winter adventure.
Operating Dates & Times
Dependent on snow conditions, the resort is typically open from mid-December until late-March or early-April. Lifts operate daily from 08:30 to 16:30. Togakushi does not have night-skiing.
Togakushi offers a total of 58ha of terrain accessed via 19 ski runs and 7 chairlifts. Courses breakdown as: beginner 30% / intermediate 40% / advanced 30%. The resort sits between 1300 to 1749 metres with a modest 548 metres of vertical and actually offers some steep black runs which when full of powder, are left ungroomed and a lot of fun.
Togakushi is largely unknown by international visitors however given its close proximity to Nagano Station and typically quiet ski runs, it has quite a lot of going for it. There’s a nice mix of terrain suitable for all levels with some gentle and wide runs perfect for beginners, while multiple black runs will keep advanced riders entertained. The black runs on the back side of the resort are steep and left ungroomed. Most people don’t venture down them on days of heavy snow meaning that you can find some truly awesome powder there on days of heavy snow. On clear days, the resort offers fantastic views of the surrounding mountains.
Tickets & Passes
A day-pass will cost: Adults JPY4500 / Children JPY2500 / Seniors (50+) JPY4000 while a half-day pass will cost: Adults JPY3600 / Children JPY2200 / Seniors (50+) JPY3000.
Rental & Ski School
Togakushi has a good rental shop offering both ski and snowboard gear, located behind the resort’s main building. There is also a ski school located directly across from the main building however instruction is only available in Japanese.
The resort does not permit backcountry and sidecountry is very limited. This will likely frustrate advanced skiers and snowboarders looking to get off-piste. If that’s you, Togakushi might not be the best fit.
Kids & Families
There is a good-sized kids activity area located directly across from the resorts main building, which on fine days also has great views of the surrounding mountains. There are no day-care services at Togakushi.
Accommodation & Village Info
The area around the ski resort is home to multiple ski lodges. Most are family-run and offer homely experiences including dinner and breakfast. However, visitors headed to Togakushialso might want to consider some more unique in the form of the many ‘shukubo’ (temple lodgings) and ‘ryokan’ (traditional guesthouses) that are associated with the important Shinto shrine complex nearby the resort. For acommodation listings in the area, see our ‘Togakushi Area’ hotel page. Alternatively, the area is within easy reach of Nagano City allowing you to also stay there and then make the journey up and down by local bus or taxi. For accommodation listings in Nagano, see our ‘Nagano City Area’ hotel page.
GETTING TO TOGAKUSHI SKI RESORT
Our ‘How to Get to Togakushi’ page provides information on how to reach the area from Nagano Station and from more distant starting points including Tokyo and its airports. From Nagano, Alpico operates local bus services to various points in Togakushi including the ski resort. To reach the bus stop, exit the station via the Zenkoji Exit and head to your left to the crossing (there is a large video display on the other side of the road).
Walk across the road and again go to your left. You will shortly come to the Alpico bus stand. There are several buses headed for Togakushi however the No.70 is the most convenient when heading to the ski resort. It takes around 80-minutes each way during winter with multiple services operating each day. Alternatively, a taxi will get you from the station to the resort much faster, taking around 50-minutes during winter.
JAPAN SKI RESORTS: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW
Did you know that Togakushi is just one of the more than eighty ski resorts in Nagano and more than five hundred in Japan? Needless to say, when you choose Nagano for your winter getaway you are spoiled for choice! Our ‘Japan Ski Resorts’ page has everything you need to know to start planning your ski and snowboard adventure including: LATEST NEWS & DEALS, THE BEST RESORTS IN NAGANO & JAPAN, FAQs and of course OUR SKI PACKAGES, ACCOMMODATION, TRANSPORT & TOURS.
BOOK WITH US! NAGANO’S NO.1 TOUR & CHARTER OPERATOR
Locally-based and operating all year round, Snow Monkey Resorts is Nagano’s No.1 tour and charter operator. We have the local knowledge of where and when to go, to help you discover and enjoy the region’s many ski resorts and other fantastic destinations and activities.
For guests wanting to access the resorts in the comfort of their own transport, we can arrange a private tour or charter customised to fit your needs, starting and ending at any destination including from/to Nagano Station and any resort in the region. Our drivers and vehicles are fully certified, allowing us to transport you to and from your preferred destinations in combination with any activity that suits your schedule.
All vehicles 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.
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 Togakushi this winter? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s get planning together!