[2021 Version] Bringing new technology for smooth and convenient fun and thrills at Tohoku ski resorts

The mountains of the Tohoku region are always covered with the finest snow during the winter. The same is guaranteed for the 2021-2022 season and with it, many skiers and snowboarders are sure to visit. Several large resort hotels will be opening this year at ski resorts across the Tohoku region, along with several new services with the latest technology bound to give extra comfort to visitors. In this article, find all the latest information for your Tohoku ski trip this season.

Three new large resort hotels for Appi Kogen Ski Resort perfect for long stays.

Appi Kogen Ski Resort
Known for its "aspirin snow" among the finest dry snow in the world, Appi Kogen Ski Resort boasts one of the biggest slopes in Iwate Prefecture. With 21 courses there is plenty of variety and several long runs, including a 5,000m run from the top of the mountain, an extensive tree run zone, an ungroomed powder snow area, and more, making this resort a great option for all ages and levels. There also the opportunity for hot springs baths, delicious food, sightseeing, nature walks, and much more that help make winter a great time to visit Tohoku! This season marks the 40th anniversary of the ski resort, with many events being held to celebrate this occasion.

More information about Appi Kogen Ski Resort here

ANA Holiday Inn Resort Appi Kogen
From December 2021 to the beginning of 2022, three new large-scale resort hotels open at Appi Kogen Ski Resort. Two hotels located close to the slopes will undergo major renovations and open as ANA Crowne Plaza Resort Appi Kogen and ANA Holiday Inn Resort Appi Kogen. ANA InterContinental Appi Kogen Resort, a four-story luxury resort hotel, opens for this season. You can experience the best of resort life in both accommodation and leisure in the improved Appi Kogen.

Experience the best skiing at major resorts

ANA Crowne Plaza Resort Appi Kogen Lobby
Each of these three resort hotels is based on different concepts to cater for what people want in their stay. These include accommodating rooms, spaces that bring in the feeling of nature, luxurious decorative lobbies, and more. In total, the three hotels offer more than 1,000 rooms.

ANA InterContinental Appi Kogen Resort Restaurant
The area covered by these three hotels encompasses 18 restaurants, bars, stores, a fitness area, hot spring baths, banquet halls, and other facilities. Some of the hotels are directly connected to the slope for convenient skiing. With all that is offered, it is best to stay at least 2 days to get the most out of everything offered at these hotels.

Much to see and do at Appi Kogen in winter!

Skiing isn't only what brings people to Appi Kogen. You may want to take a short trip to the surrounding areas for some sightseeing and shopping. To experience the natural sights of Appi, try some winter activities like the snowshoeing tour at the Appi Nature School. A highlight of the natural wonders of Appi is the snow and ice-covered "Snow Monsters" of Maries' fir trees on Hachimantai, which are truly a sight to behold.

Frozen Nanataki Falls
One of the most famous natural attractions in Iwate Prefecture is Nanataki Falls. Its 43-meter drop flows down seven tiers and is a stunning sight. If the conditions are right, you can catch the "icefall," a rare moment of awe-inspiring beauty. Whether you choose to go skiing, enjoy hot spring baths, dine on local cuisine, or see the local sights, your winter travel at Appi Kogen is sure to be the perfect escape.

Zao Onsen Ski Resort now supports online lift ticket sales

Zao Onsen Ski Resort Juhyogen Course
Zao Onsen Ski Resort, one of the largest stand-alone resorts in Japan, is adjacent to Zao Onsen and has 14 slopes and 12 courses that are all on a larger scale than usual in terms of course width, run distance, and visibility. Long, exhilarating runs with spectacular views of the Zao Mountain Range and the world-famous frozen "Snow Monster," trees are what brings people here for skiing.

Zao Onsen Ski Resort and Ropeway
Online lift ticket sales is now possible for the 2021-2022 season! Purchase lift tickets in advance according to your plans. In some areas, automatic ticket machines are also available to collect tickets and passes. Some slopes can also offer immediate skiing right after arriving, for a more smooth skiing experience.

More information about Zao Onsen Ski Resort here

Do not miss Zao Onsen in the Zao region

Zao Onsen in winter
The town of Zao Onsen, located at the foot of the ski resort, is one of the most famous hot spring towns in Japan. The hot springs were first discovered 1,900 years ago and across the centuries the location has developed into the town standing today. Three public bathhouses are open to day trippers, making it the perfect place to end your day of skiing. Bathe in a secluded bath steeped in history and surrounded by nature at "Zao Onsen Dairotenburo" (Zao Onsen Grand Open-air Bath), a large scale day-trip hot spring that can accommodate up to 200 people at one time. Zao Onsen is also home to several free footbath, where you can relax while enjoying the view of the street lights and steam rising around the streets.

Light up of Zao Onsen
The main street is lined with a number of long-established hot spring inns, shrines and temples, scenic spots, restaurants, and traditional craft stores. The street is also close to the meeting point for the Juhyo (frozen trees) tour. Any stay in this enchanting hot spring town is sure to fully deliver the charms of the Zao region to you.

Zao's famous "Snow Monsters" are a sight to behold!

