- Places to Explore
- Travel Tips
- Fodor's Choice
- Japanese Phrases
For the best skiing in Hokkaido, head for Niseko's Grand Hirafu, Annupuri, Niseko Village, and Hanazono runs. Popular with Japanese skiiers in the 1970s, Niseko had another major boom at three decades later when Australian tourists made this a favorite winter destination. Asia's economic downturn and the high exchange rate cut the number of foreigh travelers, but now the Chinese have rediscovered the place.
Between the skiier paradise of Mt. Annupuri and gorgeous Mt. Yotei is a gentle landscape of hot springs, dairy and vegetable farms, and hiking trails. For most Western visitors the many adventure sports are the reason to visit. Australian and Canadian expats offer year-round thrills, including white-water rafting (best from April to May), backcountry skiing (December to March), mountain biking, and bungee jumping.
Thanks to the influence of young Western tourists (less likely to spend their day indoors eating), Niseko was also a major self-catering vacation destination, meaning visitors provide their own food in exchange for access to a full kitchen. With some companies staffed by English-speaking expats, this offers an unusual-in-Japan stay opportunity. The Niseko area is hands-down the best place to discover the Hokkaido countryside, and it's still relatively easy to find an English-speaking guide.
- Location: Niseko
- 80 Degrees: Fodor's Helps You Find Your Best Beach Vacation Spots
- Fodor's Go List 2014: Where we are going in 2014
- World Cup Fever: Start planning your trip to Brazil!
- Fodor's 100 Hotel Awards: Check out the winners of 2013
- Weekend Getaways: Fodor's Recommends the Best Weekend Escapes in the US
- Great American Vacation: Find Your Next U.S. Trip with Fodor's
Now that the flurry of November trip reports has come and gone (they were great!), I figure it’s time for one more, before the reports from spring cherry blossom-viewing visits start to come in. This Read more
After more than a month back from Japan, I’m happy to finally have a bit of a breather that allows me to start a trip report. Read more
I'm starting to plan a trip to Japan, and have questions about which international airport(s) to fly in and out of and how to get to various places we have in mind to sightsee.
I have a conference Read more
· News & Features
This week, we covered top destinations for great family getaways—from Disney World to dinosaur spotting. ... Read more
Go on location in Görlitz, Germany, to the transporting set of director Wes Anderson's film... Read more
Kick off spring with some of this year's best events and hotel packages in Washington, D.C.... Read more