CultureSnow Activity 1

Experience the Snow in Winter Japan

If you are from a warm country, then your first experience with the snow would be wonderful in Japan. Snowy mountains in Japan are within easy access of the Tokyo metropolitan area, and because Japan has settled winter weather, you can enjoy skiing or snowboarding with no stress. Even if you have never skied or snowboarded,there are many activities that will let you enjoy a winter wonderland to the full! Experience the world of winter fun under the bright blue sky!

Snowshoe Trekking

Snowshoes enable anyone to walk on snow easily and enjoy hiking on snow. You can follow the footprints of animals left on the plains of silvery snow, or you can either enjoy tea or lunch breaks in the mountains. Many of the ski resorts in Japan and Nature Tour groups are conducting a half-day or one-day tour, so why not make inquiries? On night tours, you can enjoy the
mystical snow scene under the starry night sky.
Standard Price 1.5 hours: 2,000-3,500 yen, 3-4 hours: 4,500-5,000 yen,(rental included) ACanyons (Nature tour conducting company) in Minakami town, Gunma Prefecture, offers English- speaking guides.

http://canyons.jp/

BIkenotaira Onsen Kanko Kyokai (Ikenotaira onsen tourist agency) in Ikenotaira hot springs,Niigata Prefecture, offers night tours.

http://www.ikenotaira.jp/index.php

CGrandeco Resort, Fukushima Prefecture, offers English-speaking guides.

http://www.grandeco.com/english/grandeco.html

Snowmobile & Snow Rafting

Small tour snowmobiles are designed for two individuals, and they are available at many ski resorts. From a five-minute trial ride to an hours-long tour, many plans are offered to choose from. There are facilities that let you get a driving license. Beginners can dash down the snowmobile trail while enjoying the wonderful natural view of the forests. As for snow rafting, which is a rafting board pulled by a snowmobile, the feeling you get caused by centrifugal force when you make turns is very thrilling. Kids can also enjoy this exciting ride.

Standard Price Snowmobile: 1,000 yen- (several min trial ride),7,000 yen- (30 min), Snow rafting: 1,500-2,000 yen (5-10 min)
RSS Power Sports Land Naeba in Yuzawa town Naeba, Niigata Prefecture, offers tour plans with driving lessons.
http://tour.kappa-club.com/snowmobile/

Snowmobile Land Sapporo in Sapporo city, Hokkaido, offers trails specialized for snowmobiles and services in English are available.
http://www.snowmobilelandsapporo.com/

Hakuba Lion Adventure in Hakuba Happo-One Ski Resort, Nagano Prefecture, offers snow monkey & Shiga Kogen snowmobile tours. Plans with lunch (from 15,000 yen) need reservations.
http://lion.greater.jp/snowmobile2/mobile-all.php

Airboarding

Airboarding is a new winter sport that was developed in Switzerland. You lie on an inflatable sled like a body board and steer it down the slope by holding the handle bars on both sides and shifting your body weight. Because you lie on your stomach, you have no fear of falling to the ground, and unlike skiing or snowboarding, you can learn to airboard just by attending a half day or a day training tour. Tours are held in these three facilities listed below. Reservations are needed.

Standard Price 7,000-8,000 yen (half day), 13,000 -15,000 yen (1 day)
TAC Tokachi Adventure Club in Sahoro Ski Resort, Hokkaido.

http://www.tac-go-go.com/

Kappa CLUB in Minakami town, Gunma Prefecture, offers lessons in English.
http://www.kappa-club.com/

Tripper in Hirugano Kogen, Gifu Prefecture. http://www.airboard-jp.com/

Dog Sled Ride

Dash down the plains of snow on a traditional sled pulled by a group of Alaskan Huskies! A sled is pulled by more than five dogs that are handled by an experienced instructor. There is a tour of 2 km (50 min) and for those who wish to hold the reins on their own, there is also a plan (weekdays only, 120 min). In both tours, you will first start by taking time to commune with the dogs. Reservations are needed beforehand (minimum of two participants for one program, price for two individuals is charged even when there is only one participant). January 12-March 31, 2013
50 min tour: 6,000 yen (over 7 years of age) 120 min tour: 12,000 yen (over 12 years of age)Minakami Kogen Ski Resort in Minakami town, Gunma Prefecture
http://www.minakami-ski.jp/activity/sled_dog/index.html


*This information is based on data from October 2012.

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