NAGANO JAPAN
SNOW MONKEY RESORTS

logo_circle
CONTACT
TOURS
1-Day Tour: Snow Monkeys & Snow Fun In Shiga Kogen

1-Day Tour: Snow Monkeys & Snow Fun In Shiga Kogen

Period

December to March

Time

07:45/09:00 - 17:30/18:30

Meeting Place

Nagano Station / Hakuba Happo Bus Terminal

Price

Adult (13+)17,800 JPY
Child (6-12)13,300 JPY

This exciting one-day tour combines a visit to the world-famous Snow Monkeys of Jigokudani with a morning of fun in the deep powder snow of Shiga Kogen – Japan’s largest ski resort! Including lunch and led by a locally-based, English-speaking guide, this tour follows a simple equation: snow monkeys + lots more snow = big fun in Shiga Kogen!

 

Highlights

  • Discover Shiga Kogen – Japan’s largest ski resort! – and have fun snow-scooting, snow-biking, and sledding in the beauty of the snow-covered landscape
  • Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant at the ski resort
  • Visit the world-famous Snow Monkeys of Jigokudani and learn all about what makes them so unique

 

Want to joint this tour from Tokyo? It’s easy to do! Scroll to the bottom for our FAQs including train services that can you use to join the tour!

 

Description

 

This tour has multiple meetup points in Hakuba, Nagano and Yudanaka starting from 07:45. Your guide will have guests board the bus quickly and on its way high into the mountains. As Japan’s largest and highest ski resort, Shiga Kogen’s proximity to the monkey park make it the perfect destination to experience Nagano’s powder snow!

 

snow-fun-shiga

snow-fun-shiga

 

You will be transported to the ski fields of Maruike – one of Shiga Kogen’s many ski areas – for a morning of snow fun, with an activity area sectioned-off for you to enjoy using snowscoots, snowdrives, and good old-fashioned sleds and tubes. Suitable for the whole family, guests who get their confidence up have the option of heading-up the nearest ski run, accompanied by the guide, who will race to back to the bottom.

 

maruike-snow-fun

snow-fun-snowdrive

 

While there, you’ll have time to have lunch at a nearby restaurant, looking onto the ski field. Your guide will provide you with a lunch coupon which can be used to select your lunch at the restaurant with options including katsu curry, katsudon, hamburger steak, pizza, sansai soba, and different types of udon. Plenty of choice to warm yourself before heading out of the mountains and toward your next stop, Kanbayashi Onsen – home of the Jigokudani Monkey Park.

 

jigokudani-monkey-january-2021

jigokudani-monkey

 

Arriving at Kanbayashi around 14:00 your guide will lead you along the forest trail in the monkey park, where you’ll be introduced to these truly curious creatures. As the only troop of monkeys in the world known to bathe in hot springs, the monkeys of Jigokudani have reached global fame and observing them go about their monkey business – foraging, wrestling, grooming and of course, soaking in the hot spring – is a must see when in Nagano!

 

jigokudani-monkey-winter

 

You’ll have plenty of time to enjoy with the monkeys before heading-out of the park and boarding the bus around 16:45 with the tour concluding back at Nagano Station around 17:30 with Hakuba drop-offs around 18:30 (please note, due to weather and road conditions in winter, tour end times cannot be guaranteed).

 


 

TOUR MEETUP POINTS – *AVAILABLE FOR WINTER 2021/22 ONWARD*

 

In winter 2021/22, guests in Hakuba will have the option of joining this tour at two meetup points, along with our main meetup point of Nagano Station and additional meetup point in Yudanaka:

 

 

1  /  HAKUBA TOKYU HOTEL, WADANO @ 07:45

 

Please wait at the entrance of the hotel lobby and be look for the guide wearing a SNOW MONKEY RESORTS tour tag. Please be waiting before the meetup time as the tour will depart by 07:50.

 

 

 

2  /  HAKUBA HAPPO BUS TERMINAL @ 07:55

 

Please wait inside the bus terminal and be sure look for the guide wearing a SNOW MONKEY RESORTS tour tag. Please be waiting before the meetup time as the tour will depart by 08:00.

 

 

 

3  /  NAGANO STATION @ 09:00

 

The meetup point is inside the station, in front of the Information Board directly across from the Shinkansen ticket gates. Please be sure to look for the guide wearing a SNOW MONKEY RESORTS tour tag and please be waiting before the meetup time as the tour will depart by 09:40.

 

 

 

4  /  YUDANAKA STATION  @ 09:50

 

Please wait on or near the stairs of the station, on the side with ticket gates and office. There is no other access to the platform and the station is very small, so it should be clear where to wait. Be sure to look for the guide wearing a SNOW MONKEY RESORTS tour tag and please be waiting before the meetup time as the tour will depart by 09:55.

 

 

*Please note, due to weather conditions and operational requirements, the tour itinerary can on occasion be reversed. This would mean visiting the monkeys in the morning followed by lunch and afternoon visit to Shiga Kogen. It is not common and if required, the overall content of the tour remains the same with the same start and end times.

