Enjoy Duty-Free Shopping in Nagano!

March 17th, 2015

 Now you can purchase all merchandise duty-free in Japan, including consumables such as sweets, alcoholic beverages, cosmetics and drugs. There are 88 duty-free shops in Nagano, where you can enjoy duty-free shopping.

Please visit the following JTA websites for more details.


Shopping Guide Brochure:



Japan Tax-free Shopping Guide:



Tax-free Shop List: http://tax-freeshop.jnto.go.jp/eng/shop-list.php?location=20&lat=&lng=&keyword=&=%E3%82%AF%E3%82%A8%E3%83%AA%E9%80%81%E4%BF%A1 



Duty-Free Shop Signs

Look for these signs for duty-free shops, and enjoy duty-free shopping!  


Beloved Items of Oshōnin-Sama

February 16th, 2015

 Zenkōji Gokaichō Commemoration Event

 (Zenkōji Gokaichō: 5 April 2015― 31 May)


Zenkōji’s 121st “Takatsukasa Seigyoku Shōnin” is respectfully and fondly known by many as “Oshōnin-Sama”.  Zenkōji Shōnin, the abbess of Daihongan, carries on the traditions of Daihongan, which shares its foundation and history with Zenkōji. Various items associated with the house of Takatsukasa which have been donated to Suzaka City by Oshōnin-Sama will be shown during the Zenkōji Gokaichō event.


From 14 March 2015 → 31 May

Suzaka Classic Museum

Open every day during the event period.


Hours:  9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Admission:  ¥300 (20% discount for groups of 20 or more visitors)

Free for children 15 and younger.


15 min. via Nagano Dentetsu express train from JR Nagano Station.

5 min. walk from Suzaka Station.


A shuttle bus service will be provided during the period of the Zenkōji Gokaichōevent to transport visitors between Zenkōji and Suzaka / Obuse.


Contact: Suzaka Tourist Association, TEL 026-215-2225

Sponsor: Executive Committee of the Beloved Items of Oshōnin-Sama

In Cooperation With: Daihonzan Zenkōji Daihongan







【Nagano Prefecture’s Official Tourism Email Newsletter】Enjoy spring in Nagano!

January 29th, 2015



     Nagano Prefecture’s Official Tourism Mail Magazine Vol. 3

                     January 29, 2015

           Issued by: International Tourism Promotion Office,

                    Nagano Prefecture




You received this email magazine because we exchanged our business cards with you.


Happy New Year! I would appreciate your continued interest in Nagano Prefecture in this new year.


Hello, how are you?

Nagano is in the height of winter sports season right now. Today I would like to bring spring recommendations to you from March to May!

In the spring, cherry and many other blossoms and flowers will be waiting for your visit, blooming in many colors,

Some ski resorts are open until early May. Please enjoy skiing and snowboarding in the mountains, and viewing cherry blossoms in the town, thus experiencing both winter and spring during one trip in Japan!

I have other spring highlights too. Please don’t miss them!



 Table of Contents 


 1 Blossoms and Flowers in Nagano


 2 Ski Resorts and Snow Experiences in Spring


 3 Spring Events


 4 New Shinkansen Station Opens! Iiyama Station and the Surrounding




         ★1★ Blossoms and Flowers in Nagano


━━━◆◇ Cherry Blossoms ◆◇━━━

 □■□Takato Historic Castle Site□■□ Mid-April

Takato’s cherry blossoms are smaller and rosier than common species, and called ”the cherry blossoms in the whole country.” Many people from both inside and outside Japan visit Takato to enjoy cherry blossoms on 1,500 trees.

http://takato-inacity.jp/h27/ (in English, Japanese, Simplified and Traditional Chinese)


 □■□Matsumoto Castle□■□ Mid- to late April

Matsumoto Castle was built in pitch black during the Warring States period. You can enjoy the contrast between Its dark and stately outline and soft, pinkish cherry blossoms only in Matsumoto, including the view of the Northern Alps still capped with remaining snow in the background. At night the castle and blossoms are illuminated by light, and look dreamily beautiful.

http://youkoso.city.matsumoto.nagano.jp/spot/?page_id=341 (in Japanese only)

http://welcome.city.matsumoto.nagano.jp/contents03+index.id+3.htm (in English, French, German, Korean, Simplified and Traditional Chinese, Russian)


 □■□Garyu Park□■□ Mid- to late April

Garyu Park has been chosen as one of Japan’s Top 100 Cherry Blossom Spots. The blossoms reflected on the pond in the park are also a glorious sight.

