Niseko

With deep dry powder, an incredible four resorts accessible via a single pass and a vibrant après scene, Niskeo is one of Japan’s most popular snow destinations, especially for Australians. Sitting on the ridge of An’nupuri, this is Japan’s biggest ski area and there is terrain to keep every ability excited, challenged and coming back for more. Niseko is a great place to bring your family thanks to plenty of English speaking services, English signs and self-contained apartments.

Difficulty

Beginner 30%
Intermediate 40%
Advanced 30%

At a Glance

Terrain Area

887ha

Summit

1,309m

Mt. Vertical

1,009m

Season

Dec-Apr

Lifts

28

Food & Bars

185

Accommodation

When skiing or boarding at Niseko, you can stay in Hirafu or the villages of Niseko and An’nupuri. Hirafu is most popular with international skiers and boarders, with its vibrant après scene and wide range of accommodation. If you’re looking for ski-in-ski-out lodgings, you’ll need to book into a luxurious hotel or apartment in the upper Hirafu area. Further down you’ll find more affordable apartments, pensions and houses close to bars and restaurants, and if you’re looking for a quieter scene altogether, Lower Hirafu has plenty of accommodation within a walk or shuttle back to the village activity. It’s also possible to stay in Niseko Village or An’nupuri, however both centres are a little removed from the restaurants and bars that this area is renowned for. On the flip side, here you’ll be close to the chair lifts and there are some beautiful authentic pensions in An'nupuri.

Skiing & Boarding

Niseko doesn’t have the steepest steeps, however you’ll love the variety of terrain and the light dry powder that falls across the four resorts of An’nupuri, Niseko Village (formerly Higashiyama), Hirafu and Hanazono. This is Japan’s largest ski area with plenty to suit skiers and boarders of all abilities. All four resorts are connected by shuttles at the base and lifts at the top, and skiable with one pass. From these resorts you can also reach Moiwa, although you’ll need a separate pass for this small resort.

Activities

Niseko may be a westernised resort, however there are plenty of authentic cultural experiences to give you a true taste of Japan. After a hectic day on the slopes, take the time to relax tired muscles in a natural hot spring – or onsen. Don’t give up the opportunity to learn to make sushi or to attend a traditional tea ceremony. Enjoy fantastic Japanese cuisine in the many restaurants, especially in Hirafu, where you’ll also find some great fun karaoke bars. Niseko has amazing night skiing with lights bright enough for advanced skiers and boarders to get in amongst the trees. There are also terrain parks at most of the resorts, with Hanazono the resort with the greatest variety including freestyle terrain parks for kids and a half-pipe. While you’re staying at Niseko you can also experience cat skiing, ski touring, snow mobiling and more.

Getting There & Around

To get to Niseko, you’ll need to fly into Sapporo New Chitose airport then it's a 3 hour drive. Once you’re in Niseko there are plenty of shuttles to get you around and in the popular village of Hirafu, it’s easy to walk around or catch a shuttle.

How Far

Airport:
Chitose Airport 150km

Bus Transfer:
3 hours

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Hotels in Niseko

AYA Niseko

Ski-in/ski-out apartment-hotel with 79 luxury apartments and penthouses. Floor-to-ceiling glazing offering stunning views and incorporating all the services expected from a high-end hotel. Onsite: Indoor/outdoor private and public onsens, spa, massage, gym, yoga room, restaurant, bar, cafe/deli, art gallery, craft shop, kid's club, concierge, ski valet, ski storage, 24-hour reception.

Alpen Ridge

True ski-in/ ski-out access, this property presents the ultimate in premium western style apartment accommodation in the heart of Niseko, offering direct access to the slopes right outside the door and beautiful views to Mount Youtei and the An'nupuri Ranges. Within minutes to village conveniences, including supermarkets, restaurants, nightlife and onsens. Onsite: Ski School, Rental and Retail Shop, Reception / Concierge, cafe and ski locker.