ITINERARY

07:45 HAKUBA PICKUP: first pickup at Hakuba Tokyu Hotel before the second pickup at the Hakuba Happo Bus Terminal at 07:55. From there the bus heads toward Nagano City and the main pickup point
09:00 NAGANO PICKUP: guests joining the tour at Nagano should wait in front of the Information Board, directly opposite the shinkansen tickets gates. From Nagano the tour heads toward Shiga Kogen with additional pickup possible at Yudanaka Station at 09:50.
10:20 Having arrived at Maruike and begin snow fun activities. While at Maruike, you will also have time to enjoy lunch at a nearby restaurant (included in the tour)
13:30 Board the bus and depart Shiga Kogen for the monkey park
14:00 Arrive at Kanbayashi Onsen, and walk up to the trail entrance and along the forest trail into the park - 1.6km / 1 mile in both directions
14:30-45 Arrive at the park (depending on your speed along the trail) and enjoy observing the monkeys in their winter habitat. Your guide will point-out just what makes the monkeys so unique while also allowing you plenty of time to enjoy for yourself
15:45 Your guide will lead the tour out of the park and back-out along the trail
16:45 Board the bus and begin the journey back to Nagano
17:30 The tour concludes at Nagano Station with final drop-offs in Hakuba around 18:30 (please note that due to weather and road conditions in winter, the tour end time cannot be guaranteed)

NOTES

Included

  • Transportation from/to JR Nagano Station and all listed destinations
  • Snow activity fees in Shiga Kogen
  • Entrance fee to the Snow Monkey Park
  • Lunch
  • English-speaking guide

 

Excluded

  • Shinkansen/Bullet train ticket
  • Rental boots (if required)
  • Rental clothing including snow jackets & pants (if required)
  • Skiing or snowboarding at Shiga Kogen
  • Additional snacks, food & drinks
  • Accommodation

 

What to bring

  • The temperature in Shiga Kogen is cold and could be as low as -5°C to –15°C. Please be dressed in warm, waterproof clothing and boots for snow activities. If required, clothing including snow jackets, pants, gloves and snow boots can be rented at the Snow Monkey Park. Please note that there is limited availability for snow outfits, so if you have waterproof, warm clothes fit for snow activities, please bring these with you on the day of the tour. 
  • There will be a significant amount of walking required (1.6 km one way) to get to and from the Snow Monkey Park, along a forest the trail so please wear shoes/boots suitable for walking on snow and ice. Rental boots (JPY500) are available close to the monkey park, if required. Crampons (metal spikes that attach underneath your shoes/boots) can also be purchased, if required.

 

Other Information

  • The tour itinerary can be reversed and we may visit the monkeys first followed by lunch and Shiga Kogen, depending on weather and road conditions and other factors on the day. We do so in an effort to provide guests the best possible experience on the day.
  • This tour is not wheelchair accessible and may not be suitable for mobility-impaired travels. Should you have any concerns about your ability to join the tour, please contact us to discuss prior to booking.
  • Guests are required to walk in and out of the monkey park along a 1.6km/1 mile trail. In winter, the trail and park will be affected by snow and ice. This walk should not be attempted by anyone who is mobility impaired, in a wheelchair or cannot confidently walk an extended distance over snow and ice. Snow fun activities also require guests to be of reasonable fitness and mobility to enjoy. If you have concerns about your or a member of your groups ability to handle the conditions, please contact us to discuss prior to booking.
  • This tour does not include skiing or snowboarding, nor is there the time to arrange your own skiing and snowboarding while at the resort.
  • The transport used for this tour depends on the size of the tour group. For smaller tours groups, we will use the Nagaden Snow Monkey/Shiga Kogen Express Bus service from/to Nagano Station and all listed destinations. For large groups, we may arrange our own transport i.e. small tour bus, from/to Nagano Station and all listed destinations.
  • While unlikely, should weather or road conditions make it impossible to access Shiga Kogen, we would switch the activity to a visit to Zenko-ji Temple. As we cannot confirm weather conditions until the day of the tour, we would not be able to notify guests of the change in advance.
  • If snow conditions are inadequate to conduct the tour, we will endeavour to notify guests in advance of the day and provide the option of switching to our 1-Day Snow Monkeys, Zenko-ji Temple & Sake Tour.
  • There are a few days in the year that the monkeys might not come down to the park.
  • Infants (0-5) are free of charge. No tour meal is included. Please order foods directly to the restaurant.
  • This tour is insured however as the guest, you are required to have your own travel insurance which covers snow activities including riding chairlifts and using snowdrives, snowscoots, sleds, and tubes. Please confirm that your insurance policy covers this activity prior to the tour.
  • The tour application deadline is 1 day before the tour date at 17:00.

MEETING PLACE

Google Map

Nagano Station / Hakuba Happo Bus Terminal

Kurita, Nagano-shi, Nagano, 380-0921, Japan

FAQ

I’d like to join this tour from Tokyo. Which Shinkansen/Bullet Train service should I use to arrive in Nagano on time? What time do services depart for Tokyo after the tour?

