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by Yuka Suzuki

Skiing a popular winter sport throughout Japan: Honshu-Ice trees and hot springs

Skiing and snowboarding are popular winter sports in Japan, and the number of skiers has grown in the last two decades. Various ski resorts, hot springs, and winter events attract skiers and snowboarders from all over Japan.

There are more than 300 ski slopes in Japan, and most of them are open from December through March. Many skiers and snowboarders enjoy the combination of hot springs and ski slopes. Nozawa, Kusatsu, and Manza ski resorts are well known for their hot springs. Nozawa is located in the Nagano prefecture and is 207 miles from Tokyo, five hours by train. Kusastu and Manza are in the Gunma prefecture and both are about 110 miles from Tokyo, 3.5 hours by train. Nozawa provides 20 ski courses and 24 ski lifts. Kusastu has more than an 80-year history as a ski town. Manza provides more beginner and intermediate courses. After skiing, people enjoy the hot springs, which offer healing warmth to bodies stressed by cold and action on the slopes.




Hokkaido snow country attracts international visitors: Hokkaido famous for powder snow and castles of ice

Hokkaido is Japan’s northernmost island and is the area of the country with the best snowfall and the best snow conditions. Its “powder snow” attracts skiers from around the world to Japan. The Sapporo Snow Festival, which includes famous ice and snow sculptures, attracts millions of visitors from around the world every year. Heavy snowfall attracts skiers and visitors on a global basis.



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