The best ski conditions aren’t limited to the Swiss Alps or the American Rockies. In fact, Japan has what some consider the best powder skiing there is. And it may come as a surprise to learn that Japan is the snowiest place on Earth.
A fortunate combination of incredible snow conditions, high-end ski resorts, and well-connected transportation options make Japan a highly desirable destination for snow sports enthusiasts of all skill levels, from beginners to pros.
And you can put your skills to the test at Hakkoda, the country’s powder skiing hub. Hakkoda is located in Aomori Prefecture, which is the most northern area of Japan’s main island, Honshu.
Not your average ski resort, Hakkoda harmonizes with the surrounding landscape. Here, you don’t exactly know where the private ski resort begins or ends, thanks to the vast backcountry and untouched nature that stretches across a series of curvy mountains.
The Japan Airlines dynamic package offers an exclusive all-inclusive service that includes everything from your flight to your comfortable accommodations and meals. The Japan Airlines dynamic package offers an exclusive service that includes your flights to your comfortable accommodations. Travelers can also take advantage of optional services that include transfer service to and from the airport to your hotel, and lift tickets.
This dynamic package is only offered by Japan Airlines. JAL is the only airline that offers convenient instant booking as well as ski packages for inbound travelers in Japan.
Hakkoda instant-book ski package inclusion
This special all-inclusive package includes:
• Flight: a domestic flight with JAL from Osaka-Aomori or Tokyo.
• Accommodations: The region’s top hotels are the accommodation of choice and include high-end hotels Hakkoda Hotel and Hotel Jogakura.
• Meals: Breakfast and dinner meals are included in the JAL package.
• Duration: Select your own custom length of stay; the duration of each JAL tour package is entirely up to the customer.
• Lift tickets are optional with this travel package.
• Taxi transfer service: Reliable transportation options offer easy access from the airport to the ski resort of your choice with optional services that include taxi transfers. When a taxi transfer is booked, travelers with other travelers arriving on the same flight, will be received in either a van or car that is waiting when you arrive at the airport.
English speaking assistance is not currently available with this package.
Untouched nature abounds in the majestic Hakkoda Mountains
Hakkoda has a reputation as one of Japan’s most intriguing ski destinations for reasons ranging from its epic snow conditions to its remote, seemingly untouched location.
Advanced skiers enjoy Hakkoda for its ungroomed runs and steep vertical drops into fluffy powder. And while the ski area draws in a good amount of experienced skiers, Hakkoda is a challenging feat for those just getting their ski legs, so to speak.
Hakkoda is outfitted with a ropeway, or cable car, and double chair lifts that take skiers to the top of the mountain. In total, Hakkoda is made up of eight vast mountains. The ropeway connects the slopes to one another. And there are sweeping, extensive areas suitable for backcountry skiers, too.
In recent years Hakkoda has experienced a surge in popularity. While the queues may be longer during peak season times and on clear, sunny days, don’t let wait times and crowds damper your time spent on the infamous slopes at Hakkoda. After all, anytime spent in the Hakkoda Mountains is time well spent.
A surplus of snowfall keeps you on the slopes and skiing throughout the winter season
Here, the average snowfall extends to depths that have been recorded up to 17 meters each season, according to Powder Hounds.
While the surplus of snowfall and upward-trending Hakkoda snow report is good news for powder hounds, conditions can be a bit testy at times. With great amounts of snowfall comes inclement weather. At times the storms around the Hakkoda Mountains result in high winds, low visibility, road closures, and otherwise brutal weather conditions that warrant caution on and off the slopes.
The weather is known to turn quickly in the Hakkoda Mountains, and self-navigating can be challenging. It’s not uncommon for skiers to require a guide. However, finding a guide to help you navigate the juhyo, or ice monsters, can be somewhat tricky.
The months of January and February are most impacted by severe weather. But don’t let that deter you from experiencing Hakkoda; the ski season generally runs from mid-December to early May. This provides plenty of time to get in some epic runs on the slopes of Hakkoda.
A traditional Japanese snow resort with no shortage of contemporary comforts
The area is tailored to the ski crowd in Hakkoda. Most of your time spent in the mountains will be spent on the slopes. While the ski area offers the basics, there’s not much else in terms of entertainment or activities. After all, when travelers come to Hakkoda, they come to ski.
After a day on the slopes, you can unwind and reset at one of the area’s premier resorts, such as the Hakkoda Hotel or Hotel Jogakura.
Tucked away in the hills of Aomori, this log cabin-style hotel extends straightforward quarters designed for travelers looking to spend the majority of their time in the region on the mountain, without sacrificing comfort, of course. Many of the rooms boast mountain views, and some have balconies or loft-style bedrooms.
Positioned at the base of Hakkoda, Hotel Jogakura offers upscale resort-style accommodations complete with access to a natural hot spring bath, ski rentals, laundry facilities, and dining options to keep you fueled for your day on Hakkoda.
Getting to Hakkoda
Accessing Hakkoda is simple. The easiest way to get to the ski destination is by air.
JAL offers multiple flights per day between Tokyo and Aomori Airport with a flight duration of about 80-minutes.
JAL also offers multiple flights per day between Osaka to Aomori Airport, with a flight duration of about 95-minutes.
Plan the ultimate ski trip to Hakkoda today
A destination for adrenaline junkies and powder hounds alike, Hakkoda ranks high at the top of Japan’s best ski areas. From the prime snow conditions to the high-end accommodations, Hakkoda has just what you’re searching for — if what you’re searching for is great powder, that is.
Ready to add Hakkoda to your must-visit bucket list? Let us help you plan your ski season adventure to Hakkoda Mountain, Japan. Your next epic ski adventure begins with JAL—book your next trip with Japan Airlines today.