Kaiya Nozawa Ski Lodge of the Week in Nozawa

Kaiya Nozawa at dusk, great views from the rooms in this friendly cosy boutique lodge.

Kaiya Nozawa at dusk, great views from the rooms in this friendly cosy boutique lodge.

Kaiya Nozawa went under a big renovation just before last season. It is a cosy little boutique lodge with only 9 guest rooms and in the perfect location.

Located just 50m to the slopes, can almost ski back to the door, and an easy stroll into the center of the village and all the restaurants and bars. Great location to take full advantage of the Onsens too, with Akiha free public onsen a few doors up and Sparena Private outdoor Onsen over the road.

 

Other features of ski lodge Kaiya

  • Cosy Fireplace and lounge room
  • Amazing views across the valley from most rooms
  • Large drying room and ski room in house with waxing bench
  • The free Nozawa Holidays Ski Locker is just above the lodge on the slopes next to Neo Bar
  • Funky little Apres Bar in the lodge and free Wifi
  • Delicious home cooked breakfast included
  • Brand new individual showers and toilets and some rooms with own bathroom
  • Mainly Traditional Japanese style rooms and some with western beds
  • Friendly knowledgeable hosts and great vibe

Already proving to be very popular due to its location and friendly feel so get in early. It is located just up the road from Lodge Nagano so also get the full support of all the Nozawa Holidays staff there. Luke, Mariko and the team

Here is a link to look and book

https://www.nozawaholidays.com/properties/kaiya/

Also a link to see some of their great reviews

https://www.tripadvisor.com.au/Hotel_Review-g1120620-d10332813-Reviews-Kaiya_Nozawa-Nozawaonsen_mura_Shimotakai_gun_Nagano_Prefecture_Chubu.html

Magic views from all the rooms at Kaiya Nozawa across the valley to Myoko

Magic views from all the rooms at Kaiya Nozawa across the valley to Myoko

Beautiful Tatami Rooms with views

Beautiful Japanese Style Tatami Rooms with views. Also some western style rooms available if prefer

Fire Place and comfy lounge

Cosy Fireplace and lounge room. Getting extended before this season and an Apres Bar going in.

Autumn Lantern Festival in Nozawa Onsen

Nozawa Onsen does Festivals really well and this Lantern Festival in September is my favourite

Nozawa Onsen does Festivals really well and this Lantern Festival in September is my favourite

Wanted to give everyone plenty of time to plan this year if thinking of coming up to join us in Nozawa Onsen for the amazing Lantern Festival held on the 8th and 9th of September every year. It is a local celebration held over 2 days and for me one of the best festivals we hold in the town.

Much more intimate than the famous Nozawa Fire Festival held in winter on the 15th of January every year.

The first day of the festival is a Thursday this year the 8th and it is mainly an evening affair. The main street Oyu Dori comes to life with street vendors and festive locals all dressed up for the occasion. There is a beautiful parade through the village with drums, flute players, dancing and an age old pantomime is played out with the Tengu and Shishi- Mai or dancing lion and as Nozawa is famous for lots of fire!

The dance is traditionally to dispel evil and bring in good luck also to pray for a bountiful rice harvest. It also signals the end of the hot Summer and the cool change ahead of Autumn then Winter.

The next day starts early and the Dosojin or men in the village with the bad luck years are dusting off their hang overs to march thru the village carrying a heavy “Omikoshi” or Shrine. It is lots of fun and all the locals donate bottles of Sake to them which adds to the excitement and the time it takes to get the Omikoshi up to the Shrine.

 

They eventually make it though at around sunset and it is a huge celebration with all the folks in the village joining in to cheer them on and help get them up the steep stairs…

Awesome time to be in the village, so hope to see you there and drop us an email if planning on staying. Nozawa Central will be open and doing great deals Nozawa Central Apartments

There are so many beautiful lanterns strung up around the village and the rope joins each house to one another symbolising unity

There are so many beautiful lanterns strung up around the village and the rope joins each house to one another symbolising unity

The Omokoshi or Shrine is paraded thru the streets of the village and is spectacular to watch

The Omokoshi or Shrine is paraded thru the streets of the village and is spectacular to watch

Japanese Mystery movie filmed in Nozawa Onsen

Anyone visiting Nozawa last season may have noticed an occasional movie crew and camera floating around the village. A new release feature film was being shot in our little town. It has a lot of famous Japanese Actors and is based on a novel by a very famous Japanese writer Keigo Higashino.

