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What to do in Hakuba Japan

Hakuba also offers a range of non-skiing activities for those in need of a rest day or for any non-skiers in your group.

Snow Monkeys, Sake Brewery and Zenkoji Temple Tour

Snow MonkeysThe world famous Jigokudani Wild Monkey Park is home to about 200 wild monkeys who spend their days soaking in the natural hot springs keeping warm from the harsh winter. The park was opened in 1964 and is considered to be the only place in the world to see snow monkeys bathing in the wild. The hike to the hot springs takes about 20 to 30 minutes each way.

Departing from the Kambayashi Onsen we make our way to the historic town of Obuse, home to the famous Japanese artist Hokusai and the museum dedicated to his works. Enjoy a traditionally cooked superb Japanese set menu lunch (various options available) at the Masuichi Club Restaurant and see the beautifully preserved 240 year old Masuichi Sake Brewery and of course enjoy many different types of Japanese Sake. The next stop is Nagano City, home to Zenkoji Temple which is designated a national treasure and with a history of over 1400 years. It is one of Japan's most revered temples and houses the first image of Buddha brought to Japan in the 7th Century. The streets surrounding the temple are lined with lantern lit shops and tiered roofed stalls, souvenir shops, restaurants and galleries.

This is a full day tour departing at 8am and arriving back in Hakuba at 5.30pm and includes entry into the Jigokudani wild monkey hot springs, lunch and Zenkoji Temple costs. Price 10,000 JPY per person, children (3-11 years) 8,000 JPY.

Matsumoto Castle and Daio Wasabi Farm Tour

Matsumoto CastleThis is a full day tour to Matsumoto City which is home of the famous Matsumoto Castle. In Japan there are only four castles that have been designated as "National Treasures" and Matsumoto Castle is one of these. The five-storied donjon is one of the oldest castle structures still existing in Japan. Because of the elegant black roof, Matsumoto Castle is sometimes called Crow Castle. Inside the castle are steep stairs and low ceilings leading past displays of armour and weapons from the Sengoku period ("Warring-States") when the castle was built.

After the guided tour of Matsumoto Castle, a delicious Japanese set menu lunch (various options available) is provided and then you are at your own leisure to explore the many historical sites around the city. Numerous stores and galleries sell fine traditional crafts and local foods of the Shinshu area.

On the way to Matsumoto, the tour stops at the Daio Wasabi Farm which is the largest of its kind in Japan and the perfect place to taste many of the various Wasabi products, one of which is Wasabi ice cream!

Full Day Tour Cost (includes entry into Daio Wasabi Farm, Matsumoto Castle and lunch) - 10,000 JPY per adult, children (3-11 years) 8,000 JPY. The tour departs at 8.15am and returns around 5pm.

Onsens (Hot Spring Baths)

Hakuba is well known for the number of natural Onsens available to visitors. After a long hard day of skiing or boarding, nothing is more relaxing than sitting in an Onsen, easing the pain and tension out of your body. The Japanese Onsen is truly a wonderfully relaxing experience.

Onsens are located throughout Hakuba and are open to Japanese and Westerners alike. Each Onsen has separate changing, showering and Onsens for male and female visitors. Onsen etiquette