Snow Monkey Park Information
Nagano’s Jigokudani Monkey Park is home to a particularly curious troop of Japanese macaques who have achieve worldwide fame due to a unique, captivating behaviour – they are the only troop of monkeys in the world known to enjoy bathing in natural hot springs!. On this page you will find the following information:
Established in 1964, the park was created as a conservation area in which a local troop of monkeys, at that time under threat from urban development, would be safe within what was already their natural territory, generations of monkeys have now been born and grown to maturity in close proximity to humans, making them very comfortable with our presence. There are no barriers keeping visitors and monkeys separated and due to the park’s long established policy forbidding guests to feed them, the monkeys are non-aggressive and go about their daily activities in a near-natural state.
The experience of observing the monkeys in such close proximity – as they literally run around you in total ease – and observing their natural behaviors of grooming each other, foraging for food, nursing their young, and wrestling each other for fun is truly one that will stay with you long after your visit.
OPENING HOURS & PRICES
The park is open every day of the year* however opening hours vary between winter and other times of the year due to changing weather conditions, hours of light, and seasonal behaviour of the monkeys.
April to October / Green Season: 8:30 to 17:00
November to March / Winter Season: 9:00 to 16:00
*The Snow Monkey Park is open 7-days a week and there are no fixed holidays in place. In the event of extreme weather, the park could close for the safety of guests and staff but such cases are very rare.
Entrance fees vary for adults, children, and infants:
Adults (18 years & over) = JPY800 per person
Children (aged 6 to 17) = JPY400 per person
Infants (aged 0 to 5) are free of charge
MONKEY PARK RULES & FAQS
When visiting the park there are several rules to adhere to:
— Do not feed the monkeys
— Do not touch the monkeys
— Do not eat or drink while in the park or on the trail
— Keep your distance from the monkeys (1 to 2 meters)
— Do not use selfie sticks or flash photography
Want to know all about the monkeys or have a specific question about the park, check-out our ‘SNOW MONKEY FAQs’ page.
ACCESS: WALKING TO THE PARK & WHAT TO WEAR
The monkey park is located in the small hot spring village of Kanbayashi Onsen. To access the park is via a 1.6KM (or 1 mile) path through the forest, approximately 25 to 30 minutes each way. Visitors must walk themselves in and out of the park along a mostly level and well-maintained trail. It is worth noting that the first 20 meters of the path inclines upwards before becoming level. At the end of the trail visitors must ascend a staircase or steep path into the park. While a wheelchair can be take along the path in fine weather, the final staircase and step path into the park are not negotiable in a wheelchair.
Visitors are encouraged to wear good footwear and clothing suitable to the season. While the walk is generally easy, it is subject to weather conditions including winter, in which time the path will become cover in snow and ice. Please ensure that you are well-prepared when visiting the park in winter. For further information regarding the walk in and out of the park, please refer to our ‘INFORMATION ABOUT THE WALK TO THE SNOW MONKEY PARK’ page.
SNOW MONKEY RESORTS INFO & GIFT SHOP
Need assistance while at the park> The Snow Monkey Resorts Info & Gift Shop is located at the entrance of the trail leading to the Jigokudani Monkey Park. Offering a range of services including winter rentals and English language information, luggage storage, along with monkey merchandise and souvenirs including official Snow Monkey Resorts products, the SMR Info & Gift Shop has you covered when visiting the park. Open from early October until late May, 9AM to 5PM, English-speaking staff can answer your questions on your way to and from the park including bus timetables and information about nearby attractions.
HOW TO GET TO THE MONKEY PARK
Nagano Station is the nearest shinkansen stop – on the Hokuriku Shinkansen Line – to the monkey park and therefore the most common starting point for visitors coming to see the monkeys. From Nagano, you can take either the Nagaden Express Bus which will drop you nearby the monkey park or alternatively, take the Nagano Dentetsu (Nagaden) train line to Yudanaka Station from where you’ll need to jump on a local bus for the short ride up to the park. Both the express bus and trains – including a limited express and local services – are operated by Nagaden and easily navigable from Nagano Station to the park.
For further information including directions to the park from popular staring points including the ski resorts of Nagano, Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka, along with which service is most suitable for you needs, see our ‘How To Get To The Jigokudani Monkey Park’ main page.
JOIN A GUIDED TOUR AT THE MONKEY PARK
Based in Nagano and operating all-year-round, we offer a number of group tours that include a visit to the monkey park. All tours are led by locally-based guides and combine a visit to the park with another great destination, activity or event including lunch or dinner. Our tours are fun, interactive and family-friendly. For a more information and a listing of all tours on offer, click on the banner or button below.
1 Day Tour
|1-Day Tour: Snow Monkeys, Zenko-ji Temple & Sake in Nagano|
|Period||All Year Round|
|Time||09:35 – 17:35|
|Meeting Place||Nagano Station |
Of course, we also offer private tours and transport to the monkeys and any regional destination. 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 your adventure in Central Japan and help you discover even more!
Got a question about visiting the monkeys? Click the ‘INQUIRY’ button below or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s get planning together!
SNOW MONKEY RESORTS ONLINE SHOP
Can’t make it to us? Let us come to you! Our Snow Monkey Resorts Online Shop has you covered for all your monkey needs including official merchandise and travel products. We ship both inside Japan and internationally. All your monkey needs are now just one click away!