Cost - Starting at ¥ 309000 JPY per person
Powder Skiing & Snowboarding
Western
Jan 15, 2019
Jan 25, 2019

Definition of Roadie:  “a member of a crew for a traveling group of musicians or other entertainers, whose work usually includes the setting up of equipment”.  Well that is similar to what your ski guide does for you on tour.  However we have two other versions of a “Roadie”.  The first is an adventurous ski road trip with a group of mates or like minded individuals and the second is something we drink in the van at the end of an epic day on the way back to our accommodation.  Either way it all makes for a legendary ski trip especially when you get to ski in three different prefectures (provinces).  Moving from Nagano to Niigata to Gunma then back to Nagano you will experience a snow quality like no other.

Your Japanese ski adventure is not complete without being immersed in a culture that has to be experience to be appreciated.  Visit the world famous snow monkeys up close, be part of a traditional taiko drum, shamisen guitar and lion dance performance, participate in a Karate performance, visit the Zenkoji Temple and 1998 Olympic museum in Nagano, soak in the rejuvenating Onsens, taste the local sake and beer recipes and visit historic Shibu Town.  And let’s not forget the night where we all eat together at the Sushi train followed by a legendary night in the karaoke bar.  Where other companies may place the cultural experience in Japan as an option, we include them so you get a totally authentic Japanese ski experience, and the list doesn’t include the hidden gems we have up our sleeve that will amaze you and surprise you along the way.  

RESORTS

This tour has the ability to visit a number of resorts in the Nagano, Niigata and Gunma prefectures.  The resorts have been hand-picked based around our three Q’s criteria – quality, quantity and quietness.  The resorts we visit are dictated by the conditions on any given day and each area has its own individual micro climate so don’t be surprised if we visit the same resort more than once.  Transport to these mountain is either by our buses or vans and different groups are mixed together to fill the seats on the Nagano part of the tour.  The Niigata and Gunma part of the tour has its own vehicle.   The resorts we can access for our clients include: Nagano - Shiga Kogen (with 19 interconnecting resorts),  Madarao, Tangram, Togakushi,  Ryuo Ski Park, Kijimadaira and Nozawa Onsen,  Niigata – Kagura, Naeba and Hakkaisan,  Gunma – Tenjindaira and Minikami Houdaigi.  Drive times to these resorts vary from 15 minutes to 50 minutes in good road conditions.

LUGGAGE

When we leave for the Niigata and Gunma part of the tour there is only limited room in the van for luggage.  The trip takes 2 and half hours from Yudanaka to Tenjin Lodge.  Skis and boards will be stored on the roof and ski boots in the luggage compartment.  This leaves room for one bag each and is limited to a pack or small suitcase the size you would put in carry-on luggage in a plane.  If possible you can store this gear in your AVI pack would create more room in the vehicle.   The gear you need to take is a change of clothes from you ski gear, undergarments and toiletries.  The rest of your gear will be left at your accommodation at Yudanaka to be picked up on the last day.   

ACCOMMODATION

There are two types of accommodation when based in Yudanaka, the deluxe option at Ryokan Biyu and the standard option at Hostel Aibiya and Tenjin Lodge is in Japanese style rooms.

Ryokan Biyu no Yado

Ryokan Biyu no Yado is a 3.5 star Ryokan (Japanese Inn) and is ranked #1 by Trip Advisor scoring an average of 5 out of 5 from over 160 reviews!  Rooms all come with private ensuite/bathroom and are Japanese-style with woven tatami floors and futon beds.   All rooms have a flat screen TV, small fridge & kettle.  Your room also has a traditional Japanese wardrobe (Yakata), which is not mandatory to wear at this Ryokan, although it is definitely comfortable attire after a day on the slopes.  The Ryokan has four upmarket western rooms which are double the size of the Japanese style at an extra cost of 6000 yen per person per night.  They also have two VIP rooms with their own onsen so please enquire on the price difference.  The Ryokan has an indoor Japanese bathhouse (onsen) and outdoor hot spring (rotenburo) and there is also a private onsen on the Ryokan’s roof available for hire for an additional fee.  The Ryokan does not have clothes washing facilities however there is a public laundry a short walk away.  Night-time meals are traditional multi-course Japanese cuisine served by your own private waiter in the hotel dining area. Breakfast (also included) is either a Japanese or Western-style.  There are massage services available, free wi-fi throughout the Ryokan, a luxurious lounge bar and common seating area, drinks vending machines, grand piano, large screen TV, karaoke bar and a souvenir shop.

Hostel Aibiya

Hostel Aibiya is the perfect place to relax after a day on the slopes.  Yoshi and his family provide a high level of Japanese service backed up with western insights gained by working overseas.  English speaking with a wealth of knowledge of the Nagano area, Yoshi will look after all your needs.  The hostel has an option of quad share single western bed dorm rooms and twin share rooms with shared bathroom.  They have a twin room with double bed which is ideal for couples or for those that want to upgrade to the single supplement and there is the option to upgrade to the deluxe rooms with private bathrooms which can sleep up to four people.  There is a well equipped kitchen for those who would like to cook themselves or enjoy the many traditional Japanese restaurants only a short walk away.  There is an in house laundry service available at an extra cost.  There is also a separate lounge room with large screen TV to chill out in.  There are separate male and female shared shower rooms.  A free continental breakfast is provided each day with breads, cereal, fruits, yoghurt, coffee, tea and fruit juices. Free WI-FI is available throughout the hostel.  A gift shop with crafts made locally and beverages, local Shiga Kogen beer and snacks are available for sale.  Experience the tradition of onsen at two local Ryokans by purchasing a ticket from the reception.  Only a 3 minute walk from the train Station with local convenience stores nearby.

