Jack Taylor
SnowPak Local Insider
Jack Taylor
  • Endless dry and light japow to enjoy
  • Large ski area connecting four different resorts and diverse terrain to suit everyone
  • Backcountry gate means its easy to access off-piste terrain
  • Incredible night skiing available
  • Great for first timers to Japan: easily accessible, fantastic shopping, vibrant nightlife, and English is widely spoken
  • It's pretty popular so freshies gets tracked out quickly
  • Expensive place to ski compared to other Japanese ski resorts
  • Crowds can be an issue, especially during the holidays
  • Not the most authentic Japanese ski experience with flocks of westerners visiting
  • If steep chutes and of groomed runs are what you crave, Niseko won't deliver.

Niseko Ski Packages

Lodging + Lift Tickets Discount Price
The Vale Niseko
2 x Adult 2-day Lift Ticket
15% off $1,591
Skye Niseko
2 x Adult 2-day Lift Ticket
16% off $1,913
Ki Niseko
2 x Adult 2-day Lift Ticket
10% off $1,308

View all ski packages for Niseko



Japow! Welcome to one of the snowiest ski resorts on the planet and the most popular powder haven in the Land of the Rising Sun. If you absolutely, positively, have to get up to your eyeballs in the white stuff, there are few others places that give you better odds than Niseko. Japan’s premier winter wonderland has quite rightly earned a reputation as an essential destination for any self-respecting powder hound, with an average annual snowfall of over 80 days and record snow depths of more than 13 ft!

16/17 Historical Snowfall

Best month to go

Late December to mid-February

The first lifts turn on as early as the end of November and the last one doesn’t shut off until the beginning of May, but Niseko’s peak season sits firmly between late December to mid-February. If you’re here then, expect three or four powder days a week! There is a slight downside to all that snow, namely being that visibility can be particularly poor, but we’re happy with the compromise. If you’d prefer a few bluebird days then visiting Niseko at the start of March is a good call and a good time to pickup a great deal. If there is any time to avoid going to Niseko, it’s around Christmas and Chinese New Year, prices are hiked up and the slopes get packed.


New Chitose Airport


Niseko (2-3 hours)

Hirafu (Walk)

  • Majority of hotels, dining and nightlife
  • Wide range of lodging options
  • Great for groups

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Niseko Village (Walk)

  • Easy to get around compact ski village
  • Has the best ski facilities for kids in Niseko
  • Great for families

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Annapuri (Walk)

  • Quiet and peaceful ski village
  • Limited dining and nightlife
  • Less accommodation options

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Hanazono (Walk)

  • Limited accommodation options
  • Quiet place to stay
  • Limited dining and nightlife

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For beginners

Niseko has many options available for beginners. For the most beginner-friendly slopes test out Paradise and Family at Annupuri where the terrain is wide, gentle and the longest for beginners in Niseko.

More beginners tips

For intermediates

Intermediates will be spoilt for choice at Niseko. Namara in Niseko Village is wide, straight and long run, great for perfecting turns and switching edges on your board. Another top pick of ours would have to be Youtei Sunset in Hanazono, a 3,900 ft slope that is nice and high and away from the crowds found on the main runs on Hirafu.

More intermediates tips

For experts

The off-piste experience is what Niseko is known for, with almost all runs accompanied by amazing sidecountry. The Strawberry Fields in Hanazono is our pick of the lot with perfectly spaced trees and the perfect gradient!The backcountry off Gate 9 is also unreal. Think face shots, deep untouched powder, tree runs, and stunning scenery. Just watch out for the waterfall!

More experts tips

Find freshies

You'll find plenty of great pow anywhere outside of the boundaries but some of the best can be found off Gate 8 and beyond!

Ditch the crowds

The Hirafu ski area is the most busiest, so head up high and get yourself on Youtei Sunset, a long slope that hardly ever sees the masses. Otherwise, opt for the quieter slopes of Annupuri. 

Non skiers

Niseko has tons of activities and attractions to keep non-skiers happy. They can go snow rafting and tubing, soak in the many onsens (hot springs) or visit the Snow Festival during February.