It is a mystery thriller with a bit of comedy thrown in as only the Japanese can do. The name of the film is “Shippu Rondo”. The story line is a secret weapon is stolen from the lab. But as it is top secret the lab staff cannot tell he police so they need to find it for themselves and it is supposed to be somewhere on the slopes of Nozawa Onsen. See if you can spot some of the slopes it was filmed on. Some great 80’s style ski suits also make an appearance in the shots.

Here is a link to study up on some of the courses in Nozawa Onsen Ski Courses in Nozawa Onsen

Lots of Nozawa Lanmarks and Scenery in the movie

Have a look at the trailer and you may notice a few spots in Nozawa that you know. Buna Restaurant gets featured well as does the Ski Patrol Office and naturally some of the beautiful mountains and village. Many locals also feature as extras in the film and stunt doubles in the skiing scenes. They were even a few long term guests from overseas who  had a spot as extras in the film.

The resort is hoping that the exposure will help to stimulate the domestic market and more Japanese will come up and visit Nozawa in both winter and summer. This often can happen for a place in Japan after it is the starring location for a movie or tv drama so see what it brings. The movie opens at the end of November in Japan and looks pretty good.

We get the snow but also the sunny days to enjoy it in Nozawa

Not a bad scene to film a thriller mystery movie in Nozawa 

10 Great reasons to take the Family skiing in Nozawa Onsen!

If searching for the perfect Family ski holiday it is hard to go past Nozawa Onsen

If searching for the perfect Family ski holiday it is hard to go past Nozawa Onsen

The whole history of Nozawa over the years has been based on strong family values and unity. Like many places in Japan multiple generations live together under one roof, and with Nagano being one of the oldest living places on the earth that can mean sharing a house or in Nozawa’s case a Ski Lodge with your family for many years!

Due to fewer constrictions on space living in the country say compared to Tokyo the birth rate in Nozawa is also higher with 3 kids in a family pretty common. So the local community loves kids and families and the resort and village is very much geared up to cater for families from Japan and abroad.

Nozawa Onsen is all about families, always has been.

Nozawa Onsen is all about families, always has been.

Here are a few points on Nozawa that make it the perfect getaway for your family Japan Ski Experience.

10 reasons to choose Nozawa for your next family vacation;

Number 1 The Culture, Nozawa is known and the Kyoto of ski towns! It is still very much a traditional working Japanese farming village with shrines, Onsens or hot spring houses and traditional style inns dotting the village. Many ski resorts in Japan have become international so very similar to other big resorts around the world. Nozawa Onsen retains its traditional unique charm.

Nozawa Onsen is unique it is a ski resort that retains its cultural identity

Nozawa Onsen is unique it is a ski resort that retains its cultural identity

 

Number 2 The Food, we have over 30 restaurants in the village and more again up on the mountain. Some amazing Japanese food and also some terrific western options. Even the fussiest eaters will find some thing the like. You can also eat and drink everything and not worry about getting a bellyache. The water from the springs is some of the nicest I have drunk anywhere in the world. Many famous Japanese sakes use it in their brewing. Can check the great restaurants and bars in Nozawa here Nozawa Onsen Restaurant and Bar Guide

Daimon Soba one of the many great family run restaurants in Nozawa Onsen

Daimon Soba one of the many great family run restaurants in Nozawa Onsen

Number 3 The Skiing , Nozawa is the reverse to many mountains in the world and some of the best beginner runs can be found up the top. Uenotaira which literally means “ The Flat area up top” goes for almost 3 km and is a few hundred meters wide most of the way with a very gentle gradient. Perfect for kids and beginner and is accessed just off the top of the main Nagasaka Gondola. I taught my kids to ski there and trust me it is perfect. Once they get the hang of it can continue a further 8km down the home trail back to the Village! 40% of the runs in Nozawa are beginner level. Ski Courses in Nozawa Onsen