Tenjin Lodge

Tenjin Lodge is a family-owned and operated mountain lodge, deep in the Joetsu National Park, and just minutes away from Tenjindaira Ski Resort.  Your hosts, Bo Yeon, Kieren and their staff provide a homely experience for travellers and their daughter Hana acts as entertainment manager and the family pet Lucky is the ever attentive receptionist.  There are two types of rooms Western or Japanese style with their own toilet and wash basin with shared lodge bathing facilities.  Each room has a powerful winter heater with a fridge and free WI-FI throughout the property.  The western rooms are first in best dressed as they are limited in number.  There is also a family room that sleeps up to six people.   The male and female baths are fed by the same natural mountain spring which supplies water to the lodge.  They are not onsens as the water is heated to temperature and the room has a pleasant ambiance with views of the forest outside.  The water is not re-circulated so the baths are operating on a constant flow.  Each bathroom has two showers which run hot 24 hours of the day and during the ski season the baths are available between 5pm and 8pm.  Breakfasts are served at the Lazy Bear Restaurant in house and are made up of either the western breakfast consisting of a hearty serving of scrambled eggs and toast or the mountain breakfast consisting of warm oatmeal served with chopped seasonal fruit and yogurt.  Both breakfast come with coffe/tea or juice.  The evening meals which two are included in this tour consist of Italian pastas, South East Asian and Korean dishes.  We also travel into the local town of Minakami for two of the nights to sample some of the tasty cuisine from the local restaurants.  A must is Restaurant Daruma – Japanese Isakaya in Minakami where the Master is always welcoming serving up some great value cuisine.

Yudanaka Township and Restaurants

Yudanaka in Nagano sits at 600 metres above sea level and is a central hub for many ski resorts to be visited from. The area is well known for its onsens (hot springs) and it is said that over 1300 years ago a monk who visited the area discovered the healing quality of the water and the popularity of the region grew so much that the Samurai would come to repair their bodies in the rejuvenating waters.  The other attraction to the area is the world renowned snow monkeys who have learnt to keep themselves warm in the natural onsen water. Although the town is visited by foreigners to visit the snow monkeys you will find the town relatively free of westerners when you eat out in the evenings as many just come on day journeys.  And let’s not forget the wide array of traditional eating houses in Yudanaka whichserve fresh local and regional produce.  In the past few years the restaurant scene has expanded to include a number of new eateries which have a mix of Japanese and Western food to suit every palette.  A walk through historic Shibu town is also a must with its quaint shops, temples, shrines, foot onsens and authentic architecture.

Includes

  • Pick up and drop off at Yudanaka train station (for Ryokan Biyu customers only. Hostel Aibiya is only a short walk from the station)

  • Deluxe option includes 6 x night accommodation at Ryokan Biyu in twin share Japanese style rooms with own bathrooms and includes breakfasts and two dinners and 4 x nights at Tenjin Lodge in twin share Japanese style room and includes breakfasts and two dinners. Standard options includes 6 x night accommodation at Hostel Aibiya in twin share western room with shared bathroom and includes breakfasts and 4 x nights at Tenjin Lodge in twin share Japanese style room and includes breakfast and two dinners

  • Ski guide (1:6 guides to guest ratio)

  • Ski guides for two days at Tenjin (2:6 guide to guest ratio)

  • 8 x day lift passes and guiding

  • All mountain transfers

  • Free transport to the Sushi train for dinner followed by a karaoke evening at the Ryokan Biyu karaoke bar

  • Transport to the world famous snow monkey park

  • Geisha Performance

  • Taiko drum, shamisen guitar and lion dance performance

  • Karate performance from a Grand Master champion of Japan

  • Rejuvenating Onsens visits

  • Walk around 1300 year old historic Shibu town

  • Local sake factory sampling tour

  • Visit the Zenkoji Temple and 1998 Winter Olympic Museum

  • Plus many more hidden gems....

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Cost - Starting at ¥ 309000 JPY per person
Powder Skiing & Snowboarding
Western
Jan 15, 2019
Jan 25, 2019

Includes

  • Pick up and drop off at Yudanaka train station (for Ryokan Biyu customers only. Hostel Aibiya is only a short walk from the station)

  • Deluxe option includes 6 x night accommodation at Ryokan Biyu in twin share Japanese style rooms with own bathrooms and includes breakfasts and two dinners and 4 x nights at Tenjin Lodge in twin share Japanese style room and includes breakfasts and two dinners. Standard options includes 6 x night accommodation at Hostel Aibiya in twin share western room with shared bathroom and includes breakfasts and 4 x nights at Tenjin Lodge in twin share Japanese style room and includes breakfast and two dinners

  • Ski guide (1:6 guides to guest ratio)

  • Ski guides for two days at Tenjin (2:6 guide to guest ratio)

  • 8 x day lift passes and guiding

  • All mountain transfers

  • Free transport to the Sushi train for dinner followed by a karaoke evening at the Ryokan Biyu karaoke bar

  • Transport to the world famous snow monkey park

  • Geisha Performance

  • Taiko drum, shamisen guitar and lion dance performance

  • Karate performance from a Grand Master champion of Japan

  • Rejuvenating Onsens visits

  • Walk around 1300 year old historic Shibu town

  • Local sake factory sampling tour

  • Visit the Zenkoji Temple and 1998 Winter Olympic Museum

  • Plus many more hidden gems....

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