This year we only had a small group to travel with us on our skiing holiday.
We took the train from Narita to Tokyo and then to Echigo Yuzawa and then a bus to the Prince hotel. I wouldn’t recommend getting the train again as it is such a hassle getting from train to train with all your ski gear pushing through crowds at the train station.
We had 5 nights in Naeba ski resort. Naeba is about 70 minutes by rail from Tokyo. We stayed at the Prince hotel which is pretty much the only place to stay. The hotel is huge with 1299 rooms and 23 restaurants and loads of shops, the rooms are quite basic, however it’s in a great location and right on the lifts. You can access another resort called Kagura by a long 20 Minute gondola ride. This resort is where we skied most days as it is higher and better quality snow than Naeba. There are 3 ski areas in Kagura ( Kagura,Toshiro and Mitsumata) We walked across the road to the town each night for dinner rather than eat in the prince hotel. The restaurants are much cheaper and more traditional and I would prefer to give my money to the locals.
We then moved on by a private coach to Myoko Kogen (3 hours) for 5 nights (we have skied here a couple of times before) We always stay in the Akakura Annex hotel. The rooms are very basic. We stay in the Japanese/western Combination rooms. The best part about this hotel is the Onsens. They have about 4 indoor and 1 outdoor. The hotel is across the road from the ski lift so about a 5 minute walk.
Myoko Kogen is renowned for its Powder snow and off piste tree skiing. It has several ski resorts linked by a shuttle bus. It has a quaint little town with lots of traditional restaurants.
Our last 5 nights were at Shiga Kogen- we stayed in a beautiful hotel called Okushiga Kogen hotel. This ski resort has 21 different ski areas, it is the largest ski resort in Honshu.
There is only a small town in Shiga Kogen and most restaurants are attached to the hotels. I would recommend for people to get the Meal package at their hotel to include dinner.
The Okushiga Kogen hotel is ski in /ski out and there is only 1 other hotel in this part of the mountain. It offers a set menu each night at their French or Japanese restaurant. The food was amazing and I would definitely advise getting the dinner package included.
On our last day we got the Nagano Snow shuttle back to Narita airport which takes about 6 hours. This is about 1 -2 hours longer than the trains but so much more relaxing.