Japan Alps Winter 6 days

Japan Alps Winter 6 days

(subject to change until the booking has been finalized)

Day 1 Arrive in Matsumoto

Nestled between mountains in the heart of Japan, this feudal castle town serves as gateway to the Japan Alps and is home to one of the best-preserved and most evocative castles in Japan. Spend the night at an onsen ryokan inn in the vicinity of Matsumoto.

We will provide train tickets for your journey from Tokyo or from Nagoya to Matsumoto, with scenic views along the way. If arriving in Matsumoto earlier in the day, take the opportunity to visit Matsumoto Castle, the Japan Ukiyo-e Museum, which houses the world’s largest collection of Japanese Ukiyo-e woodblock prints, and stroll through some of the back alleys and outlying areas of the town where much of its heritage from olden times can still be seen.

Accommodation: Onsen Ryokan (Hot spring Travellers Inn) in the vicinity of Matsumoto
Meals: Dinner

Day 2 Travel into the Japan Alps

Enjoy the morning in Matsumoto, before travelling onwards by local train and bus up into the Northern Japan Alps, viewing panoramic winter landscapes along the way. This evening you will stay at a lovely hot spring Ryokan inn set in a peaceful remote mountain village located in the snow-covered region, surrounded by beautiful nature, with majestic mountains as a backdrop. The ryokan has lovely indoor and outdoor hot spring baths. The waters here have long been praised for their therapeutic healing qualities.

Accommodation: Onsen Ryokan (Hot Spring Travellers Inn) in the Japan Alps
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 3 Snowshoe walking in Norikura highlands

Explore pristine winter landscapes with a full day of guided snowshoe walking. The gentle scenic walk takes you through serene snow-covered forest before taking in views of impressive frozen waterfalls, frozen lakes, and grand vistas of the surrounding Alpine mountain range. Transportation from your inn, snowshoes, walking poles and lunch are provided.

No previous experience is necessary to enjoy the snowshoe walk.

Walking distance: 6-7km
Elevation gain: 98mof ascent and 236m of descent
Time: About 7 hours in total, including lunch and rest breaks
Relax and enjoy another evening at the same Onsen Ryokan inn in the mountain village.
Accommodation: Onsen Ryokan (Hot Spring Travellers Inn) in the Japan Alps
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 4 Travel further into the Oku-Hida mountains

Travel by local bus further into the Oku-Hida mountains. En route, take the opportunity to visit a local onsen town and onsen museum located in the valley. The town offers visitors several different thermal bathing opportunities. From here, continue onwards to a secluded onsen ryokan with an atmospheric traditional setting deep in the Oku-Hida region for your overnight stay.

Accommodation: Onsen Ryokan (Hot spring Spring Travellers Inn) in Oku-Hida
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 5 Hotaka mountain range and Hida-Furukawa

In the morning take a bus to the Hotaka mountain range. Ride a cable car a thousand metres up into the mountains to a breathtaking viewpoint looking out over the surrounding Northern Alps. Here lies Japan’s third-highest peak, Mount Okuhotaka. During times of heavy snow, visitors can experience walking along a ‘snow corridor’, a narrow pathway between soaring snow walls in a winter wonderland setting.

Head onwards via Takayama to the peaceful castle town of Hida-Furukawa, surrounded by mountains; stay here for the night.

Explore this engaging town, known for its master woodworkers and carpenters who use local timber and traditional carpentry techniques (without any nails). Or discover one of the local Sake breweries and walk alongside the atmospheric townhouses and Setogawa canal.

Accommodation: Onsen Ryokan (Hot spring Travellers Inn) in Hida-Furukawa
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 6 Hida-Furukawa and transfer to Takayama

Spend the morning discovering secrets of the local Japanese cuisine with a culinary experience at the home of a local resident in Hida-Furukawa. Learn how to prepare dishes unique to the region. In the afternoon, take a train to Takayama where the tour ends. If time allows, you may wish to explore Hida-Furukawa further before heading onwards with a later train.

As an alternative to the culinary experience, from January to early March we can instead request a morning local outdoor snow activity for you.

Meals: Breakfast

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