Information Sheet


 □■□Kozenji□■□ Mid-April

Their famous weeping cherry blossoms are lit up at night, creating an atmosphere of subtle and profound beauty.

http://www.kankou-komagane.com/spot/inspection2.php?id=154&c_id=1&cj_id=4 (in English, Japanese, Korean, Simplified and Traditional Chinese, Thai)


━━━◆◇ Canola Blossoms ◆◇━━━

 □■□Nanohana Park in Iiyama□■□ Late April to early May

Nanohana (Canola blossom) Park is covered with a brilliant yellow color of canola blossoms as far as you can see. The park is a main venue of the Canola Blossom Festival is in Iiyama, holding various enjoyable events.

http://www.iiyama-ouendan.net/sightseeing/2011/09/698.php (in English, Japanese, Korean, Simplified and Traditional Chinese)

Information Sheet


━━━◆◇ Wasabi Flowers ◆◇━━━

 □■□Daio Wasabi Farm□■□ Mid-March to early May

A wasabi radish is a must-have to enjoy sushi and sashimi in Japan. Please enjoy pure white wasabi flowers raised in clear fresh water.

Information Sheet


━━━◆◇ Apricot Blossoms ◆◇━━━

 □■□Apricot Village in Chikuma City□■□ Early to mid-April

Apricot trees bloom in a pale pink color, just like cherry trees. Chikuma City is well-known as an Apricot Village of Japan. The legend says a princess who married into the Sanada family brought seedlings of apricot from home to remember her hometown.

Information Sheet




      ☆2☆ Ski Resorts and Snow Experiences in Spring


Do not give up on it this season!  Some ski resorts are still open in Nagano until early May! Those who do not care for a wintry weather can still enjoy skiing and snowboarding under the warm spring sunshine.

You don’t care for rigorous exercises? Then why don’t you go to see breathtaking snow walls?


Ski Resorts Operating until Early May


 ●○●Hakuba Valley●○● 

http://www.hakubavalley.jp/winter/ski.html (in English, Japanese, Korean, Simplified and Traditional Chinese)


 ●○●Shiga Highlands●○● 

http://www.shigakogen-ski.com/ (in Japanese only)

http://shiga.whitesnow.jp/ebook/ebook6/_SWF_Window.html?pagecode= (in English)


●○●Nozawa Onsen Snow Resort●○● 

http://www.nozawaski.com/ (in English, Japanese, Simplified and Traditional Chinese)


Search your hotel in Hakuba Valley, Shiga Highlands and Nozawa Onsen using the website below!


http://www.snowlove.net/japan/ (in English)




Snow Walls are a favorite snow experience for visitors from overseas!!


 ●○●Snow Walls on Tateyama-Kurobe Alpine Route●○●April 16 to late June

Let’s walk through the 20m-high snow walls! We recommend you enter the route from the Toyama side, walk through the snow walls, visit Kurobe Dam, one of the largest hydroelectric dams in Japan, and exit to the Nagano side. A luggage delivery service is available from your hotel or a station to your next hotel or station.

http://www.alpen-route.com/ (in English, Japanese, Korean, Simplified and Traditional Chinese, Thai)


 ●○●Snow Corridor on Mt. Norikura●○● Late April to late June

If you are planning to be in Matsumoto, the snow corridor on Mt. Norikura is within an easy access. Please also enjoy Kamikochi and Shirahone Hot Spring, famous for its milk white hot spring water.

http://www.alpico.co.jp/access/kamikochi/haruyama/ (in Japanese only)

http://www.go-nagano.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/norikura-general-info.pdf (in English)




           ★3★ Spring Events


 ◆◇◆Gokaicho Festival in Zenkoji Temple◆◇◆

Zenkoji’s Gokaicho Festival is an occasion of every seventh year to exhibit Maedachi Honzon, the replica of the hidden main statue, in the Main Hall. This festival is held from April 5 to May 31 of this spring in the Buddhist city of Nagano. Please come and join us to experience new blessed relationships with Buddha.

http://www.gokaicho.com/ (in English, Japanese, Korean, Simplified and Traditional Chinese)


 ◆◇◆Kamikochi Opening Ceremony◆◇◆

Kamikochi, closed during the winter season, is planned to open for visitors on April 17 this year, and the opening ceremony is held on April 27. The ceremony starts with a Shinto ritual to pray for the safety and prosperity of the mountains, followed by the Lion Dance, drum performances and treating visitors with sake.

http://www.kamikochi.or.jp/ (in English, Japanese, Korean, Simplified and Traditional Chinese)


 ◆◇◆Saku Hot Air Balloon Festival◆◇◆

2015 Japan Hot Air Balloon Championships will be held in Saku, with Top-notch balloon pilots gathering from all over Japan, waging hot battles against each other. There will be balloon ride opportunities and fun family events!

http://www.city.saku.nagano.jp/kankou-k/sightseen/index.html (in Japanese)

http://www.go-nagano.net/modules/contents07/index.php?id=1&mode=disdetailsisetu&cityid=17&junleid=13&indexid=5&kubuncode=7 (in English)


