ZAO ONSEN

G'Day Japan! / Destinations / ZAO ONSEN

This traditional ski resort reigns supreme in Japan

The historic hot spring town of Zao Onsen lies within the Zao Mountain Range, an impressive cluster of stratovolcanoes 40 minutes from Yamagata City. Legend has it that a wounded warrior stumbled upon the first spring-head in the area after a battle over 1,900 years ago. The waters have since earned the title ‘Springs of Beauty’, for their rich concentration of cleansing and refreshing minerals for the skin.

Zao Onsen is also famous as the home of Zao Onsen Ski Resort, one of Japan’s most unique. This is one of the only places that ‘snow monsters’ come out to play, a natural phenomenon formed by ice crystals expanding and contorting on high-altitude stands of fir trees. Known as ‘juhyo’, they populate the slopes of Zao Onsen Ski Resort’s 1,331-metre Juhyo Kgen gondola station. There are 12 courses and 14 slopes in total to be enjoyed at Zao, ranging widely from gentle beginners’ slopes to pro racing courses, and the resort is family-friendly with a kids park and childcare facilities. The high-altitude Paradise Slope offers a great combination of courses for all levels, with the challenging Yokokura-no-kabe wall for experts, and mellower, open sections for beginner and intermediate riders. The slope is surrounded by Zao’s snow monsters, and is open until early May – a true paradise for skiing and snowboarding. And after a day on the slopes, the famous hot springs of Zao Onsen village are pure bliss.

There are five hot spring facilities for day visitors to the area, as well as three public hot spring baths with entry fees of just ¥200.

Almost 50 different spring-heads are clustered around Zao Onsen, and many of the resort’s accommodation facilities offer the luxury of hot spring bathing just minutes from the slopes of Zao Hot Springs Ski Resort. This adds to the village’s allure in winter, making it a perfect destination to experience authentic local Japanese culture, while enjoying the magic of its powder snow to the fullest.

Further Information
http://zao-spa.or.jp/english

1806GJ18_IMAGES_NISEKO4

Accommodations

Ryokan Kinosato

Kinosato is a traditional Japanese accommodation in the centre of Zao Onsen. It is a small, homely ryokan-inn with 22 Japanese style rooms. The real treat at Kinosato is their baths pulled from an all natural sulphuric spring. The inn is located within walking distance to some of Zao Onsen’s ski resorts, so this would make for the perfect reward after a day in the snow.

The seasonally updated menu at the restaurant will fill you up with delicious meals amongst friendly conversations with the staff.

It’s hard not to feel at home in their comfortable and warm atmosphere.

Zao Onsen Ryokan Kinosato
1271-1 Zao Onsen, Yamagata city, Yamagata
Phone: +81-23-694-2288
Email: info@zao-kinosato.co.jp
http://www.zao-kinosato.co.jp

Sangoro Onsen Lodge

Sangoro Onsen Lodge was made for those who believe in ‘more the merrier’! Sangoro Onsen Lodge in Zao Onsen, Yamagata, provides the dream accommodation for large groups travelling with 16 or more people.

This is a fully self-contained apartment block with 4 bedrooms, 16 futons (sleeps up to 25 people) and 3 bathrooms plus spacious living and dining areas. The apartment comes with all the basics for the kitchen as well as wi-fi, karaoke and net TV (Netflix) facilities.

The company also has a hotel in Zao Onsen Ski Resort, so be sure to check out their website for further information.

Sangoro Onsen Lodge
Chuo area, Zao Onsen Ski Resort, Yamagata City, Yamagata
Phone: +81-23-694-9330
Email: zao@sangoro.co.jp
http://sangoro.co.jp/index.html/english/pg259.html

COMMENTS

RELATED POSTS

TOKYO

The largest city in the world by population, Greater Tokyo sprawls as far as the eye can see from the skyscrapers of Shinjuku, towards the silhouette of Mount Fuji on the horizon. One of the most iconic of these skyscrapers is the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building; designed to resemble a gi… Read More

ENOSHIMA/KAMAKURA

Follow the sea breeze to Enoshima and Kamakura The Kanto region in which Tokyo is located has all sorts of landscapes and cityscapes to be enjoyed, as well as variances in local culture from place to place. And if you travel southwest of Tokyo, taking a 65 minute train ride on the Odakyu Limited… Read More

HAKUBA VALLEY

√ More than ten metres a season of the best powder you've never seen √ Amazing backcountry, hot springs and local dining and drinking √ International resort night life with great English tours and lessons Nine powder-rich resorts. One pass, a tap-and-go ticket gate system. The Hakuba Valley just k… Read More

HAKONE

A breath of fresh air, 75 minutes from Shinjuku Hakone has provided a found retreat for the Japanese people for over four centuries. Known for its hot springs, hospitality, and the gorgeous natural sceneries, you can find expect to peace and relaxation in Hakone. What is extra exciting about … Read More

BOOK YOUR TRIP