To me, Nagano is synonymous with the 1998 Winter Olympics. It was where the world’s greatest skiers and snowboarders gathered to compete, for the first time in the Olympic history. There is a magical aura of the Olympic Games that is omnipresent all through Hakuba, Nagano. This picturesque ski village boasts beautifully manicured streets, as well as fabulous restaurants, shops and points of interest. The Hakuba Happo-one ski resort is famed for steep slopes and moguls, panoramic snowcapped skylines, spa and onsen, and its friendly community – all of which we got to experience during our recent visit.
Hakuba is accessible by train from Shinjuku station. On our last visit there, we chose instead to rent an SUV and reached Hakuba in less than three hours. The drive was quite scenic, and before we knew it we were out of the metropolis and into a winter wonderland.
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