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In the typical year, Tokyo gets only one or two days of light snowfall, and the snow rarely remains on the ground for more than a few days, if it collects at all. Yet the city is located reasonably close to several of Japan's popular snow destinations, many of which are easy enough to access in a daytrip. The best time to visit these snowy destinations is in January and February when the snow is at its deepest.

The following are some of the best places to see snow near Tokyo (see also our nationwide list):

Okunikko

About 3 hours, 2500-5000 yen one way by train and bus
Nikko is a good place to experience a mixture of snow and culture. While in a typical year the shrines and temples around the town center do not get much snow, the Okunikko region located higher up in the mountains around Lake Chuzenji usually offers snowy landscapes and frozen waterfalls; although snow is not always guaranteed during warmer winters.

Kusatsu Onsen

About 3 hours, 6000 yen one way by train and bus
Kusatsu Onsen is blessed with large volumes of quality hot spring water and is consistently ranked the top onsen destination in Japan. In addition, the hot spring town is usually covered in snow in the winter and makes for a nice overnight visit from Tokyo, especially when combined with a stay at one of the local ryokan.

Manza Onsen

About 3 hours, 7000 yen one way by train and bus
Manza Onsen is a hot spring resort town located 1800 meters above sea level, high up on the slopes of Mount Shirane on the opposite side of Kusatsu Onsen. The mountain provides Manza with the country's most sulfuric waters, and large amounts of snowfall in the winter make the town one of the best places near Tokyo to enjoy an outdoor bath in the snow.

Minakami Onsen

About 3 hours, 3000-6000 yen one way by local train or shinkansen
Minakami is a popular hot spring location within day trip distance from Tokyo. One of the best hot springs in Minakami is Takaragawa Onsen, which offers some of the largest and most famous outdoor baths in the country. Takaragawa Onsen is one of the closest mixed bathing hot springs from Tokyo, and its beautiful mixed gender baths lie along a river and take on a different character through the changing seasons. A women-only outdoor bath is also available.

Karuizawa

65-80 minutes, 5500 yen one way by Hokuriku Shinkansen
Karuizawa is an upscale mountain getaway for wealthy Tokyoites. As such, the town offers excellent shopping, including one of the country's largest outlet malls. In addition, there is the Karuizawa Prince Ski Resort, one of the earliest resorts to open each year in Japan, albeit with man-made snow in the early stages of the season.

Mount Fuji

About 2 hours, 2000 yen one way by train or bus
Mount Fuji is covered by snow for more than half the year, but the snow is not always easily accessible. The Fuji Five Lake region at the mountain's northern base usually sees snow during winter, but it is not guaranteed. More snow falls at the Fuji Subaru Line 5th Station halfway up to mountain, but the very snow is responsible for the road there to be partially or fully closed during much of the season. Alternatively, there are two ski resorts on the mountain, Fujiten and Yeti, that use man-made snow if natural one is unavailable.

Snow in Spring

Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route

About 3.5 hours, 10,000 yen one way by train
With unbelievable amounts of snow, the Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route spans part of Toyama and Nagano prefectures. The route is closed in winter, but during spring you can traverse a corridor with up to 20 meter high walls of packed snow. The snow lasts into early summer, but the best time to traverse the corridor is in late April.

