Exploring Off The Beaten Track Hakuba



By sarah@japanskiexperience.com | Fri, 29 Oct 2021
Exploring Off The Beaten Track Hakuba
We recently covered 3 of the Hakuba Valley’s most popular neighbourhoods – Happo village, Wadano Forest and Echoland – in our ‘Discover The Best Places To Stay In Hakuba’ article. There’s even more to discover though, and of course seasoned Hakuba visitors might be eager to get off the beaten track when visiting Hakuba Ski Resort and selecting their Hakuba accommodation.
If you venture into Otari village at the northern end of the Hakuba Valley, you’ll discover some of Hakuba’s hidden gem ski resorts. These include Tsugaike Kogen Mountain Resort, Hakuba Norikura Onsen Ski Resort and Hakuba Cortina Ski Resort, where a decidedly more rustic and authentic Japanese experience awaits. These areas are not famous for their nightlife or huge selection of restaurants, but offer a very special and unique Japanese cultural experience.
Strolling through the streets of Tsugaike, you’d be forgiven for thinking you’d been transported back to the 1980s. Popular with the Japanese domestic market, Tsugaike Ski Resort offers quiet slopes, few crowds and outstanding skiing and snowboarding suitable for all levels. At the base of the mountain are some of Japan’s most expansive and best beginner slopes. The beginner area at Tsugaike is the largest in Japan, a staggering 1.2km wide. This is a heaven for beginners and families. Did we mention how quiet it is? With long well-groomed runs for intermediates, spectacular views of the Japanese Alps and vast tree riding zones for powder hounds, Tsugaike resort eally does have it all. This less discovered part of the valley is home to some fantastic hidden gem restaurants, an Evergreen ski school base, onsen hot-springs and rental shops.
Tsugaike's rustic 1980s charm
Sierra Resort Hotel – This luxury hotel offers an unforgettable experience for those searching for a tranquil, relaxing and uniquely Japanese escape. With spacious rooms, stunning onsen facilities (one of the best onsens in Hakuba!), private onsens and an excellent restaurant with award winning chef, Sierra Resort provides the perfect setting for couples and families alike. Tsugaike mountain resort is a short shuttle ride away.
Slopeside Chalet – This 7 bedroom luxury chalet can accommodate up to 16 guests. The best part? Well, the clue is in the name! It’s a ski in ski out Hakuba chalet, located right on the lower Tsugaike slopes, giving immediate access to the beginner slopes, gondola and ski lifts. With a complimentary 4WD vehicle included, Slopeside Chalet is a truly fantastic option for large groups.
Tsugaike Mountain Resort beginner slopes
Venture a little further up the valley and the adventure becomes even more rural. The ski lift system at Hakuba Norikura & Hakuba Cortina ski resorts are linked, and being closer to the Japan Sea, these resorts receive huge snowfalls. If an off the beaten track powder paradise is what you are after, then you’ve come to the right place! Boasting what has to be the steepest and deepest tree riding in Japan, the ski lifts regularly get completely buried under snow overnight. This is a place where you can immerse yourself in raw nature and the silent world of deep Japanese powder snow, tracks filling in after each lap.
Hakuba Norikura Ski Resort
Sunnsnow Tall House – This 3 bedroom slopeside property nestled in Norikura is a real gem. Comfortable, well-equipped and ideally located for powder lovers, the house also comes with a 7-seater 4WD vehicle, allowing you to explore and enjoy the Hakuba Valley to it's full potential. 
Hakuba Momiji – This boutique lodge is a cosy and welcoming retreat for those in search of a peaceful getaway and warm hospitality. With immediate lift access, you can enjoy powder all day, followed by a relaxing drink and meal by the fire, in the hotel’s lovely bar & restaurant in the evening.
Hakuba Cortina Hotel Green Plaza – This giant tudor style hotel is a show stopper, located at the base of Hakuba Cortina ski resort. The Hakuba hotel offers a variety of restaurant options, superb onsen hot-spring facilities, a games room for children, a shuttle service and ski-in ski-out access to the slopes.
Hakuba Cortina Ski Resort
Ready to book your off the beaten track adventure to Hakuba’s lesser known resorts? Submit an enquiry on our website or e-mail us with any questions. 
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