How to Get to Shiga Kogen – Nagano Ski Resorts Info
Located approximately 45KM (1 hour drive) to the east of Nagano City and 280KM (<5 hours drive) to the northwest of Tokyo, Shiga Kogen is Japan’s largest ski resort, boasting over 600 hectares of terrain, Japan’s highest chair-lifted ski run, and Nagano’s best powder!
As a host venue for the 1998 Winter Olympics, Shiga’s credentials speak for themselves. Less developed and less crowded than other popular Nagano resorts, Shiga Kogen is the perfect destination for visitors looking for the beauty and freedom of a uniquely Japanese resort, easily accessible from the following points of origin.
We hope the following information assists with planning your visit to Shiga Kogen.
From Nagano Station
When traveling to Shiga Kogen from Nagano Station, visitors have the option of using the Nagaden Express Bus service directly to Shiga – via the Jigokudani Monkey Park (discussed below) – or taking the Nagaden limted express train to Yudanaka Station and switching onto a local bus headed for the resort – again, via the Jigokudani Monkey Park. Local train services also run all the way to Yudanaka Station but given the minimal cost difference and substantial time saving, we recommend only using limited express services if opting to use the train.
Bus: the Nagaden Express Bus takes approx. 70-90 minutes and costs JPY1800-2100 per person depending where in Shiga you want to get-off. Running to Shiga Kogen (via the Snow Monkey Park), the express bus is the easiest and most convenient way to get to the resort directly from Nagano Station.
Exit the station’s East Exit and descend to the ground floor by the stairs or elevator. The Nagaden Express Bus departs from Bus Stop 23 and takes approx. 70 minutes to reach the Shiga Kogen Yamanoeki Bus Station in the Hasuike ski fields – the gateway stop for the resort- and 90 minutes to reach Okushiga (the most distant area of the resort). Tickets are bought on the bus – directly from the driver with no reservation required – with numerous services each day during winter. For the bus schedule, see our ‘Nagaden Shiga Kogen Express Bus Timetable’ page.
Train: the limited express train takes approx. 50 minutes to Yudanka Station and costs JPY1290, while local trains take notably longer, approx. 110+ minutes and costs JPY1190, using the Nagano Dentetsu Line. For the small difference in price, the ease, speed, and comfort of the express services are your best bet.
To reach the train, exit the station via the Zenkoji Exit and take the escalator heading underground (to your right) to the Nagano Dentetsu Line. Tickets can be bought at the machines or ticket window to the side. For the train schedule, refer to our ‘Nagano Dentetsu Line Timetable’ page. Once at Yudanaka Station, follow the directions below.
From Yudanaka Station
Yudanaka Station is the nearest train station to Shiga Kogen – and Jigokudani Monkey Park – with two local buses services operating from outside the station to different areas of the resort. While this can seem a little confusing, the journey is easily navigable.
The Shiga Kogen Line heads to Shiga Kogen with its final destination being Hotaru Onsen (Suzurikawa) while the Shiga Kogen Express Line also services Shiga Kogen but with a final destination of Okushiga Kogen Hotel. Expect the following travel times by local bus from Yudanka Station:
For example, if you are staying in Ichinose, Prince Hotel, or Okushiga areas, you need to take the Shiga Kogen Express Line bus bound for Okushiga and disembark at the bus stop named after area you are aiming for i.e. Ichinose, Prince Hotel West/South/East, Okushiga Kogen Hotel, etc. Alternatively, if you are headed to the Yokoteyama area, take the Shiga Kogen Line bus bound for Hotaru Onsen (Suzurikawa) and get off the bus at Hotaru Onsen or Kumanoyu.
Both bus lines first stop in Shibu Onsen, the Snow Monkey Park and at the Shiga Kogen Yamanoeki in Hasuike (pictured below) – the gateway bus terminal of Shiga Kogen. Therefore, no matter where you are headed to or staying in Shiga Kogen, you can take either bus as far as the Hasuike bus stop in Shiga Kogen, and change lines there if necessary.
You pay the driver as you disembark the bus. The time taken from the station to different parts of the resort vary quite a lot. For further information regarding how to use the buses, please refer to our ‘Nagaden Local Bus’ page.
From the Jigokudani Monkey Park
The local bus services that run from Yudanaka Station to Shiga Kogen do so via the Jigokudani Monkey Park. Information regarding fares and timetables can be found through our ‘Nagaden Local Bus Timetable’ page. It will take been 30 to 60 minutes (depending on which part of Shiga Kogen you are coming from) and will cost between JPY580 to JPY1100. No reservation is needed. You simply pay for your ticket on the bus when disembarking.
From Nozawa Onsen
The easiest option to reach Shiga Kogen from Nozawa Onsen is to take the Nozawa Onsen Liner or taxi to Iiyama Station and from there, return to Nagano Station. Once at Nagano, follow the directions above onto Shiga. For further information, please refer to our ‘Iiyama Station’ page. Alternatively, a private charter from Nozawa to Shiga is a great option for groups including families who want to make the transfer as easy and quick as possible. Including transport of all your ski and snowboard gear, we’ll pick you up and drop you off directly at your accommodation – see below for details.