Hotels around Tokyo

    • Sancoinn Grande Tokyo Hamamatsucho
      Enjoy each room's luxurious furnishings and attached bath/vanity in one of Tokyo's premier hotels. Just 25 minutes from Haneda Airport and also minutes from Tokyo Tower and Odaiba.
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Budget:
    • Mokkoan
      Budget-friendly
      Featuring free WiFi and a hot tub, Mokkoan offers accommodation in Kita Ward, Tokyo. Private parking is available on site. Every room comes with a flat-screen TV with cable channels. Certain units have a seating area where you can relax. For your comfort, you will find slippers and free toiletries. You will find a shared kitchen at the property. The guest house also offers free use of bicycles. Yokohama is 37 km from Mokkoan, while Chiba is 41 km away. The nearest airport is Tokyo Haneda International Airport, 24 km from Mokkoan.
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    • HISAYO'S INN
      Budget-friendly
      Set in the Ota Ward district in Tokyo, 5 km from Tokyo International Airport Terminal No2 Observation Deck, HISAYO'S INN features air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi throughout the property. Each room has air conditioning and a safety deposit box. A shared kitchen comes with a refrigerator, stovetop, microwave, toaster and electric kettle. Bathrooms are shared and include free toiletries, towels, hairdryer, mouthwash and toothpaste. You will find a washing machine, tumble dryer and electrical adapter. Guests can try Japanese traditional haori jacket and have their photos taken free of charge. Rental bikes are available, and the staff can assist guests try on a yukata robe for female at a fee. Free luggage storage service is offered. Bike hire is available at this guest house and the area is popular for cycling. Oedo Onsen Monogatari is 8 km from HISAYO'S INN, while Fuji TV Odaiba is 9 km from the property. The nearest airport is Tokyo Haneda International Airport, 3 km from HISAYO'S INN.
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    • SOLA HOTEL
      Mid-range
      Located in Tokyo, near Kamejimashogakko Memorial Park, Kameido Tenjin Shrine and Umeyashiki Monument, SOLA HOTEL features free WiFi, and guests can enjoy a shared lounge and a terrace. Accommodation is fitted with air conditioning, a fully equipped kitchen, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom with bidet, a hairdryer and free toiletries. A fridge and kettle are also provided. Popular points of interest near the aparthotel include Olinas Kinshicho Shopping Mall, Tobacco & Salt Museum and Gokinimono Museum. The nearest airport is Tokyo Haneda International Airport, 17 km from SOLA HOTEL.
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    • The Hideout Tokyo
      Mid-range
      The Hideout Tokyo is set in Tokyo. In a prime location in the Taito district, this cosy hotel is located 1.5 km from Sensoji Temple. JR Yamanote Uguisudani Station is just a 4-minute walk away. The compact rooms at The Hideout Tokyo are equipped with a seating area and a flat-screen TV. Rooms come with a private bathroom. Complimentary breads, banana and coffee are served every morning. Tokyo Skytree is 2.9 km from The Hideout Tokyo, while Edo Tokyo Museum is 2.9 km from the property. Tokyo Haneda International Airport is 18 km away.
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    • Sumida Nagaya
      Budget-friendly
      Sumida Nagaya is situated in Tokyo, an 18-minute walk from Tokyo Skytree. Well situated in the Sumida Ward district, this guest house is set 2.6 km from Sensoji Temple. The property is 3.4 km from Edo Tokyo Museum and 7 km from Marunouchi Building. The guest house is equipped with a kitchenette with an electric kettle, microwave, toaster and fridge. Every room comes with a shared bathroom with a bath. An simple Japanese breakfast with rice balls and miso soup or a simple cereal is available daily at the property upon prior reservation. The nearest airport is Tokyo Haneda International Airport, 18 km from Sumida Nagaya.
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    • The Barn Tokyo
      Mid-range
      Well situated in the Taito district of Tokyo, The Barn Tokyo is set 300 metres from Shikian, 300 metres from Calligraphy Museum and 400 metres from Tokugawa Tsunayoshi Mausoleum Imperial Scroll Gate. With a garden, the 3-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, each with a private bathroom. The property is close to popular attractions like Kanei-ji Temple, Chosho-ji Temple and Kemmyo-in Temple. All guest rooms in the hotel are fitted with a kettle. The units in The Barn Tokyo are equipped with a flat-screen TV and a hairdryer. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Nippori South Park, Tokugawa Ietsuna's Mausoleum Gate Plaque and Kuroda Memorial Hall. The nearest airport is Tokyo Haneda International Airport, 19 km from The Barn Tokyo.
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    • Resol Poshtel Tokyo Asakusa
      Budget-friendly
      Ideally set in Tokyo, Resol Poshtel Tokyo Asakusa offers air-conditioned rooms, a shared lounge and free WiFi. The property is around 400 metres from Asakusa Public Hall, 500 metres from Edo Taito Traditional Crafts Center and 600 metres from Sogenji Temple. The property is close to popular attractions like Kinryu Park, Hozomon Gate and Honpo-ji Temple. Popular points of interest near the capsule hotel include Asakusa ROX Shopping Center, Drum Museum and Kappabashi-dori Shopping Street. The nearest airport is Tokyo Haneda International Airport, 18 km from Resol Poshtel Tokyo Asakusa.
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    • Hostel Chapter Two Tokyo
      Budget-friendly
      Conveniently situated in the Taito district of Tokyo, Hostel Chapter Two Tokyo is located 60 metres from Komagatado, 500 metres from Kaminarimon Gate Senso-ji and 500 metres from Ekimise Asakusa. With a shared lounge, the 1-star hostel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, each with a shared bathroom. The accommodation provides a shared kitchen, and luggage storage for guests. The hostel offers a terrace. Popular points of interest near Hostel Chapter Two Tokyo include Hozomon Gate, Chiisanagarasunohonno Museum and World Bags and Luggage Museum. The nearest airport is Tokyo Haneda International Airport, 17 km from the accommodation.
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    • No Borders Hostel
      Budget-friendly
      Located in Tokyo, 700 metres from Togoshi-ginza Shopping Street, No Borders Hostel provides air-conditioned rooms and free bikes. Among the facilities at this property are a shared kitchen and a shared lounge, along with free WiFi throughout the property. The property is close to popular attractions like Meguro Fudoson Ryusen-ji Temple, Kaifukuji Temple and Yakushi-ji Tokyo Annex Temple. All guest rooms in the guest house are fitted with a kettle. The shared bathroom is equipped with a shower and a hairdryer. Guest rooms will provide guests with a microwave. Popular points of interest near No Borders Hostel include Remy Gotanda Shopping Mall, Anyo-in Temple and Musashi Koyama Shopping Street Palm. The nearest airport is Tokyo Haneda International Airport, 9 km from the accommodation.
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    • Palace Hotel Tokyo
      Luxury
      Situated right in the heart of Marunouchi business district, Palace Hotel Tokyo is 5-star luxury accommodation boasting 7 restaurants, a spa and a free-access fitness centre and indoor swimming pool. It is directly connected to Otemachi Subway Station and an 8-minute walk from JR Tokyo Station. Free WiFi is provided in the entire area. Offering elegant and chic ambience, each spacious room comes with a large LCD TV, a blu-ray/DVD player and a safety box. A fridge and an electric kettle are also provided. The en suite bathroom includes a small TV, a bath tub and toiletries. While staying at Tokyo Palace Hotel, guests can enjoy a workout at the fitness gym, or receive rejuvenating treatments at the on-site Evian Spa Tokyo. The concierge desk can arrange various services for guests including mobile phone rentals. Tablet rentals, copy and fax services are available for an extra charge upon request at the front desk or club lounge. Guests can enjoy authentic Japanese culinary experiences in Wadakura restaurant, Tatsumi tempura restaurant and Kanesaka sushi restaurant. Crown offers exquisite French cuisine and the city views, while Grand Kitchen serves international dishes throughout the day. Located right next to the Imperial Palace, the hotel is a 10-minute walk from Ginza shopping area, and a 5-minute train ride from Akihabara electric town. Popular Tsukiji Fish Market can be reached within a 10-minute taxi ride. Airport limousine buses are available to/from Narita and Haneda airports at an extra charge.
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