The world-famous ice-covered trees of Zao, known as "Snow Monsters," are a must-see for any visit to Zao Onsen Ski Resort. The juhyogen (frozen tree field) course, reachable from the top of Mt. Jizo, is the most spectacular spot on the slopes. The countless ice formations that completely cover the area create an otherworldly atmosphere. The restaurant Sancho on the top of the mountain offers a spectacular view above the clouds and is a great place to enjoy a meal while admiring the juhyo trees.

Zao frozen trees light up at night at the
The "Juhyo Light Up" event runs for about 45 days, starting on Christmas. You can see the frozen "juhyo" trees bathed in fantastic lights during this magical event. Many activities and events are planned around enjoying these trees, such as tours from the Zao ropeway, and the "Juhyo Illusion Corridor Tour" where you can view the trees from a heated night cruiser. This is a magical moment that is sure to make your ski trip to the region extra special.

Experience the latest in ski resort convenience technology at Miyagi Zao Eboshi Resort

Miyagi Zao Eboshi Resort
Miyagi Zao Eboshi Resort is a family-friendly resort offering exhilarating runs with great views of the Pacific Ocean and the Sendai Plain across a variety of courses for beginner and intermediate-level skiers. The Yuki-no-yuenchi kids' area offers a wide range of activities for children, including an 80-meter-long snow escalator, a sledding course, and an air dome. This resort surrounded by the beautiful scenery of Tohoku can be reached in about 60 minutes by car from Sendai Station.

Miyagi Zao Eboshi Resort Lift
For the 2021-2022 season, Miyagi Zao Eboshi Resort has installed the latest technology for a more convenient ski experience. The ski lifts are now fitted with automatic ticket gates where you can use an IC lift ticket to enter the gates for a more smooth and convenient experience. Also, from this season, advanced tickets are now available to purchase online via your smartphone on the resort's website; no need to wait in line for tickets through this service. Free Wi-Fi is to be installed around the base of the resort for better online connections when inside.

Miyagi Zao Eboshi Resort Kids' Park
Special deals bring savings to families who want to ski together, such as free lift tickets for elementary school-aged children (6-12 years old) for the 2021-2022 season. Enjoy a fun and more convenient Tohoku winter through the latest technology at Miyagi Zao Eboshi Resort!

More information about Miyagi Zao Eboshi Resort here

Discover top Tohoku hot springs in Miyagi Prefecture

Kamasaki Onsen
If you are planning to visit Miyagi Prefecture in winter, a visit to the hot springs cannot be missed! The area around the Miyagi Zao Eboshi Resort is dotted with a number of unique hot spring towns. Among these is Naruko Onsenkyo, an area home to 5 hot spring areas across the village; Kamasaki Onsen, a more peaceful and serene hot spring resort among the trees; Akiu Onsen, located around a deep gorge, and other places.

Togatta Kokeshi Bridge
One of the best places to visit is Togatta Onsen, which is located near the ski resorts in this area. More than a dozen, richly unique inns are gathered in this 400-year old hot spring town. These inns include Chikusenso, which has an open-air bath based on a modern Japanese concept, Shunsai-yuyado Daichu, a hideaway-style inn boasting tatami matted corridors throughout, and Onsen Sanso Daikon-no-Hana, reminiscent of a villa with a separate private open-air bath. Togatta Onsen has many attractive hot spring inns to stay that you are bound to find one you want to experience yourself.

Togatta Onsen's Kami-no-yu bath
Traditonal hot spring resorts have public bathhouses called "Kami-no-yu" with alternating hot and warm baths for a different kind of relaxing experience. It is also easy to find great places to sample and dine on the seasonal flavors of Miyagi Prefecture, and shop at retro stores for people to find things from the past. Enjoy the best of both thrilling snow fun and soothing hot spring waters of traditional resorts in Miyagi Prefecture.

Find other fun things only in Miyagi Prefecture

Miyagi Zao Kokeshi Museum
If you want to enjoy even more of what Miyagi Prefecture has to offer, visit some of the spots around the ski resorts. The Zao Cheese Factory, where you can sample freshly made natural cheese, and the Miyagi Zao Kokeshi Museum, where you can paint your own kokeshi dolls are two great and fun examples.

Miyagi Zao Fox Village
The Miyagi Zao Fox Village is one of the most popular theme parks in Zao in Miyagi where you can see and interact with more than 100 foxes of different species. If you are traveling by car from the ski resort area, we recommend visiting the city of Sendai, where you can learn about the history of the region at historical sites, or dine on local cuisine unique to the region. Whether you are looking to spend time in the city or the countryside, there is plenty to see and do for a great time.

Enjoy the winter in Tohoku and be among the first on the new slopes

Clear skies on the slopes
Tohoku's ski resorts have undergone further evolution for the 2021-2022 season, becoming ever more convenient and fun for even greater winter memories. The three ski resorts introduced in this article all have a wide range of hotels and inns near their slopes, making them great choices as a base for a long stay in the region. Also make sure to see the local sights, bathe in the hot springs, and sample the local food, to experience the charms of Tohoku to the fullest.

[Note] Pricing information and schedule are correct at the time of writing and are subject to change without notice. Please check the official website before your trip.

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