From Myoko Kogen
From Myoko Kogen, take the Hokuriku Shinkansen from Joetsu-Myoko Station to Nagano Station. This service takes approximately 20 minutes. Alternatively, take the local Echigo Tokimeki Railway to Myoko-Kogen and switch to the Shinano Railway bound for Nagano Station. This option takes notably longer, around 80 minutes. Once in Nagano, follow the directions above. Much like those in Nozawa Onsen, a private transfer from Myoko to Shiga Kogen is a great option – see below for details.
Ftrom Hakuba, yake the express bus from the Hakuba Happo Bus Terminal to Nagano Station. Once at the station, follow the directions above to Shiga Kogen. Alternatively, a private charter directly from any resort in Hakuba to Shiga Kogen is a great option for visitors wanting ease of transport between the resorts – see below for details.
Take the Hokuriku Shinkansen Line to Nagano Station from either Tokyo Station or Ueno Station. The journey takes between 90 to 110 minutes (depending on which train you take) and costs between JPY8000-9000 one-way.
The Kagayaki and Hakutaka services starting from Tokyo Station are the fastest while the Asama service, which originates at Ueno Station, is slower, stopping at more stations en route to Nagano. Once at Nagano, follow the directions above. For full details regarding travel passes covering travel to and from Nagano, please refer to our relevant page: Japan Rail (JR) Pass / JR East Nagano & Niigata Pass / JR Hokuriku Arch Pass.
From Narita Airport
Two rapid train services connect Narita Airport to central Tokyo:
1 / the Narita Express (NEX) runs from Narita to Tokyo Station. It takes 55 minutes to reach Tokyo Station (depending on the service) and costs JPY3070 with trains departing every 30 to 60 minutes. Once at Tokyo Station, follow the directions above.
2 / the Keisei Skyliner runs from Narita to Ueno Station. It takes between 4o to 55 minutes to reach Ueno Station and costs JPY2520 with trains departing every 30 to 40 minutes. Once at Ueno Station, follow the directions above.
Both Tokyo and Ueno are stops on the Hokuriku Shinkansen Line connecting the capital to Nagano. Alternatively, in winter a shuttle bus operates a couple of times each day from Narita to Shiga Kogen, taking approx. 6 hours and costs JPY13,900. The ticket desk can be found in the arrival hall of Narita’s Terminal 2.
From Haneda Airport
Two train services connect Haneda Airport to central Tokyo:
1 / the Tokyo Monorail connects the airport to Tokyo Station via Hamamatsucho Station in around 30 minutes. From the airport take the monorail to Hamamatsucho Station (20 min/JPY170) and then switch to the JR Yamanote Line or JR Keihin-Tohoku/Negishi Line Rapid bound for Tokyo Station (5 min/JPY160) – a total journey of around 30-minutes / JPY660 one-way. Once at Tokyo Station, follow the directions above.
2 / the Keikyu Railway connects the airport to Tokyo Station via Shinagawa Station. Take the Keikyu Airport bound to Shinagawa Station (approx.11 min/JPY300) and transfer to the Yamanote Line bound for Osaki to reach Tokyo Station- 13 min / JPY170 or a total journey of around 30 min / JPY470.
Alternatively, in winter a shuttle bus operates a couple of times each day from Haneda to Shiga Kogen, taking approx.5.5 hours and costs JPY13,900.
Reaching Shiga Kogen from Kanazawa Station is straight-forward. As the northern terminus of the Hokuriku Shinkansen Line, any service bound for Tokyo as it will stop at Nagano Station. Once at Nagano, follow the directions above.
From Nagoya, Kyoto or Osaka
All three cities are connected to Tokyo Station by the Tokaido Shinkansen Line. When coming from Nagoya Station, take the Tokaido Shinkansen to Tokyo Station and transfer to the Hokuriku Shinkansen heading north to Nagano Station. Once in Nagano, follow the directions above.
For visitors coming from Kyoto or Osaka, you have two options to reach Shiga Kogen via Nagano Station: 1. also take the Tokaido Shinkansen to Tokyo and transfer to the Hokuriku Shinkansen to reach Nagano or 2. take the Thunderbird rapid service to Kanazawa and transfer to the Hokuriku Shinkansen heading south to Nagano and Tokyo. Once in Nagano, follow the directions above.
Private Charter to & between the Nagano ski resorts
Snow Monkey Resorts is Nagano’s No.1-rated tour and charter operator. Locally-based in Nagano, our charter service provides the comfort and convenience of private transport directly to all popular resorts from central Tokyo, the airports, Nagano Station, and other popular points of origin including transport between the resorts.
Our vehicles and drivers are fully accredited, and as a local operator, we are very familiar with local roads and driving conditions in winter.
With the ability to carry your ski and snowboard gear without the hassle of public transport, our charter service is the best way to make your way to Shiga Kogen with ease and comfort including drop-off at your accommodation. For booking requests and charter quotes, please contact us via our reservation page.
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 – Snow Monkey Resorts is Nagano’s No.1 tour and charter operator.
Locally-based and operating all year round, we offer the local knowledge, support, and service that you need to get the most out of your winter adventure in Central Japan. Got a question about visiting Shiga Kogen? Feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s get planning together!