 

The start and finish of the tour are arranged according to the Shinkansen timetable. You can book the following services on the Hokuriku Shinkansen line when joining this tour at Nagano Station:

 

Departing Tokyo Station – Arriving Nagano Station

 

Tokyo: 06:28 – Nagano: 08:06 – Hakutaka

Tokyo: 06:52 – Nagano: 08:40 – Asama

Tokyo: 07:20 – Nagano: 08:43 – Kagayaki (reserved seats only)*

 

*You can still take 07:20 – 08:43 service since Nagano Station isn’t big and tour meet-up point is immediately across from the shinkansen ticket gates. Please ensure however that you come straight to the meetup point as the guide/tour cannot wait for long.

 

Departing Nagano Station – Arriving Tokyo Station

 

Nagano: 18:22 – Tokyo: 20:00 – Hakutaka *RECOMMENDED*

Nagano: 19:03 – Tokyo: 20:23 – Kagayayaki (reserved seats only)

Nagano: 19:08 – Tokyo: 20:52 – Asama

Nagano: 19:38 – Tokyo: 21:16 – Hakutaka

 

*In winter, we recommend that you book this service to return to Tokyo. While we expect to this tour to conclude at Nagano Station by 17:40 winter weather and roads conditions mean that we cannot guarantee it. To be safe, we recommend booking the 18:22 service.

 

Do you provide rental clothing such as jacket, pants and snowboots for use at the ski resort?

 

Yes. Ski jackets and pants are available for rent along with snowboots. A set of boots, pants and jacket costs JPY1000. While we have adequate stock to cover most tours, during peak times in December and January, demand might be too high to guarantee availability. We cannot accept advance reservations nor can we guarantee sizes. We stock a range of adult and children’s sizes we can be tried on the day.

 

How does the Hakuba shuttle service work?

 

Due to the popularity of this tour, in winter 2021/22 we will be operating a shuttle service from and to Tokyu Hotel and Hakuba Happo Bus Terminal. This service is provided at no additional charge. If you would like to join the tour from Hakuba simply choose your preferred option from the ‘Select your pickup option’ menu. If you choose this option, our staff will meet you at the meeting point in Hakuba and have you board the shuttle service to Nagano Station. The tour itself operates from and to Nagano Station and on most occasions, the guide will join and leave the tour at that point.

 

 

Can I start in Hakuba and leave the tour in Nagano / start in Nagano and end in Hakuba?

 

Yes. We are happy to provide this service for you. Just select the relevant options and please explain your preference in the Special Requirements field of the booking page.

 

Can I add accommodation to my tour booking?

 

Yes. We can add accommodation in Nagano City, Yamanouchi/Snow Monkey area, and Hakuba village area. To do so, contact us at snowmonkeyresorts@machinovate.com at anytime to discuss options.

 

We are traveling with an infant. Can we join this tour?

 

Yes! This tour  is suitable for guests of all ages and especially fun for infants and children.

 

What happens if the snow isn’t good enough to conduct the tour?

 

This is unlikely. One of the reasons we use Shiga Kogen as the venue for snow fun activities, is that it’s higher elevation than other resorts usually guarantees that the snow is good enough to conduct a tour. Should the snow be insufficient to conduct the tour, we will do our best to notify you prior to the day and provide the option of switching onto our 1-Day Snow Monkeys, Zenko-ji Temple & Sake Tour.

 

I have specific dietary requirements. Can these be catered for?

 

We cannot promise that all dietary needs can be catered to. The tour uses a restaurant in the ski resort for lunch. They can provide vegetarian options but are unlikely to be able to cater to vegan guests, guests requiring halal and may not be able to amend the menu for specific allergies. If that is a concern, please contact us at snowmonkeyresorts@machinovate.com prior to booking to discuss options.

 

Is this tour wheelchair accessible or suitable for mobility-impaired guests?

 

Unfortunately, this tour is not wheelchair accessible and may not be suitable for mobility-impaired guests. Snow activities require guests to be able to move freely and the tour requires a significant amount of walking – suitable for anyone of reasonable fitness – including along a 1.6km/1-mile forest trail leading to and from the park. The trail is unsealed and in winter will be affected by snow and ice in winter, meaning that a wheelchair cannot move along it. There is also a relatively steep staircase at the end of the trail leading into the park. Guests who are mobility-impaired may also struggle with the conditions. Should you have any concerns about your ability to join the tour, please contact us at snowmonkeyresorts@machinovate.com prior to booking to discuss options.

(Travel Agency License No: Nagano 2-562)
Snow Monkey Resorts Tours
Nagano City Kurita 1015-7, NK Copo 202, Nagano, 380-0921 Japan
Tel: (81)26-219-6256
Member of All Nippon Travel Agents Association
Travel Service Supervisor: Tomoko Kasahara

Recommended Spring/Summer Tours

Ski & Snowboard Deals 2021/2022

Recommended Hotels

Clean Green & Healthy Travel

Things to Do