Snowboarding and onsens in Nozawa Onsen

Trip Start Jan 06, 2009
Trip End Aug 07, 2009

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Flag of Japan  , Chubu,
Thursday, February 5, 2009

Nozawa Onsen: 26 January - 1 February

Snowboarding followed by bathing in natural onsens (hot springs) has to be the perfect combo. The picturesque village of Nozawa Onsen has 13 public onsens maintaied by the locals who live around them and after a long day of snowboarding, it was such a treat to be able to use any one of the onsens (free of charge) to soak our tired muscles. The village also has a dedicated onsen where the locals cook food. Yes the water was that hot! The whole village is built upon natural hot springs so there is water flowing everywhere throughout town. The town planner must have pulled his hair out with this place!

Besides having tons of character, the next best thing about Nozawa Onsen is that the mountain comes as part of the package and what a great mountain it is. We spent our first few days in sunny conditions which made for great exploration on the varied terrain. One of the runs was 5.9 Kms long, making for a seemingly endless ride down the mountain. It was one of our favorite runs. The top of the mountain had great views of the surrounding Japanese Alps and the village below. We stayed at a place called Lodge Nagano. It was a fantastic lodge run by an Australian guy who had been living his last 18 winters in Japan. I want his job! The lodge had super friendly staff who cooked you breakfast each morning (which almost always included delicious Nagano apples which are seriously nearly the size of your head!) and pretty much just hung out with anyone who was staying at the lodge. They even put on an Aussie BBQ for Australia Day celebrations. Yes, we had sausage sizzle and Crown Lagers in Japan. It was the perfect place to stay and we loved our Japanese style room with a view of the mountain and the ski jump from the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics.

After having so much fresh powder in Hokkaido, we were hoping to get some more freshies at Nazowa Onsen, although we were loving the sunny spring-like conditions. Well Mother Nature did not let us down and our last two days of snowboardig at Nazowa were in great powder conditions! As always, Fi and I made it up for first chairlift and were rewarded with fresh untouched powder. Needless to say it was the perfect way to leave such a great place.
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Lisa Maude on

We just got back from Nozawa Onsen too and agree with you. Was a very pretty little Village and the guys at Lodge Nagano were great hosts. They know the town very well and showed us all the good places to go. Hope to get back there next year

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