Lots of great beginner runs for the kids in Nozawa Onsen. Kai aged 3 tearing down Uenotaira

Lots of great beginner runs for the kids in Nozawa Onsen. Kai aged 3 tearing down Uenotaira

Number 4 The Kids Park, along the family lines I discussed earlier it has always been a priority to take care of the kids. The resort has built an awesome park for the kids in the Hikage Bowl at the base of the mountain. It has jumping castles, slides, tube runs, two magic carpets and a Day care center just inside if they get cold or the parents want to hit the slopes themselves.

The Nozawa Onsen Kids Park on the slopes at Hikage a world of fun for everyone

The Nozawa Onsen Kids Park on the slopes at Hikage a world of fun for everyone

Number 5 Ski and Snowboard Lessons, there are great options for English Speaking Ski School for kids and Adults in Nozawa with either Nozawa Holidays or the Nozawa Ski Resort. Experienced and fun instructors from all over the world will help your family to fall in love with this highly addictive sport of either skiing or snowboarding. Once we hook the kids we know we have got you for life!

Ski and Snowboard Lessons in Nozawa Onsen

Kids Lessons with English Speaking Instructors makes it easy with Nozawa Holidays

Kids Lessons with English Speaking Instructors makes it easy with Nozawa Holidays

Number 6 The Onsens or Hot Spring baths lets face it kids love playing in the water and it is often hard to get them out. The Onsen baths are a daily family ritual for local families and surprisingly for many of our visiting families too. The 13 free local onsens are the authentic feeling and the kids can get a stamp book and get a free gift from the tourist office if they do them all. For those that want a little easier entry to the world of Onsening then we have the Sparena Complex which has a huge outdoor onsen that is mixed and you wear your bathers so perfect for the whole family. So be sure to pack your swimmers.

Indoor or outdoor the Onsens in Nozawa Onsen are a highlight

Indoor or outdoor the Onsens in Nozawa Onsen are a highlight

Number 7 Japan is Safe, Japan is general is a very safe and clean country to travel in and when you get to Nozawa it is like stepping back in time. In the 25 years I have been in the village have never locked my door and never had a problem. The kids can walk to and from school by themselves and have a snowball fight with their mates. Crime is pretty much non-existent and people coming from other countries find it such a refreshing change. Kids tend to be let off the leash a bit as parents are confident they will be fine exploring the village by themselves.

It is not rare in the village to see kids walking around by themselves without a worry. Teh way it should be!

It is not rare in the village to see kids walking around by themselves without a worry. The way it should be!

Number 8 Reliable snow fall. Most years in Nozawa we have the opposite problem of many resorts, we have too much snow and need to find ways to get rid off it so we can get around the village. With an average annual snow fall of about 14 meters and often getting up to 100cm a night it is very rare that you are short on the white gold. So soft landings and snow ball fights are pretty much guaranteed.

This shot was early December a few years ago. Teh family had to dig thier way out at Nozawa Cottage

This shot was early December a few years ago. This family had to dig thier way out at Nozawa Cottage

Number 9 Great conditions – many resorts you ski in the world are cold! Sometimes too cold. Nozawa due to its position on the globe does not get bitterly cold so is more comfortable for kids. Especially in March and April and we still can have great fun spring conditions then too. We also tend to get more Sunshine days than some of our northern neighbours. Here is some info to help plan your trip Snow Conditions to expect in Nozawa Onsen

We get the snow but also the sunny days to enjoy it in Nozawa

We get the snow but also the sunny days to enjoy it in Nozawa

Number 10 Nozawa is Great value! This is always an important factor when planning a family holiday. Japan is one of the cheapest places in the world to ski with some of the best snow. Lift Passes, food and even accommodation can be as much as half price as say skiing in Australia! Here is an idea of a 1 week Ski Holiday Package for a family

Unwind Week

Total 7 Nights

  • 7 Nights Stay based on Japanese Style Tatami Room with Share Bathroom
  • Healthy Breakfast Included Daily
  • 6 Days Lift Passes
  • Use of all the Village Hot springs

All just 75,000 yen per person Adults ( Approx; $985)

Kids 15 and under just 36,500 Yen per person ( Approx $480)

( Subject to availability)

Almost cheap enough to bring the Mother in Law! can check out some of the great options here Nozawa Onsen Accommodation

I could go on but hope I have convinced you that Nozawa is a good choice for your next Snow Holiday. A ski holiday seems to form a special bond for families probably because it can be enjoyed by all ages and creates special memories for life.

