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Family help for Christmas ski

Discussion in 'Japan' started by Parkesyau, Jan 16, 2020.

  1. Parkesyau

    Parkesyau Hard Yards

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    Hey all. I know it’s still 11 months away but I’m planning early considering it’s busy season. Thinking of ditching the Aussie ski fields mid year and heading back to jap with the kids. hubby and I did niseko area about 5 years ago without the little ones and loved it. However it was mid feb so it just dumped powder, lots of blue bird days too( we saw mt youtei almost daily which is apparently rare and good luck).
    Our kids have only just started skiing about 2 years ago and love it. Hubby and I board.
    As much as I would love to take them back to niseko I know it will be busy plus the added expense of the domestic flight to get up there, so I’m looking for help with some resorts closer and more accessible to Tokyo. Happy to jump on a bullet train somewhere.
    The ones that I have been looking at is nowzawa Onsen, Shiga Kogen the ones around that region ( they may get a kick out of visiting the monkeys) or in the other direction APPI.
    I guess our main priority is a ski school for the kids (for the first few days) good snow ( I don’t want to take them to a rainy resort or ice or slush) I know we won’t get the same powder of niseko and that’s ok anything has to be better than Aus ski fields. I also want a bit of a village where we have some choices at night to wander around and have dinner etc. in our last trip hubby and I also included naeba and tbat was good but unfortunately it was just a hotel( no village no food so boring at night but great snow)
    Kids are aged 11 and 9 and as much as I don’t want to we plan to be there from 24th dec onwards . This is because our shutdown at work I can’t push it any later in jan
    Thanks so much in advance guys !!
     
  2. Saski

    Saski Early Days

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    Nozawaonsen
     
  3. almontyrat

    almontyrat One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Please don't refer to Japan in that way. Any shortened form of the word Japan is offensive. Thanks
     
  4. Parkesyau

    Parkesyau Hard Yards

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    Sorry I didn’t mean any offence by shortening it. I’ll be more careful not to offend
    I was just writing this post quickly on my phone and didn’t re-read it sorry
     
    almontyrat likes this.
  5. Parkesyau

    Parkesyau Hard Yards

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    It certainly is the front runner and seems to tick all boxes just wasn’t sure if it caters to my kids
     
  6. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Nozawa caters to your kids.

    the other one would be Myoko. But Nozawa is a cuter village.
     
  7. M_G

    M_G M_G_ = Make skiing great again Ski Pass: Gold

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  8. Parkesyau

    Parkesyau Hard Yards

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    It seems everyone goes to hakuba but it also seems to me it’s very big and not much ski in ski out with a walkable village is that right ? We have to bus it everywhere.
    Is the snow still ok in December? Gosh it’s so tempting to go back to niseko or another resort in Hokkaido
     
  9. Ozgirl

    Ozgirl Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    December is marginal anywhere in the world. Even high up resorts struggle. I was in Iceland in Early jan 3 years ago. virtually no snow.

    Its the equivalent to June in Australia.

    Just search for the word christmas in any of the travel forums to see previous discussions.

    Not saying don't go. But i think you were on the money with the requirements you were looking at. Snow level should be low down the list because it isn't guaranteed anywhere in the world at christmas.
     
    currawong likes this.
  10. Lucky Pete

    Lucky Pete One of Us

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    I dont think there has ever been a Xmas in Hakuba where the resorts have not been opened and no one can tell you what next Xmas will be like until about Dec 23. That stands for Hokkaido too. Its really that simple.

    The BIG benefit of Hakuba is that there is 10 resorts down a valley, nothing like Niseko which is effectively one hill. Mid week there are generally no lift lines once you are up past the initial Gondola etc as the crowds can spread out and there is terrain for everyone. Happo and Echoland offer a 'village' feel but if you are looking for the constructed confined feel of Hirafu its not really here. If you must be super close to a resort there is ski in/out places too.

    Another thought, the money you save coming to Hakuba vs Niseko could pay for most if not all for a hire car which is the way to get the best out of the valley and surrounds including day trips to the coast, monkeys etc on down days.

    Ski School wise Hakuba Snowsports School has an excellent reputation and Hakuba Ski Concierge is a new business offering great instructors. These are the two we channel our guests into.

    In short Hakuba and Niseko are two quite different places which is great as some people prefer one of those experiences over the other. Either way with a bit of planning Im sure you will have a great trip.
     
  11. elSpike

    elSpike I am a Meat Popsicle Ski Pass: Gold

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    If it is December, go to Shiga. Higher = More likely to have snow.
     
  12. travelislife

    travelislife One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Where are you flying from?