When planning our Round-The-World trip it was great fun to start with some bucket list ideas. Japan? Yes! SKIING in Japan? Could we possibly swing it? YES!!
Despite our modest budget, there were two factors that allowed us to claim spring runs in Japan:
I found the wandering village streets of Hakuba to be a more relaxed vibe than Niseko. The Wagyu beef at the Korean BBQ will live in our food memories forever! Another favorite of Hakuba: the free hot mineral foot bath by the train station and the many onsen throughout town (hot springs bath houses.) After a wet and windy day on the slopes, the most blissful apre-ski I have known is submerging myself in a hot mineral pool, gazing at the falling snow beyond the yellow-glow of patio lanterns.
This trip was our first time in many, many years renting skis and the equipment thankfully did the trick. We enjoyed ourselves, despite lower performance than accustomed to. If we were going to Japan for skiing only it would have been worth bringing our set-ups. This was a very special and fortunate stop on our much longer journey around the world. A ski trip to remember forever, as much for the cultural differences and scenery as the actual act of skiing. To claim the most serious of turns in we would have needed more time and better gear!