Niseko is a magical wonderland with things to do for the whole family including tubing, restaraunts and the Sapporo Snow Festival which is held every February. The resort also has plently of childcare and baby sitting services if you want some time for yourself.


NisekoAkakura Kanko
beginner38 %40 %
intermediate32 %30 %
advanced30 %30 %
total runs81 10
ski area--
summit elevation3,937ft 4,921ft
total lifts31 7
child lift ticketFree ¥3,000 JPY ($28 USD)
adult lift ticket¥7,400 JPY ($68 USD) ¥4,300 JPY ($39 USD)
back country
value for money
average total snowfall416″ -

Save up to 33% when you book a Niseko package!

View Niseko packages

Niseko Reviews

Fabulous 4.4 / 5
based on 71 reviews

How well the resort caters for beginner skiers / boarders


How well the resort caters for intermediate skiers / boarders?


How well the resort caters for advanced skiers / boarders


How accessible and convenient it is to get to this resort from a major destination


Quality of the off-piste terrain


Overall value for money of the resort

Value for money

Quality of lifts, lift speed and lift layout in the resort


Quantity and quality of the snow


How uncrowded is the resort


Après ski and dining options


Services and facilities e.g. child care, tubing, health care, equipment hire


How family friendly is this resort?

Family Friendliness
Superb!4.8 / 5Dec 10, 2017
HLHarry L.
advanced snowboarder
Amazing Resort! Snow is perfect. The town can get quite icy and slippery though! On mountain can also be a bit crowded at times, but its a big resort with plenty of snow and terrain ranging from all skill levels. The food and bar scene is great! Plenty of accomodation and buses running around town to make it easier to get around. Would definitely... More
Very Good!4.1 / 5Dec 10, 2017
JMJustin M.
advanced snowboarder
Niseko has a lot to offer. Lots of deep powder that can be challenging while riding through the trees. The top and side country requires some hiking. Definitely worth it.... More
Very Good!3.9 / 5Dec 10, 2017
DSDavid S.
advanced snowboarder
Great snow and lots of it. Many powder days, love the food, love the outdoor onsens. The mountain is actually four separate resorts, spread out thus will take a few days to ski/board the whole mountain. Demo a board w Gentemstick.... More
Very Good!4.2 / 5Dec 10, 2017
BGBryce G.
advanced skier
Skiing in Japan is an amazing cultural experience due to the delicious food, hot springs and Japanese friendliness. Definitely a 'go to' place for not only the skiing but the food and cultural experience... More
Very Good!4.2 / 5Dec 08, 2017
LTLeonard T.
intermediate snowboarder
Niseko is a grand place, 3 hours by bus to Chitose airport but still buzzing with life. Snowfall can be a little variable but when it dumps it is some of the best snow in the world. Huge mountain with slopes for every grade, great food and accommodation, and some amazing sights and backcountry!... More
Superb!4.7 / 5Dec 08, 2017
NMNolan M.
advanced skier
You couldn't ask for a better introduction to snow in Japan than Niseko. Whether you stay in Niseko itsself or in nearby Hirafu, the snow is awesome, the food is great, the people are friendly and there is always a party.... More
Fabulous!4.4 / 5Dec 08, 2017
RWRob W.
advanced snowboarder
Unbelievable, best boarding of my life! I'll definitely be going back as soon as I get the chance and can't wait to take my boys aged 11 and 13. Such amazing powder and the hospitality of our Japanese hosts was the best I've experienced world wide.... More
Superb!4.5 / 5Dec 08, 2017
CJCharles J.
advanced snowboarder
Come here to experience some back home fun with a twist of Asia to and to the mix! Many Bars from which to slip and slide from as the snow seems to fall all night long cover everyone's tracks who went out that night!... More
Superb!4.7 / 5Dec 07, 2017
PBPaul B.
advanced snowboarder
An absolutely unbelievable amount of snow up to your eyeballs and an incredible atmosphere of the loveliest place of the planet left me feeling like it was all a dream.... More
Superb!4.6 / 5Dec 06, 2017
YKYuka K.
intermediate snowboarder
No need to mention about the best powder snow. Not only that, but also touching good warm local people, getting quality vegitable at market, feeling beautiful nature in the woods, cozy nights in your lodge, can't be better!!... More

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