Nozawa Onsen - Reviews

Fantastic

Grant
28/03/2018
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Intermediate
  • Rider Age
    51-70
  • Month Visited:
    January
Fantastic venue. Great quality snow. High quality in bound off piste action. Awesome cultural experience. Can’t get a bad meal on or off slopes. Fire Festival crazy. As long as you don’t need all night bars and clubs and don’t need streets full of Western retail experiences then you will love it. Also, the local people should take a bow. So accommodating , polite and helpful !

My personal favourite

Lucas
19/02/2018
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Advanced
  • Rider Age
    18-35
  • Month Visited:
    January
3/5 of my best ski days have been in Nozawa, but skiing is only half of the fun. Nozawa has a great small town vibe that makes any trip there memorable. I've been there 5 times now and will be going back as soon as I can! That being said it is becoming more and more recognised internationally, and every year there is a clear increase in traffic, but you'll find most people hang around the top runs, and lower runs are pretty quiet. This is my personal fav resort, 10/10 would recommend.

@lucas_s_p_

Nozawa January 2018 Snowboarder Intermmediate

Eric
11/02/2018
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Snowboarder
  • Rider Level
    Intermediate
  • Rider Age
    51-70
  • Month Visited:
    January
I went to Nozawa on a group trip and we stayed about 10 minute walk from the first lift. You reach this lift by going on route 38 and making a left from there up to the Toyosato area. Heading up this road will put you at Karasawa and Hachiman runs first. Continue on this road and you will eventually reach the Gondola station. My recommendation is to use the Gondola at Nagasaka station and to the top. If you're a beginner or better it won't matter you will enjoy the runs from there. If your a beginner turn left out of the Gondola station and you will have access to a 5 Km run back to the bottom. Nice smooth supper wide runs to enjoy. When you have had enough and are at the 1 or 2 Km point you can take the other Gondola back down and skip the remainder of the runs. The snow at the time was nice, not crusty, so it was very forgiving on edges. Lots of places to stay and a convenient, but very crowded, free shuttle bus that runs regularly. We went by bus and it took about 5 hours from Yokohama area.
If you are into the nightlife after a day on the slopes I recommend staying close to downtown where the restaurants and bars are plentiful. Lots of shops to look in for local foods and sake etc... We went during the Firefestival so it was packed with lots of folks. Take good grippy walking shows as the ice buildup on the streets could end your fun with slip and fall.

Nozawa Onsen Great Resort

Oscar
24/03/2017
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Advanced
  • Rider Age
    18-35
  • Month Visited:
    March
I went to Nozawa Onsen in mid-March, when it was technically off-season. Conditions where excellent: fresh snow every day, clear blue skies, and warm spring skiing. The pistes and lifts were a little crowded over the weekend, but during the week it was practically empty.

Resort was great after the day's skiing (+ night skiing on Saturday), with free onsen and a good selection of restaurants and bars. Was there for the skiing rather than the apres, so can't comment on the late-night nightlife, but I had a ball!

Video of the weekend: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qAp8WfxcTbM&t=19s

Best Snow In Asia

Fergus Barnes
16/02/2017
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Snowboarder
  • Rider Level
    Intermediate
  • Rider Age
    18-35
  • Month Visited:
    January
Tree at the Peak Street in the Village Boarders at the peak
My family took a trip to Nozawa Onsen and there is no other explanation than amazing. The snow was incredible and there was so much we couldn't believe that it existed. The value that you get from the trip is worth it. I have been dying to go back. To maximise the whole experience, rent a lodge on the mountain that way you don't need to get a shuttle back to the village.

Its Popularity Continues to Increase

POWDERHOUNDS.COM
05/06/2016
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Month Visited:
    February
The foot bath outside Sakaya Ryokan Despite its increasing popularity there are still freshies to be found More freshies Gorgeous views One cool town
We’ve seen Nozawa Onsen change a bit over the years, and on this visit the further increase in the number of western visitors was apparent. The apres-ski culture has increased (and the difficulty associated with getting into a restaurant without a booking has increased), and whilst it has become much more friendly for English speaking guests, thankfully it’s hasn’t become Niseko-ised. A large degree of the vibe and Japanese culture of the town has still been retained.

Whilst in years gone by it was easy to score off-piste fresh tracks, it was not surprising that the easily accessed off-piste areas were tracked out. However we still managed to very easily find freshies in the sidecountry. It seems that Nozawa mostly attracts families and resort skiers and snowboarders, not hard core backcountry types, which is an advantage for keen powder hounds.

The Nozawa Onsen ski resort overview page outlines our thoughts on the pros and cons of Nozawa, and you can also see the Japan ski resort ratings to see how it compares. We continue to rate Nozawa as one of the best overall ski resorts in Japan.

Powder and Tradition

Denabroad
05/05/2016
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    51-70
  • Month Visited:
    January
We skied Nozawa in January 2015. The town was just what we wanted, a true Japanese village, lost of great places to eat once you worked out where to find them. Not much in the way of night life beyond that. We stayed at Address Nagasaka apartments which are right on the ski field just a minute to the Nagasaka gondola. great place with a bar and coffee shop below. Only problem was the long walk up the hill from the town and distance to any of the onsens. The ski filed on piste is short on interest for the advanced/expert skier but lost of great areas for beginners. There are some good runs at the top and bottom of the mountain but a lot of flat in the middle. Off piste means jumping the rope and ignoring the frequent announcements that you are not allowed out of bounds. This doesn't seem to be enforced and the powder and runs in the tress are great. To get the best out of Nozawa you need to be adventurous to find the good pitches.

Friendly but short.

Phil White
05/03/2016
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Intermediate
  • Rider Age
    51-70
  • Month Visited:
    February
We travelled to Nozawa as a group of 7. The village is great all the people we encountered were fantastic. Nagano Lodge was super easy and the staff could not do enough for us. The food at the Lodge and the village was excellent.
There is a bit of a slog getting too and from the lifts and the Lodge(200m in boots). The mountain has lots of lifts (no T-bars).However there is a lot of uphill shuffles getting to lifts and runs. The piste trails are little short. We would recommend Nozawa and Lodge Nagano to anyone who is not looking for 5 star.

Nozawaonsen

Timothy Berlet
26/01/2016
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    36-50
Superb all around

great village- great vibe

Darren C
13/05/2015
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Snowboarder
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    36-50
This little secret is very quickly becoming a favourite amongst Aussies and other powder seekers. What a mountain, what a traditional village. If only the drunken yobbos could leave this alone forever and not make it another Niseko.

One advantage is much of money that goes into Nozawa goes back to the locals themselves.

For a real taste of Japan (minus the tourists) this place is a great bet....but please: shhhh.
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