We have a lot of repeat families that come back year after year it is their annual holiday and second home almost and we love that.

Nozawa is not just for families by any means! We get couples, singles, mature, young all walks of life and welcome them all the time. Suggest if don’t have to come in January then better to book around it if can though! Most of our managers and booking team at Nozawa Holidays have had their kids grow up skiing in Nozawa and are always available for a chat or to answer questions you may have. Please feel free to contact us

We look forward to hearing from you and our families in Nozawa welcoming yours to stay in this special part of the world soon.

PS; We have the awesome Snow Monkeys nearby and run regular tours! Guess that makes it 11 reasons to visit Nozawa!

The famous Snow Monkeys are only a short drive from Nozawa Onsen and we do tours!

The famous Snow Monkeys are only a short drive from Nozawa Onsen and we do tours! Photo Ed Norton

Still looking to visit Nozawa Onsen for the Fire Festival?

Nozawa Onsen Fire Festival accommodation Available still!

Nozawa Onsen Fire Festival accommodation Available still!

This week’s “ Lodge of the week” Aitoku still has rooms! It is no secret the month of January is the busiest of the season in Nozawa and especially the middle of January. The famous Fire Festival always falls on the 15th of January every year and it is also in the middle of School holidays for many countries so a lot of families like to be in Nozawa at that time.
Good news is if you are in the same boat and cannot come another time due to school commitments we still have some good options available but yes things are filling up.
Lodge Aitoku has rooms for most of January still and it is a terrific choice just 50 m from the slopes. It is run by the Nishikata Family and Nishikata san better known as “Mr Nice Guy” together with his wife and Mother do an amazing job interacting with the guests and ensuring they have a terrific stay in Nozawa.
Mr Nice Guy comes from a family of Olympic level Ski Jumpers! Yes Eddie the Eagle style jumping and his brother won some Olympic Medals over the years. Nishikata san was also a great jumper and the walls are covered with Skis, Trophies and memorabilia. He is still actively involved in scouting and coaching for the major Japanese Universities.
From his travels competing and the last few years of hosting overseas guests his English has improved a great deal and he always loves a chat and a drink when you return from the slopes. His wife Hitomi san is an amazing cook and the breakfasts in the traditional dining room are always a favourite.
It is an older style lodge but a great traditional Japanese style feel and amazing location just near the Karasawa lifts with a little bar called Rotus Root next door and great Okonomiyaki Restaurant called Tonkichi around the corner. Villa Nozawa is also close by so the staff there are always on hand if need any help.
Aitoku always gets awesome reviews can check some here Trip Advisor Aitoku Lodge Nozawa Onsen
Feel free to add one if you have stayed with the family.
If want to look and book can check it out here
Aitoku Lodge Nozawa Onsen Japan
Rooms probably wont last long over January anyway so better get your skis on….

Aitoku Lodge just below the Nozawa Ski Resort a great place to stay in Nozawa

Aitoku Lodge just below the Nozawa Ski Resort a great place to stay in Nozawa

Aitoku Nishikata

Mr Nice Guy and Hitomi san will make you feel right at home in Nozawa Onsen

Work in Nozawa Onsen Ski Resort Japan

Work in Nozawa Onsen Ski Resort Japan. Looking for motivated people to join the great Nozawa Holidays Team

Work in Nozawa Onsen Ski Resort Japan. Looking for motivated people to join the great Nozawa Holidays Team

