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Never mind the powder, we can't wait to get back to Japanese vending machines. So much stuff, usually cheap (especially the beer!), hot and cold in one machine. How do they do that? Especially when you have to wade through armpit deep snow to get to them sometimes, like this night in Nozawa for Jerry Michal? Out of all the things in...
Myoko Vista Lodge in thriving Akakura village at the base of magnificent Mount Myoko is the life-changing business of Wollongong couple Louise Wellington & Warrick O’brien. Just how hard is it to own a ski lodge in Japan and live the powder dream? What could go wrong? Well plenty apparently, we talked to several people who had taken the plunge and...
Post-shutdown Japan travel from approved countries with low COIVD-19 case numbers is set for restart in spring according to weekend press reports. The Japanese government has flagged a limited re-opening for inbound tourism in spring with strict controls. These flag key restrictions to include separating transport and accommodation - independent travel (like popular JR Rail Pass snow trips) would not be...
Nozawa was recently rated by our print issue readers as their equal number #3 choice in the world (level with Hakuba, after Niseko & Whistler respectively at #1 & #2). Why? The snow presumably has something to do with it, when it dumps here it, it dumps! And then there's the onsen, including 13 free public ones which are maintained...
Chisenupuri cat skiing
Chisenupuri cat skiing is a great way to guarantee fresh tracks at Niseko. Chisenupuri used to be a little local’s favourite semi-secret one double chair ski area tucked away around the back side of Annupuri. It was too small, too far away, and too undeveloped to get much attention. So little attention in fact that the lift shut and it...
Sapporo is a city, you thought, not a ski town? Well think again! Hokkaido is the powder capital of the planet, and Sapporo is a worthy powder capital of Hokkaido. There is great skiing at some of the snowiest resorts in all of Japan (which therefore means all the World) right on the city's doorstep at Kokusai and Sapporo Teine. Both...

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