◆◇◆One Thousand Hina Dolls on Thirty Steps◆◇◆

March 3 is a special day for girls in Japan, when we display hina dolls dressed in traditional kimono to pray healthy growth of girls. Please visit Suzaka between January and April, where you can meet 6,000 hina dolls made between the Edo era (17~19 centuries) and now.

http://www.culture-suzaka.or.jp/hinamatsuri/ (in Japanese only)

Information Sheet 


 ◆◇◆Strawberry Picking◆◇◆

Go Visit Miharashi Farm where you can enjoy strawberry picking from January to June. Please experience all-you-can-eat fresh strawberries, soba noodle making, tofu making, a buffet-style restaurant and a hot spring in Miharashi Farm!

http://miharashi-farm.com/ (in English, Japanese, Korean, Simplified and Traditional Chinese)

Information Sheet 




4New Shinkansen Station Opens! Iiyama Station and the Surrounding Areas


The Shinkansen Line currently called Nagano Shinkansen connects Tokyo and Nagano. This line will be extended to Kanazawa on March 14, 2015, changing its name to Hokuriku Shinkansen.

With the extension of the line, there will be a new Shinkansen station in Iiyama, Nagano, the next stop after Nagano Station. Iiyama will be only a two-hour Shinkansen ride away from Tokyo, where you can enjoy fabulous natural beauty and various experiences.


Recommended fun sites and experiences near Iiyama Station;

♪Iiyama Nanohana (canola blossom) Park (late April to early May)

♪Hiking on Shin’etsu Trails

♪Yoga in the woods

Sake tasting in sake breweries

♪Snowshoeing (until early April)

♪Canoeing and rafting


Please visit the website of the Shinshu Iiyama Tourism Bureau for more details:

http://www.iiyama-ouendan.net/ (in English, Japanese, Korean, Simplified and Traditional Chinese)


+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+ ~One last thing

In 2014 we went though many things in Nagano; a huge typhoon, eruption of Mt. Ontake, earthquake in Hakuba, which were not easy for us.

However, there are almost no effects of these disasters left in visitor’s favorite destinations in Nagano. People in the affected areas are doing well, and doing a good job welcoming visitors so that they can have a great stay in Nagano!


Please look forward to the next newsletter with summer information from June to August!




    Nagano Prefecture’s Official Tourism Guide “GO! Nagano”

      ・・・We provide tourism information for you in English,

  Korean, Simplified and Traditional Chinese, and Thai!

         Visit the site for various information including

               model courses.






  Nagano Prefecture’s Official Tourism Email Newsletter (Published quarterly)

   Edited by: International Tourism Promotion Office, Nagano Prefecture

   TEL+81-26-235-7252  FAX+81-26-235-7257


   URL : http://www.go-nagano.net/



If you do not wish to receive our newsletter, please send us an email and let us know!

Nagano Snow Resort Pass is now available!

December 22nd, 2014

A Nagano Snow Resort Pass started last season, and it turned out very popular. This season, they have come back again!

If you plan to visit some of the popular tourist’s sites in Nagano including Hakuba, Jigokudani Snow Monkey Park, Togakushi, Nozawa Onsen and Zenkoji, purchase this all-you-can-ride pass and save money! With this 5,000-yen Two-Day Pass (2,500 yen for children), you can get on and off anywhere on the buses and trains in the designated areas.

During your ski vacation, please also enjoy visiting hot-spring-loving monkeys, nationally treasured Zenkoji Temple, hot springs, and downtown Nagano!  



Visit the following website for more details:


Dear Traveler,

December 19th, 2014

Hakuba Happo-one Ski Resort opened on 5th December 2014.

We are doing alright! “GENKI DESU” Our little ski village was shaken up a month ago, some houses were badly affected and residents injured.

The Valley has two sides, on the opposing side of the ski resort to the east lies the “Nagano-ken Kamishiro Fault Line which caused the majority of damage. In some parts of the world earthquakes & volcanoes are unknown. In Japan natural disasters, earthquakes included are a part of life here. Living with the facts we cannot change local residents in Hakuba pulled together & with tremendous effort our clean up and rescue operations were able to recover and relocate those worse affected areas.

A week and a half after it snowed in Hakuba.

Our lifts, hotels and other building structures have been thoroughly checked and maintained in preparation for the season. Thank you for your messages of sympathy & support.

With the understanding and acknowledgment that Hakuba is a small ski town in a big mountain valley, we welcome 2014-2015 ski season.

Our hearts are open & we endeavor to do our best and will continue to have a positive outlook in the face of adversity.


Happo-one Ski Resort

Message from Mayor of Hakuba Village (English)

Message from Mayor of Hakuba Village (Japanese)

Hakuba Valley’s fantastic ski season has already come!

