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Niseko / Hokkaido

Hakuba / Honshu

NSW Snowy Mountains


Niseko refers to a mountainous region of south-western Hokkaido, which is Japan’s northern most island. Its closest airport is Chitose, which is 2.5 hours away and the nearest major city is Sapporo, which is a two-hour drive. The area has recently become hugely popular, mainly because of its huge annual snowfall. Niseko receives on average 14 meters of snow, most of which comes down as light, dry powder, which is considered ideal for skiing and snowboarding. It has won the “Best Resort in Asia” award at the World Ski Awards four years in a row, but many people would argue that it is also home to the best conditions for skiing and snowboarding in the world.  In the summer when the mountaintops surrounding Niseko turn green it’s time to ditch the skis and grab a bike or a sup! Niseko is just as wondrous in summer as it is in winter! There’s no better way to explore everything Niseko’s green season has to offer than by biking, supping and hiking.

Niseko in Winter

Niseko’s main ski resort is called Niseko United, which is made up of four interlinked, world class ski areas; Grand Hirafu, Annupuri, Hanazono and Niseko Village. The ‘hub’ or main town centre is a quaint but burgeoning village called Hirafu. Hirafu has grown hugely over the last 10 years and is now populated by a mix of luxury hotels and apartments, designer homes and more traditional pensions. Visitors will also find an assortment of bars and restaurants, ranging from Michelin starred fine dining establishments to hole in the wall, speak-easy style whiskey bars. Many bars and restaurants take pride in using local produce, which is available in abundance thanks to Hokkaido’s naturally rich and fertile farmland. There are also plenty of activities to enjoy off the mountain and outside the bars and restaurants, including an assortment of onsens (natural hot springs), which offer a chance to relax and indulge in one of Japan’s oldest customs. The countryside surrounding Hirafu is a frozen wonderland that can be explored by show shoe, snowmobile, snow cat or even helicopter. Hirafu and the broader Niseko region offer something special to every single person who visits, all of whom will fall for its special charms. You can visit our partner Snow Pak for their Niseko Travel Guide or Willow In Wanderland's Niseko Travel Guide for additional information.


Niseko is just as exciting and beautiful in summer as it is in winter! When the snow melts and ‘green season’ rolls around, it’s time to swap your skis or snowboard for bikes and stand up paddle boards. The possibilities for adventures are endless, especially if you want to rent a bike or board. Or book one of our exciting customisable tours!

Road Biking
Conditions in and around Niseko are perfect for riding a road bike. Think moderate temperatures, rolling hills, wide, well maintained, quiet roads and an abundance of environmental eye candy to keep you amused as you peddle. Riders can challenge themselves to crush kilometres and tackle epic hill climbs or cruise comfortably with family and friends.

Cross Country Mountain Biking
Mountain biking in Niseko is becoming increasingly popular, with more trails being built to suit all kinds of riders. Experienced MTB enthusiasts can tackle custom-made single tracks and downhill sections while beginners can enjoy riding scenic river-side trails and mellow paths through lush green forests.

Stand Up Paddle Boarding
The Niseko area is intersected by the Shiribetsu River, a meandering, silver ribbon of water banked by lush forests that is home to a myriad of animal life. Not far from Niseko is Lake Toya, a volcanic caldera (cauldron), famous for the mountainous islands that rise from its depths. Both the Shiribetsu River and Lake Toya are just begging to be explored by stand up paddle board. SUPs are easy to use and offer a unique perspective on the landscape, all while giving users a great work out.

Guided Tours
With us, you can customise your own adventure! SUP, bike or hike your way around the spectacular Niseko region. We offer tours that include relaxing onsens, tasty BBQs, Japanese cultural experiences or stress relieving massages. Or you may want to brush up on your photography skills with a tour taken by an experienced photographer.  You can choose from day or half day tours. Or we can organise an overnight excursion! It’s best to drop into our store to discuss what you’re after so can tailor a tour to suit your needs. For more summer guided tour information click here


Niseko has a huge range of accommodation options, it's sometimes hard to choose. Niseko offers four main types of accommodations including; Pensions, Lodges, Apartments, and Hotels. Before choosing your accommodation, the first decision you'll need to make is which resort you think you'll spend the most time in. The largest accommodation is located in Hirafu, offering options to suit all budgets. To book your Niseko accommodation, you can do this through one of the following fantastic accommodation options, or simply book through one of our recommend travel partners.

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Travel Partners

To ensure you get the best deals, best accommodations, and overall the best experience whilst in Niseko, we recommend booking your holiday through one of our travel partners;


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Niseko Snow Sports Schools

There are many great ski and board schools in Niseko, offering specialised programs for kids, and adults, as well as private lessons. Here are some companies we recommending going with;

Pro-Powder-Logo-BW          Niseko-academy          niseko black          


You won't be longing for anything in the food and drinks department in Niseko! There is a large variety of bars and restaurants in the Niseko/Hirafu area. Of course, you can find plenty of authentic Japanese restaurants and izakaya style dining. There are also many Western dining options for those who prefer a taste of home while abroad. In terms of bars, there are many, many options ranging from cheap to luxurious! You'll always be able to find a cold Sapporo in any given establishment.

Travel Tips

Make sure you carry enough JPY. Japan is a very cash-oriented society and most ATMs don’t accept foreign cards.

Japan uses a two-pin, 100 volt electrical plug, Australian visitors will need to purchase an adapter in order to use electrical devices.

Japanese culture holds politeness as incredibly important, so please be as respectful as possible while travelling through Japan. If you're unsure of how to behave, watch how the locals around you are acting.

Visiting an authentic onsen – especially in winter – is one of the quintessential Japanese experiences, and not to be missed.

Travel insurance is particularly important when on a ski holiday. Be sure to take out ski and snowboard cover so your covering on the mountain.

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