Work in Nozawa Onsen, Nagano Japan this Winter Season
日本語が話せるスタッフを募集しています
Looking for genki and hard working staff to join our amazing team in Nozawa Onsen Japan for this coming winter. Terrific village to spend the winter season and enjoy the culture, onsens, and incredible snow.
Especially looking for Japanese Speakers, Native or a strong level and people with working holiday visa. Preference is given to applicants with strong experience in Hospitality.
長野県野沢温泉でのお仕事
今年の冬季シーズンに、長野県野沢温泉村で一緒に働いてくれる元気で一生懸命な仲間を募集しています。野沢温泉は昔ながらの雰囲気、村内13カ所の温泉、極上の雪と、冬を過ごすのに最高の場所です。
特に日本語を話せる方(日本語が母国語の方、もしくはワーキングホリデーで滞在中の日本語が流暢な方)を募集中です。サービス業経験者は優遇します。
第一次募集は7月末までです。
ご応募の方は、顔写真つき履歴書を下記までメールください。
team@nozwaholidays.com
Our first round of offers will be closing the end of July so if you are interested please send your resume and a photograph to team@nozwaholidays.com
Work in Nozawa Onsen Ski Resort Japan

Great town to work in with traditional Japanese feel and amazing snow

Great town to work in with traditional Japanese feel and amazing snow

Train times to travel to and from Nozawa Onsen Japan

The old diesel Train to Nozawa. Not many use this now to come skiing but it is a romantic trip!

The old diesel Train to Nozawa. Not many use this now to come skiing but it is a romantic trip!

Ticket to ride to Nozawa…
We often get people asking us about train times. There are a lot of trains in Japan running across the country and although we know most of the ones to and from Nozawa we could never know all of them. Luckily we don’t need to! This amazing web site Hyperdia takes all the guess work out and it us up to date times for all train journeys around Japan.
You just need to type in your starting station and your destination. Then what time you are departing or even what time you plan to arrive. The site does the rest. As you know you can set yuor watch by the train time departures in Japan so can rest assured unless they get snowed in are always on time!
Hope it helps planning your next trip to Nozawa…
Train Times for Japan

Here is an example of the type of print out you can get on your travel times to Nozawa Onsen from Narita

Here is an example of the type of print out you can get on your travel times to Nozawa Onsen from Narita

 

This is also a great link on handy tips to get to Nozawa Onsen

Getting To Nozawa Onsen

Fuji Rock Festival on next weekend from the 22nd of July in Yuzawa nearby Nozawa

The Fuji Rock Festival held about 1 hour from Nozawa in Yuzawa is an amazing weekend

The Fuji Rock Festival held about 1 hour from Nozawa in Yuzawa is an amazing weekend

An amazing festival over 3 days held in the forest at the foothills of the Naeba Ski Resort in Yuzawa. Held on the 22,23,24th of July. It is just over an hour drive from Nozawa Onsen and an amazing set up and well run music festival.

This years headliner is the Red Hot Chilli Peppers and they will have a big act to follow after the Foo Fighters last year. Other big names include Ben Harper and the Innocent Criminals, Beck, Wilco, Travis and many more great International acts and local Japanese performers.

You can pitch a tent and camp on the hills with a fresh mountain stream to cool down. If not keen on roughing it can stay at the huge Prince Hotel or one of the many little ski lodges in the town.

Lots of delicious food and cool little markets and workshops to explore.

After all the excitement why not head to nearby Nozawa to chill out and detox in the peace and quiet of Nozawa. Unwind in the Onsens, get into some Yoga and enjoy the fresh local produce on offer.

Lots of exciting outdoor pursuits to get involved in too in Nozawa

  • Mountain Biking
  • Hiking
  • Stand up Paddle Boarding
  • Canoeing
  • Trail Running
  • Tennis, Golf and Soccer

Explore the Green Season in Nozawa

Summertime In Nozawa – The Green Season

May be too late for this year but put it on your travel calendar for next year as is a terrific time to be in Japan.

