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    About Niseko, Japan

    Located on the southern peninsula of Hokkaido island, the Niseko ski resort complex is the largest and easily Japan’s most famous ski destination. Receiving 590 inches of powder snow on average per season, the Niseko United is truly the powder paradise that it’s rumored to be. But it’s not only Niseko's powder that’s the best in Japan; for expert skiers and riders, nothing competes with Niseko’s off-piste, sidecountry skiing.

    Located 62 miles from bustling city of Sapporo, Niseko and the main base village, Grand Hirafu are quite accessible for both international travelers and for city site-seers. The resort is very near Mt. Yōtei or “the Mt. Fuji of Hokkaido,” and the views contribute to Niseko's status as Japan’s ski-resort star.

    The resort is comprised of four interconnected base areas: An'nunpuri, Niseko Village, Hirafu and Hanazono, all of which offer a unique dining and lodging experience.


    ...in Hirafu or Niseko Village for the best accommodations and access.


    ...500+ inches annually.


    ...by flying into New Chitose Airport.


    …local whiskey cocktails at Bar Gyu+.


    …the backcountry around Goshiki Onsen with a guide.


    …local catches at Ezo Seafoods (reservations recommended).


    …yourself to a daily soak in an onsen (hot spring).


    ...the To The Mountains Trips: Japan guided experience. This curated itinerary is designed to easily introduce travelers to exotic ski destinations.

    Ski Niseko

    While the off-piste and out-of-bounds powder skiing is legendary, the on-piste blues and greens should not be dismissed either, meaning every type of skier and rider can enjoy the Niseko experience. Chances are likely that it will snow throughout the duration of your trip. However, gondolas and hooded chairlifts make the snowy weather more than bearable.

    Out-of-bounds adventuring is permitted thanks to a relaxed ski-patrol policy at Niseko, especually when compared to other Japanese resorts. Guides are available and highly recommended, especially if you aim to climb and ski or ride the backcountry areas surrounding Mt. Yōtei.

    It’s nearly impossible to get bored of Niseko's on-piste, off-piste and sidecountry terrain, but if you want to experience something else, heli skiing is available. It’s also possible to ski to the interconnected Moiwa resort, but a separate lift ticket is required.

    Niseko dining

    Of all Japanese ski resorts, Niseko is known to have the best restaurants and the Grand Hirafu base area dining is especially noteworthy—as is the nightlife. Here, you’ll find a lot of Australians and more Westernized hotspots. For quieter, more traditional dining experiences stick to An’nupuri, Niseko Village or Hanazono.

    Language + Culture

    Of all the Japanese resorts, Niseko is the best for uninitiated travelers. English is widely spoken across Niseko, so the resort is well-suited for an international tourist. In fact most of the resort and hotel staff speak English, and both English and Japanese restaurants offer English menus.

    On the flip side, Niseko is the most modern and populous in Japan, but there’s still plenty of traditional Japanese restaurants and cultural attractions to appease a traveler seeking authentic experiences.


    To The Mountains Trips: Southern Hokkaido

    If you can envision yourself trenching through the deepest powder in the world, enjoying traditional sushi dishes and relaxing in natural hot springs every night, make a ski trip to Japan a reality this season.

    Ski.com guests will get to explore Niseko United, Moiwa, Rusutsu, and Kiroro alongside the best guides Hokkaido has to offer. After skiing, retire to world-class accommodations at the Green Leaf Hotel in Niseko Village.

    Book your guided trip today: To The Mountains Trips: Southern Hokkaido



    *based on the average of all overall experience ratings given in traveler reviews.