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Snow Monkeys

The famous snow monkey tours run daily during peak season leaving at 8am and returning at 5pm. The tour will take you to Jigokudani Monkey Park, home to over 200 wild monkeys amongst the natural Hot Springs. The tour includes lunch at Suzuhana Resturaunt in Obuse. There is a choice of Japanese fish or meat as well as a choice of local Obuse wine or sake You will also visit the Zenkoji Temple, one of the most visited temples in Japan. Zenkoji was founded 1400 years ago and stores, what many believe to be the first Buddhist statue ever brought to Japan.

Cost:
Adults (12yr+): 12000 yen
Child: 8000 yen

Kimono Experience

Held in Shouya Maruhachim, this building was the residence of the Yokosawa family, a local wealthy merchant. It was built at the end of the Edo period and was reconstructed and remodelled several times during the Meiji, Taisho and Showa eras. This traditional Japanese family residence with its earthen floors and ‘irori’ hearth is the setting for tourists to interact with local residents and others.

Experience the real Japan kimono dressing. There are lots of colourful and elegant kimono outfits available for you to choose from. The professional kimono teacher will help you choose the best one suitable for you. She will make the ribbon knots with her hands during the activity, letting you experience the real Japan kimono dressing. Following the Kimono dressing will be a origami and tea ceremony.

Shoya Maruhachi restaurant offers a unique Japanese style Obento lunch box for this tour. There are 4 different plates of local traditional cuisine in the lunch box, together with rice, soup and seasonal fruits or sweets. You’ll never know what you get until you open it! Enjoy our delicious cuisine with a great surprise!

The will pick you up for the tour around 9:30am and drop you off again at 1:15pm. This tour is for women only.

Cost:
8000 yen per person

Taiko Drum Tour

Taiko drumming is an indigenous part of Japanese culture dating back more than 1400 years. You not only have chance to experience the awe-inspiring sound of local taiko drumming performed by a local professional team called Otari Daiko Performer, but also play the taiko drum together with them. Enjoy making music and receiving a good physical workout at the same time.

Otari village is situated next to Hakuba and has flourished as one of the popular ski resorts. Otari Daiko performers consist of various members from the elementary school students to the seniors. Their aim is to encourage more people to be happy and smile. It would be a great option to join the tour when you have a day off from the ski slopes of Hakuba.

They will pick you up from your accommodation around 7pm and drop you off around 9pm giving you over an hour watching and playing the Taiko Drums.

Cost:
2000 yen (6yr+)

Gyoza and Sushi Cooking Class

If you enjoy Japanese food and are interested in learning the art of Japanese cooking or in eating true Japanese cuisine, this is the opportunity for you! The cooking expert will teach you how to make Gyoza and traditional hand-rolled sushi. You may enjoy your very own Gyoza and Sushi creations for lunch. Don’t miss the chance to make a cooking class from a professional! The tour will pick you up around 9am and drop you back at 1pm.

Cost:
7000 yen (6yr+)

Local Train and Culture Experience Tour

The tour departs from Hakuba JR Station where you will catch the train to Shinano Omachi. The first event will be the cultural expereince at Chojiya Museum. This building was built in 1890, and was used as a salt wholesale house. It has a traditional structure of pillar, and you can see Japanese traditional facilities such as a fireplace called “Irori”, earthen floor called “Doma”, and a drawing room with tatami. And of course, it has a Japanese style warehouse used for storing salt.

After this you will eat lunch at Wachigai. This transitional house, built with typical Kyofu-Machiya (type of architecture design developed in Kyoto) in Edo period, keeps the good old-days ambiance. The name “Wachigai” is taken after the Yago, the traditional name of the house.

