Have you ever wondered what you should do during the long winter break? Maybe try a new hobby or travel to a new place? How about combining those two things together? Spending time at GALA Yuzawa Snow Resort (GALA Yuzawa) is a perfect place to do both activities during the winter break.
What Is GALA Yuzawa Snow Resort?
Credit: picture by the author
As you can tell by the name, GALA Yuzawa is located in a town named Yuzawa in Niigata Prefecture. It’s not only one of the top ski resorts in the business but is also easily accessible from Tokyo.
Along with dozens of ski resorts in the area, Yuzawa has a lot of onsen (hot springs) too, from the ski resorts to hotels, public bath houses, and even at shinkansen (Japan bullet trains) stations.
And speaking of ski resorts, GALA Yuzawa Snow Resort is a great option to experience the snowy weather with many breathtaking views, snowboarding and skiing, and many beginner-friendly winter activities.
Address: 1039-2 Yuzawa, Minamiuonuma District, Niigata 949-6101
Business Period: December 20, 2022 to May 7, 2023 (scheduled)
At GALA Yuzawa, you don’t have to know Japanese to be able to buy tickets or rent a snowboard because the staff there are super helpful and can assist you.
On the top right of the main website, you can see the languages; when you click on that, you will be taken to the website of the language you choose. There are English, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, and Thai.
Activities at GALA Yuzawa Snow Resort
When you click on the website, on their top page, you can see the daily report of the temperature, the depth of the snow, and whether they open or not. So, before you go to GALA Yuzawa, remember to check the website for climate updates.
At GALA Yuzawa, they have a lot of activities to try on for all ages. They are beginner friendly as they have many slope courses for people with different levels (beginner, beginner-intermediate, intermediate, and advanced).
Credit: GALA Yuzawa Snow Resort
In the map above, we can see that all the slopes have detailed explanations, so remember to screenshot or save the picture before you go.
Furthermore, if you are a beginner, we recommend taking lessons from instructors. They will help you learn how to ski/snowboard at your pace. You can make reservations with the instructor at these websites, offered by GALA Yuzawa (English and Chinese).
Besides skiing or snowboarding, GALA Yuzawa also provides different activities for people who want to look at the beautiful snowy weather and the breathtaking view in Yuzawa.
They have Snowmobile Sleigh Tour, Moon Bike, Snowshoe Tour, Snow Enjoyment Park, and Observation Deck. You can take a short tour around the area with the help of the staff or go to the top of the hill to witness the fantastic view scene from high up.
Prices and Fee
Because there are different types of tickets based on your stay duration and where you buy the ticket, the price to ski or snowboard varies from 3,400 – 8,000 yen (during the spring season – from April 10, 2023) and 4,400 – 9,000 yen (during normal business until April 9, 2023) for an adult and respectively, 1,700 – 4,000 yen and 2,200 – 4,500 yen for a child (ages from 6 to 12).
We recommend you book the lift tickets in advance to save money. You can find the link to the Japanese ticket reservation site (only Japanese access at the moment) on the GALA Yuzawa lift ticket page.
For the other activities, it varies from being free of charge to 3,500 yen.
If you don’t have your snowproof outfit, snow boots, or a snowboard/ski set, we recommend you rent gear at the facility.
Adult: 6,000 – 9,000 yen (snowboard/ski set) and 5,000 – 7,500 yen (wear)
Child: 3,500 – 5,500 yen (snowboard/ski set) and 3,000 – 4,500 yen (wear)
What to Prepare?
You can go for a 1-day trip to try skiing or snowboarding and to look at the beautiful view of the fluffy white snow, but personally, the 2-day trip will be more worthwhile. If you are a beginner, the first day will certainly familiarize you with handling a snowboard or how to ski. And on the second day, it will be just you and the majestic view offered by GALA Yuzawa Snow Resort.
We have two suggestions for you to best reach GALA Yuzawa:
For a within-the-day trip, you can take the shinkansen, as GALA Yuzawa has a station in the facility straight from Tokyo station. We recommend you take the Joetsu Shinkansen, as it only takes 74 minutes to get there, and don’t forget to get off at GALA Yuzawa Station.
And for a two-day trip or longer, if you have a Japanese or an international (approved by the Japanese government) driver’s license, renting a car is great. It will be flexible for you to travel to GALA Yuzawa since you have to drive back and forth between the accommodation and the facility at various times.
Food and Drink
You can bring your own meals if you have a specific diet, but at GALA Yuzawa, there is a lot of classic Japanese grub you should try at the restaurant. So remember to eat at the facility before and after you ski/snowboard.
Other than the essentials such as booking a hotel to stay the night, a passport for the rental, or money (cash/credit) to pay, you should also bring thin tight shirts and pants to wear inside the snowproof outfits to keep yourself warm and for flexibility.
Are You Ready for GALA Yuzawa Snow Resort?
So what are you waiting for? Book a ticket, rent a car, or buy a shinkansen ticket, and let’s go to GALA Yuzawa Snow Resort!
Please note: All the prices are valid at the time of writing. For more information, please check the official website of GALA Yuzawa Snow Resort
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Featured photo credit: Canva.com