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Our annual "fancy" snow trip needs recommendations - snow/onsens/nice ryokan in one place

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#1
Space Indaver

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We're coming from Toyohashi. Two years ago we went to a really nice onsen (BIG outdoor baths. Sitting in a hot rock pool with snow falling on your head is the BEST) place near Takayama, then had to drive for an hour or so to get to a snow area. Last year 15 (ish) of us went to Nozawa Onsen. Nice ryokan with kaiseki, little onsens, and obviously the snow was walkable. It was very nice, but the onsens were indoor.

This year we want somewhere equally convenient in terms of nearby snow, but preferably with nice outdoor onsens.

Does anyone know of anywhere? Or should we just try another place in Nozawa? We're driving from Aichi, so I'd imagine places like Aomori are a bit far. So we'd be looking at Gifu, Nagano, Niigata sorts of areas.

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#2
TubbyBeaverinho

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Echigo Yuzawa would probably be a decent bet. Year round onsen town so I reckon the ryokans and onsens would be good. It's close to a lot of different options for skiing/snowboarding
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#3
seemore

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Looks like a fun night any photos of the onsen?

#4
Mr Wiggles

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This is a pretty good question, because things tend to get built up within walking distance to the slopes. That makes it difficult to build a big outdoor bath.

I'm sure somewhere will fit your needs though!
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#5
Gunma Boarder

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Minakami in Gunma could be the place you are looking for. Takaragawa Onsen is one of the most beautiful outdoor baths I have ever been to. It is also close to Houdaigi which is a pretty nice hill! Here is a link to Houdaigi's Snow Japan page and a picture of Takaragawa below. The baths are maybe a 15 minute drive from the slopes. I think there are very near by Ryokans to the slopes as well. I should also mention that there really isn't anything town wise near Houdaigi just some restaurants and a small food store I think. It really is just the skijos hot springs and Ryokans. The center of Minakami which has lots of shops and stores and nice views of the Tone river is about a 25 to 30 minute drive from Houdaigai.

Houdaigi
http://snowjapan.com...nakami-houdaigi

Takaragawa Onsen
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#6
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We've been to that one, it's a bit of an experience. The baths themselves are great, right down by a river, and most of them are mixed bathing. There was some bizarre 1970s touristy thing going on though, with bears in little cages and a number of shops selling bric-a-brac type souvenirs once you've paid to get in.

I've never snowboarded in Gunma but I'd like to give it a try.
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#7
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 Gunma Boarder, on 16 October 2014 - 10:45 AM, said:

Minakami in Gunma could be the place you are looking for. Takaragawa Onsen is one of the most beautiful outdoor baths I have ever been to. It is also close to Houdaigi which is a pretty nice hill! Here is a link to Houdaigi's Snow Japan page and a picture of Takaragawa below. The baths are maybe a 15 minute drive from the slopes. I think there are very near by Ryokans to the slopes as well. I should also mention that there really isn't anything town wise near Houdaigi just some restaurants and a small food store I think. It really is just the skijos hot springs and Ryokans. The center of Minakami which has lots of shops and stores and nice views of the Tone river is about a 25 to 30 minute drive from Houdaigai.

Houdaigi
http://snowjapan.com...nakami-houdaigi

Takaragawa Onsen
Posted Image

Thanks for that. That's a lot like the one we visited near Takayama. We'll still take suggestions if people have them! I have relayed this place to the hive though.

By-the-by, does anyone know if the embedded SnowJapan maps are public? When I open them up in full-size Google, none of the markings are on the maps. Is there a way to go to maps.google.com and see all the ryokans and skijos there?

#8
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What do you mean with that last bit, Sir?
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#9
Space Indaver

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 pie-eater, on 16 October 2014 - 08:29 PM, said:

What do you mean with that last bit, Sir?

When you're looking at a snow park or ryokan's page, there's a little map, and you can move it around and see all the local places. But when I click on Google in the bottom corner of the map, it just opens up Google Maps in a new tab and goes to that location, without any of the pins or info. Are those pins saved in a publicly accessible customised Google Map somewhere? Ideally I'd like to be able to have a map open that shows me ski parks and ryokans at the same time, so I can cross-reference that with the locations of onsens. CSI shit.

#10
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I'm not 100% sure I understand what you are askng, but we made the little icons and all of the maps we put together, so they are not available 'outside' of SnowJapan. I don't know if you have noticed though but if you look at the MAPS tab on resort or accommodation listings on the site, you'll see a selection of different nearby resort/accommodation maps which you might find useful.

Good luck with your trip!

--

This is of course very different, but it sort of reminds me of a mail we got just the other day. This anonymous person asked us to send them a full detailed excel file of our entire resort-related data. 'By tomorrow', they wanted it. Can't even recall if they said please. :lol:
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#11
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Well, at least they gave you 24 hours to respond. More than generous of them.

#12
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Hell yes! It's all data, just a matter of pressing a few buttons, no? :doh:
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#13
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 SJ-David, on 16 October 2014 - 08:43 PM, said:

I'm not 100% sure I understand what you are askng, but we made the little icons and all of the maps we put together, so they are not available 'outside' of SnowJapan. I don't know if you have noticed though but if you look at the MAPS tab on resort or accommodation listings on the site, you'll see a selection of different nearby resort/accommodation maps which you might find useful.

Good luck with your trip!

--

This is of course very different, but it sort of reminds me of a mail we got just the other day. This anonymous person asked us to send them a full detailed excel file of our entire resort-related data. 'By tomorrow', they wanted it. Can't even recall if they said please. :lol:

Thanks! I didn't realise there was a page with a big map. That's all I wanted really. I kept ending up on pages with tiny maps somehow.

I'm looking through different places in Nozawa Onsen this morning, and I found something weird. Two places seem to share a few photos of onsens.

http://www.snowjapan...otos#largePhoto

and

http://www.snowjapan.com/japan-places-to-stay/nagano/nozawa-onsen/onsen-ryokan-jonnobi/photos

both have photos of the same bath(s). I'm guessing one or both of them just googled onsen and submitted those photos?

#14
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I had a quick look just now (perhaps too quick), but I cannot see the same photo on both listings.
Can you please be more specific.
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#15
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 SJ-David, on 17 October 2014 - 07:56 AM, said:

I had a quick look just now (perhaps too quick), but I cannot see the same photo on both listings.
Can you please be more specific.

Sorry, linked to the wrong page. I've edited it. There's the outdoor shot with the wheel, and pinkish-hued indoor shot.

#16
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They are operated by the same fine local people, and perhaps you can use them both if you are a guest.
I will ask anyway to find out.
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#17
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 SJ-David, on 17 October 2014 - 07:58 AM, said:

They are operated by the same fine local people, and perhaps you can use them both if you are a guest.
I will ask anyway to find out.

Thanks! That's a hell of a quick response.

Whichever one actually has the outdoor onsens is in the final three for Nozawa choices.

#18
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Ryokan Sakaya, check their website and you can see.

Please do mention SnowJapan if you contact them.

Thanks
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#19
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 SJ-David, on 17 October 2014 - 08:06 AM, said:

Ryokan Sakaya, check their website and you can see.

Please do mention SnowJapan if you contact them.

Thanks

Came to say the same thing, ha. Thanks for being so on the ball! Would still be nice to know for future reference if staying at one place gives you access to the other's onsens, if you've already emailed them. Could be a nice little bonus.

#20
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Why don't you ask them when you contact them, Space Indaver?







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