Always Niseko

Stylish 104 room hotel that offers a quality yet affordable accommodation option. Always Niseko offers high speed Wi-Fi and a peaceful Kabayama setting just 10 minutes' walk from the Centre of Hirafu. The hotel offers a shuttle service and is on Niseko's main bus route. Onsite cafe and bar.

Aspect Niseko

The building offers superb views of Mt. Youtei and to a lesser extent the ski mountain. Located in the middle village, Aspect is on the doorstep of Hirafu's restaurant & bar district. The property is fitted with the highest quality European and Japanese furnishings. Additional bedding is on an Aero bed. Onsite: ski valet, concierge and on-demand shuttle vehicle.

Chalet Ivy

Chalet Ivy is a cozy boutique hotel situated in the heart of Upper Hirafu. Contemporary decor with large flat screen TVs and luxury Japanese brand amenities with a fine natural spring onsen onsite. Onsite ski concierge, 2 restaurants, apres lounge, gym, spa and onsen.

Deep Tracks Apartments

Deep Tracks - 100m walk to the main gondola with ski-in access. Quality Australian designed apartments with modern interiors and furniture. Ski Storage plus heated boot storage included at base. Onsite laundry facilities, drying room, ski tuning room.

Ezo 365

Completed in 2008, this community of 7 four bedroom houses is a reflection of Niseko-Hirafu's year round seasonal beauty in an excellent village location. These houses are located on the Village shuttle route and in close proximity to a range of dining options. Offering premium standard designer furnishings with a spacious, open plan kitchen/dining area featuring European appliances and an Espresso Machine, each property also has a large Living room with fireplace, home office (with high speed internet) and home theatre system. Ski Storage plus heated boot storage included at base.

First Tracks Apartments

Genuine ski-in/ski-out apartments next to restaurants. First class apartments with spacious layouts and Western designer interiors and furnishings. Ski Storage plus heated boot storage included. Onsite laundry facilities, drying room, ski tuning room.

Forest Estate

Comprised of five luxury homes, Forest Estate offers the romance of a mountain retreat nestled amongst native trees in the centre of Hirafu Village. The three metre wide windows allow you to experience the breathtaking vistas of Mt. Yotei and the surrounding landscape. Onsite laundry, wifi.

Freshwater Apartments

The Freshwater apartments are luxurious in design with a fusion of western and Japanese interiors. They are the ideal retreat for couples and families looking for deluxe accommodation in Niseko. The Freshwater is located on the main street of Hirafu with a flat 1 minute walk to the shuttle bus stop, and a 6 minute flat walk to the Family Run ski slope. Restaurants, bars and convenience stores are all within a 2 minute walk. Onsite wifi, washing machine and dryer and secure ski/drying area with private lockers.

Full Circle

A boutique complex with unique design, these ultra-modern apartments are conveniently located in the heart of Hirafu within minutes of restaurants, shops, supermarket and the closest chairlift. A small block of four, offering contemporary 1, 2 and 3 bedroom apartments, thoughtfully appointed with the latest furnishings and appliances to ensure guest comfort and enjoyment. Onsite complimentary wifi, in-room washer and dryer, in-room safe.

Gondola Chalets

One of the most enviable locations in Hirafu, situated just below the gondola with views of the Hirafu Kogen ski area. Apartments feature full kitchens, satellite TV and internet, high-end fit and finish. Onsite ski storage, drying room and reception.

Greystone

This brand new house boasts 7 bedrooms over 3 floors with 7 bathrooms of which 2 are large private onsens with hinoki wood finish. There are 3 ensuited bedrooms along with private lounge areas for those looking to unwind in their own personal space. Onsite laundry, free wi-fi.

Hangetsu Apartments

Built in 2010, these 1 and 2 bedroom apartments are located in the lower village near the Yukoro Onsen, featuring comfortable open plan layouts and large picture windows to maximize appreciation of the surrounding nature. Onsite wifi, ski valet, laundry.

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