Fuji Rock is held in the heat of Summer but at night is cool in the mountains and during the day there is a stream to have a swim

Fuji Rock is held in the heat of Summer but at night is cool in the mountains and during the day there is a stream to have a swim

Amazing set up like a little village with stalls, markets and work shops at Fuji Rock

Amazing set up like a little village with stalls, markets and work shops at Fuji Rock

Koguma Lodge Ski in Ski Out charm in Nozawa Onsen

You can't get much closer to the lifts and home train in Nozawa than Koguma Lodge

You can’t get much closer to the lifts and home train in Nozawa than Koguma Lodge

Koguma Lodge is this weeks “Lodge of the Week” in Nozawa. Ski in Ski out cosy atmosphere with terrific Japanese Hospitality.

“Koguma no iie” means Baby bear Lodge and you kind of get that feeling you are walking into a story book with the log cabin entry and amazing on snow location. Ski in Ski out is rare in Nozawa and many of them are a long way from the village so Koguma lodge is pretty rare situated right next to the Karasawa lifts and only 50m to the road into the village.

Yoshiko san the owner is the perfect host, always smiling and happy to help with anything you need to make your stay in Nozawa perfect. She doesn’t speak a lot of English but it doesn’t seem to matter and the staff at Villa Nozawa are only 100m away and always on hand to help while you are staying here.

The Lodge only has 7 rooms so perfect if you are a couple of families or a big group as could book out the lodge to yourselves if wanted to. A mix of Western and Japanese style rooms so if get in early can have your pick. Amazing views over the slopes and across the Valley to Myoko from the dining room and the breakfasts are amazing.

Ski back to the door and the connection lift to the main Nagasaka Gondola is at your doorstep. Here is a link to look and book. Koguma Ski in Ski out Lodge Nozawa Onsen

A mix of Western and Japanese style rooms always popular

A mix of Western and Japanese style rooms always popular

Mori san Koguma Owner

Yoshiko san is the perfect host and always ready to help with a smile

Large Tatami Room Koguma

Large Japanese Style Tatami room with wood Alps feel

What to wear on a ski trip to Nozawa Japan

Nozawa is pretty comfortable on a world scale but it can still get pretty cold. Be prepared!

Nozawa is pretty comfortable on a world scale but it can still get pretty cold. Be prepared!

Keeping warm in Nozawa on your next snow holiday.

For many planning your next trip to Nozawa Onsen you are probably wondering how cold does it get?
Well we don’t get as cold as some ski resorts on the planet but you will still want to be prepared as it does get a pretty chilly, which is what you want in a ski resort.

Generally it is between – 15 degrees Celsius and 0 at the top of the resort and -5 and +5 in the village in real winter. This can vary a bit and wind chill can send it lower but will give you an idea. I like to wear thermals most of the season, just find it makes life that bit more comfortable especially on the slopes. You can get all the other ski gear you need at Nozawa Central rentals but thermal underwear is a personal thing! Click here for the gear and prices

Ski, Snow Board & Clothing Hire Nozawa Onsen

Thermals or base layers usually fall into two categories: wool or synthetic. Both have their advantages and disadvantages. Merino wool, is made from a special breed of sheep with finer fibers that make it softer than the scratchy sweaters of old. It is warmer for the weight than synthetic, dries quickly, and does not absorb odors. So you can wear it for a few days and it wont stink!

The synthetic thermals and generally made of polyester combined with spandex for design and warmth. Synthetics, although cheaper and more durable, offer lower performance in warmth and breathability, and can offend your roommates after a few days.

So we use both but if can afford it the Merino wool is very nice and our choice. Macpac is a brand we have used for years and although we have no affiliation to them they are having a sale now so might be time to invest. If not don’t worry you can get the synthetic variety at Uni Qlo in Japan or now in Australia for a fraction of the cost and it will also do the trick.

http://www.macpac.com.au

Macpac is good quality gear and they have been doing to for many years it is one of our favourites

Macpac is good quality gear and they have been doing to for many years it is one of our favourites

If you miss out on the Merino gear dont worry too much can always get some good thermals at Uniqlo may even win a trip to Japan!

If you miss out on the Merino gear dont worry too much can always get some good thermals at Uniqlo may even win a trip to Japan!

 

 

 

 

If you wise