After this is a cultural experience at the traditional old folk house “Shiono-Michi Choji-ya” in Omachi. In such a traditional folk house, you can experience wearing Japanese costumes and having powdered green tea. You can wear Samurai costume or “Yukata” kimono (a light cotton Kimono). You can also partake in Japanese old playing experience such as “Ken-dama” (Japanese bilboquet), “Menko” (game of slapping cards down to overturn opponent’s) and “Ote-dama” (beanbags for juggling).

Cost:
8000yen (6yr+)

Matsumoto City Culture Experience Tour

With 400 years of history, Matsumoto Castle is a National Treasure that every Japan visitor should see. Formerly called Fukashi Castle, it was a branch castle of the Ogasawara family during the long period of the warring states. It is located in the city of Matsumoto, in Nagano Prefecture. Matsumoto Castle is a flatland castle (hirajiro) because it is not built on a hilltop or amid rivers, but on a plain. Its complete defences would have included an extensive system of inter-connecting walls, moats and gatehouses. The most interesting part of the castle is the main donjon/keep (tenshukaku) completed in the late 16th century, and which maintains its original wooden interiors and external stonework.

The Kametaya brewery is definitely worth a visit. Seeped in history, the brewery occupies one of the original farm houses of the area and if you are prepared to travel a little further, you will find it nestled in the foothills of the mountains and surrounded by trees. The long straight road leading up to the brewery is the original road used by the merchants of yesteryear.

After the tour visitors are invited to try some of the brewery’s sake, and are free to browse the little shop where visitors can purchase gift boxes of various blends to take home to relatives and friends.

Daio Wasabi Farm is Japan’s largest wasabi farm covering 15 hectares. It’s natural water springs 120,000t per day that is to enable their annual yield of 150t of wasabi. It is located in Hotaka, Azumino, 32km north from the center of Matsumoto. It was established in 1915 and is a popular tourist spot due to its beautiful watermills and for the magnificent view of the Alps. Its restaurants offer not only the popular soba noodles along with freshly picked wasabi, but also wasabi-flavored ice cream and lots of other wasabi-themed products.

The tour picks you up at 9am and will drop you back later in the afternoon.

Cost:
2-3 pax: 72000 yen/group
4-8 pax: 105000 yen/group

Itoigawa Seafood Gourmet Tour

No Japan holiday is complete without trying a fresh sashimi or seafood meal. Itoigawa city is just one hour away from Hakuba Valley by bus. You may buy the fresh seafood souvenirs for your beloved one as well. Get ready to experience this gourmet tour like never before!

Let the fresh seafood fill your stomach! The chef will choose the seasonal seafood to make the best lunch for you. You will be served with a warm seafood soup and a blow of rice with various seafood on top. It will make your mouth water.

The tour departs from the Happo Information Centre or Tokyu Hotel at 10:15am and will return at 4:30pm. You will visit the Tanimura Art Museum, eat a seafood lunch, visit Hakusan Shrine and Benten Rock and shop at the fish market.

Cost:
8000 yen per person

Tea Ceremony Lesons

Learn the art of making real Japanese tea and enjoy it with a group of friends in a very cultural Japanese tea ceremony style. With a local guide using local tea you are sure to enjoy everything Nagano has to offer. Beautiful, authentic Japanese modern style Café, you will sit on traditional tatami floors and feel every bit of Japan.

The lessons are run in the morning or late afternoon. They will pick you up at 9am or 4pm and will leave back to your accommodation 1.5 hours later. Groups must be between 2 and 5 guests for this tour.

Cost:
3000 yen (6yr+)

Snow Shoe Adventure

Take a nice wonder through the trees of Iwatake Snow Fields. On fresh untouched snow, find yourself lost in a snow wonderland. A new relaxing way to enjoy the ski fields, a new snow sport away from skiing and snowboarding. With your local guide enjoy a nice tea break in the middle of a white forest.

Snow shoe tours are run in the morning and afternoon at 9am or 1pm and gives you 2.5 hours of snowshoeing. Groups must be between 2 and 6 people.

Cost:
6000 yen per person (10yr +)