December 16th, 2014

First of all, we would like to say thank you for all your sincere concern about the earthquake.

Indeed, only minor part of the village was damaged by the earthquake. All the ski resorts have been inspected thoroughly after the earthquake. No apparent damage at any of the lifts or other facilities. We have successfully repaired those minor damages and confirmed the safety before the opening. It is promised to be a wonderful ski season ahead.

Due to the cold weather, regular snowfalls appeared over last week what results in plenty of fresh snow on slopes now. The upper slopes of Happo-one, Tsugaike Kogen, Goryu and Hakuba 47 ski resorts opened last weekend. It’s difficult to miss with lots of the upper slopes of the ski resorts now with a nice white dusting of a cover.

The weather outlook for the coming week is for the cold weather to continue, enabling snowmaking systems to fire and offering the chance for more slopes to open. All the ski resorts and entire slopes are expected to be opened after mid of Dec. Plenty of fresh powder on the slopes is waiting for you to come and enjoy.

Imagining yourself skiing down the slopes? Book your winter escape and grab your ski or snowboard equipment to visit Hakuba now!

Hakuba Valley is looking forward for your visit.

By Nessa Pang 

Read the rest of this entry »

Currency Exchange Booths Have Opened in Nozawa Onsen Snow Resort!

December 16th, 2014

On December 15, 2014, foreign currency exchange booths opened in Nozawa Onsen Snow Resort. Please have even more fun in Nozawa Onsen with 100% natural powder!


Available currencies:

US dollar (USD)

Australian dollar (AUD)

Euro (EUR)

Singapore dollar (SGD)

Chinese yuan (CNY)

New Taiwan dollar (TWD)



Ticket counter at Nagasaka Gondola Station

Nozawa Onsen Tourism Association Information Center


Please note:

Please bring your passport.

Exchange is done only from foreign currencies to Japanese yen. Please understand that they do not exchange Japanese yen to other currencies.

One transaction for one person must remain under 100,000 yen.

Please check the exchange rate of the day at the exchange booths.

The exchange rate is updated each day at 12:00 noon on weekdays.

The exchange booths will close at the end of March 2015.


Please visit the Nozawa Onsen Tourism Association site below for more details:


Full-blown ski season is here!

December 8th, 2014



           Nagano Prefecture’s Official Tourism Email Newsletter Extra Issue

                                               December 22, 2014

                  Issued by: International Tourism Promotion Office,

Nagano Prefecture




You received this email newsletter because we exchanged our business cards

with you.


All-out ski season has finally come to Nagano!

An earthquake hit the northern part of Nagano on Saturday, November 22, but at all ski areas in Hakuba Village, Otari Village and Omachi City near the epicenter, visual and mechanical inspections have been done, and none of the ski runs have any problems.

It started snowing on December 4, and many ski resorts in Nagano have already opened or pre-opened.

Let’s enjoy the winter in Nagano!


Ski resort information: http://www.snowlove.net/japan/


The ski areas in Hakuba Valley are planning to open as listed below:

Sanosaka Snow Resort (+81-261-75-2452): Open.


Hakuba Goryu Snow Resort (+81-261-75-2101): Open.


Hakuba 47 Winter Sports Park (+81-261-75-3533): Open.


Hakuba Happo-One Snow Resort (+81-261-72-3066): Open.


Hakuba Iwatake Snow Field (+81-261-72-2474): Open.


Tsugaike Kogen Ski Resort (+81-261-83-2515): Open.


Hakuba Norikura Ski Resort (+81-261-82-3187): Open.

 http://www.hakubanorikura.jp/ (mostly in Japanese)

Hakuba Cortina Ski Resort (+81-261-82-2236): Open.

 http://www.hgp.co.jp/cortina/ski/ (in Japanese only)

Jigatake Ski Resort (+81-261-22-0551): Open.

 http://www.jiigatake.com/ (in Japanese only)

Kashimayari Ski Resort (+81- 261-23-1231): Open.


YANABA Snowpark (+81-261-23-1123): Open.

 http://www.yanaba.co.jp/ (in Japanese only)


Traffic Information

  Road conditions: All major roads including Rt. 148 are open for traffic.

 ・Railway conditions: Operating normally.


Please check the updated information on GO! Nagano.







    Nagano Prefecture’s Official Tourism Guide “GO! Nagano”

      ・・・We provide tourism information for you in English, Korean,

Simplified Chinese, Thai and Traditional Chinese!

          Visit the site for various information including model courses

for travelers.






    Nagano Prefecture’s Official Tourism Email Newsletter (Published quarterly)

      Edited by: International Tourism Promotion Office, Nagano Prefecture

      TEL+81-26-235-7252  FAX+81-26-235-7257


      URL: http://www.go-nagano.net/