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How to get to Yamanouchi

Most visitors to Yamanouchi will access the town from Nagano City (how to get to Nagano).

A useful pass for visiting Yamanouchi is the "Snow Monkey Pass", a discount ticket that combines unlimited use of Nagaden trains and buses between Nagano and Yamanouchi with admission to the monkey park for 3600 yen. The pass is valid on two consecutive calendar days and covers all trains between Nagano and Yudanaka (including limited express trains), express buses between Nagano and the Snow Monkey Park bus stop and local buses between Yudanaka and Kanbayashi Onsen. It can be purchased at Nagaden Nagano Station.

By train from Nagano

Nagaden (Nagano Electric Railway) operates one to two trains per hour between Nagano (underground Nagaden Nagano Station, next to JR Nagano Station) and Yamanouchi (Yudanaka Station). About half of the trains are local (70 minutes, 1190 yen one way, one transfer at Shinshu-Nakano Station along the way) and half are limited express (50 minutes, 1290 yen one way, direct). The trains are not covered by the Japan Rail Pass.

By express bus from Nagano

Nagaden operates express buses between Nagano (East Exit of Nagano Station) and Shiga Kogen. There are four buses per day in summer and around ten buses per day in winter. The buses do not stop in central Yudanaka or Shibu Onsen, but they stop at the Snow Monkey Park bus stop (40 minutes, 1500 yen one way) from where the Jigokudani Monkey Park can be reached. In Shiga Kogen, all buses stop at Hasuike (70 minutes, 1800 yen), and some continue in direction of either Oku Shiga Kogen or Mount Yokoteyama.

By bus from Kusatsu Onsen

From late April to early November, Yamanouchi and Kusatsu Onsen are connected with each other by hourly bus connections via Mount Shirane (currently out of service) where a transfer of buses is required. The bus ride between Yamanouchi (Yudanaka Station) and Mount Shirane takes 70 minutes and costs 1700 yen one way, and buses also serve the Snow Monkey Park bus stop. The ride between Mount Shirane and Kusatsu Onsen takes 30 minutes and costs 1150 yen. Some of the buses between Mount Shirane and Kusatsu Onsen are operated by JR and are covered by the Japan Rail Pass. All other buses are not covered by the pass.

Above fees and schedules are subject to change. Be sure to check current yen exchange rates.

Getting around

Yamanouchi is a municipality in northern Nagano Prefecture. Western Yamanouchi is relatively flat and consists of the area's populated areas, including the hot spring resort towns of Yudanaka Onsen and Shibu Onsen. East of those towns, Yamanouchi becomes mountainous and only sparsely populated. This is where the Jigokudani Monkey Park and Shiga Kogen are located.

Trains go only as far as Yudanaka Station. From Yudanaka Station, there are bus lines to Shiga Kogen (about one bus per hour) and Kanbayashi Onsen (also about one bus per hour). Both bus lines stop at Shibu Onsen and then at Kanbayashi Onsen, from where a hiking trail leads to the Jigokudani Monkey Park. Note that buses along the Shiga Kogen line stop at the "Snow Monkey Park (Kanbayashi Onsen-guchi)" bus stop as opposed to the "Kanbayashi Onsen" bus stop, which is a few steps closer to the trailhead.

Map of Shiga Kogen in winter:

Hotels around Yamanouchi

    • Yudanaka Seifu-so
      A traditional ryokan with wooden building by Yudanaka Station. Unique onsen - private, open-air, apple, leaf baths etc.
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    • Senjukaku
      Luxury
      Boasting open-air hot spring baths, a heated indoor pool and beautiful Japanese gardens, Senjukaku offers traditional Japanese-style accommodation that has a historic charm. Jigokudani Snow Monkey Park is a 15-minute drive away. Offering mountain views, all rooms are fitted with traditional tatami (woven-straw) flooring and a low table with seating cushions. In-room amenities include a flat-screen TV and a fridge. The en suite bathroom comes with a hairdryer and free toiletries. Free WiFi is available in all rooms. While staying at Senjukaku Ryokan, guests can unwind at the spacious public bathing area or reserve one of the cosy family baths for private use. There is an art gallery space at the lobby, showcasing Japanese drawings. A gift shop is also available on site. The ryokan serves various seasonal Japanese dishes, prepared with organic vegetables and local beef. The property offers free pick-up shuttles from Yudanaka Station, an 8-minute drive away.
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    • Yudanaka Onsen Yamazakiya
      Mid-range
      Only a 10-minute drive from Snow Monkey Park, Yudanaka Onsen Yamazakiya offers simple Japanese-style accommodations with free Wi-Fi. Guests can refresh in the public hot-spring baths or relax by the traditional garden. A free shuttle is available from Yudanaka Train Station, which is a 5-minute drive away. The air-conditioned rooms feature tatami (woven-straw) floors and Japanese futon bedding. Each room comes with a TV, a fridge and an electric kettle with green tea bags. Japanese Yukata robes are provided and guests can enjoy views of the river or of the traditional stone-paved streets. Bathrooms and toilets are shared. Local products can be purchased at the souvenir shop and relaxing massages can be requested for extra costs. A karaoke room and ski storage is available. Traditional multi-course meals are served for dinner and a Japanese set-menu for breakfast. All meals are served at the dining room. Yamazakiya Yudanaka Onsen is a 30-minute drive from Shiga Kogen Sun Valley Ski Resort and a 60-minute drive from JR Nagano Train Station. If requested 1 day in advance, a free shuttle is offered to Snow Monkey Park.
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    • Yudanaka Yasuragi
      Mid-range
      A small 6-room inn with Ryokan meals and cosy interiors, Yasuragi is just a few minutes drive to Jigokudani Monkey Park and an 8-minute walk from Yudanaka Train Station. Hot-spring baths are featured. Free WiFi is available throughout the property and free pick-up service from Yudanaka Station is provided. Yasuragi Innfs Japanese-style rooms have tatami (woven-straw) floors, futon beds and a flat-screen TV. Each room is air-conditioned in summer while heating and a kotatsu leg-warming table are available in winter. A fridge, an electric kettle and yukata robes are provided. All guests have access to the on-site hot spring public baths, and they can be reserved for private use. (please inquire at the front desk for more information.) Shiga-Kogen Ski Park and North Shiga Ski Park are both a 15-minute drive away. The property offers a free shuttle to nearby locations upon request, including Yudanaka Train Station. Parking is free. There is a convenience store right behind the inn.
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    • Daymaruya Ryokan
      Budget-friendly
      At Daymaruya Ryokan, guests can enjoy hot-spring baths and traditional Japanese-style accommodations with free wired internet access. A free shuttle is available from Yudanaka Train Station, which is a 5-minute drive away. The air-conditioned rooms feature tatami (woven-straw) floors and Japanese futon bedding. Each includes a TV, a fridge and an electric kettle with green tea bags. Comes with a private toilet and Yukata robes. Bathrooms are shared. The property offers free luggage and shuttle services upon request. Free WiFi is available near the reception and common area located on the second floor. Japanese meals featuring local ingredients are served at the guestsf rooms with a personal Nakai-san attendant service. Ski and luggage storages are available at the front desk. Ryokan Daymaruya is a 15-minute drive from Snow Monkey Park and a 25-minute drive from Shiga Kogen Ski Resort. Heiwa Kannon is a 10-minute walk away.
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    • AIBIYA
      Budget-friendly
      Offering a barbecue and ski storage space, AIBIYA is located in Yamanouchi in the Nagano Region, 4.1 km from Jigokudani Monkey Park. Each room at this property features air-conditioning and heating, and low beds with individual lights. All rooms have a tatami (woven-straw) floor where guests can unwind and relax. Free WiFi is available throughout the entire property. Ryuoo Ski Park is 6 km from AIBIYA, while Hasuike Pond is 7 km away. A complimentary breakfast is served, consisting of bread, yogurt, seasonal fruits and coffee. Guests will also find a shop featuring local artworks on site.
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    • Yudanaka Tawaraya Ryokan
      Luxury
      A 5-minute walk from Yudanaka Train Station, Tawaraya offers Japanese-style accommodations with free Wi-Fi and a flat-screen TV. Guests can relax in the indoor and outdoor hot-spring baths and wear colorful Japanese Yukata robes. Massages can be requested for an extra cost. The air-conditioned rooms feature tatami (woven-straw) floors and Japanese futon bedding. A safety deposit box, a fridge and an electric kettle with green tea bags are included in each. Rooms come with a private toilet but bathrooms are shared with all other guests. An outdoor hot-spring bath can be reserved for private-use and guests can enjoy looking out into the traditional garden. Dry cleaning and daily newspaper services are available at the front desk. Local products can be purchased at the souvenir shop. Traditional multi-course meals featuring local ingredients are served for dinner and a Japanese set-menu for breakfast. All meals are served at the dining room. Tawaraya Ryokan is a 10-minute drive from Snow Monkey Park and a 15-minute walk from Heiwa Kannon. Shiga Kogen Ski Resort is a 30-minute drive away.
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    • Suminoyu
      Mid-range
      Located in the Shibu hot-spring district, guests can enjoy indoor and outdoor hot-spring baths at Suminoyu. Massages can be requested and a footbath is also available for extra relaxation. A free shuttle is offered from Yudanaka Train Station, which is a 10-minute drive away. The air-conditioned rooms have tatami (woven-straw) floors and Japanese futon bedding. A TV, fridge and an electric kettle with green tea bags are provided in each. Rooms come with a private toilet but bathrooms are shared. Free Wi-Fi is accessible at the lobby and local products can be purchased at the gift shop. Luggage storage is available. Japanese dishes featuring local ingredients are available at the ryokan. Dinner is served in a private dining room. Suminoyu Inn is a 10-minute drive from Snow Monkey Park and a 25-minute drive from Shiga Kogen Ski Resort. Heiwa Kannon is a 15-minute walk away.
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    • Minshuku Miyama
      Budget-friendly
      Minshuku Miyama offers Japanese-style accommodations with free Wi-Fi. Guests can relax in the public outdoor hot-spring baths and wear Japanese Yukata robes. A free shuttle is available from Yudanaka Train Station, which is a 10-minute drive away and must be reserved at time of booking. The rooms feature heating facilities, tatami (woven-straw) floors and Japanese futon bedding. A fan, a TV and an electric kettle with green tea bags are included in each. Bathrooms and toilets are shared. A Japanese set menu is available at the dining room. Breakfast and dinner are served. Miyama Minshuku Inn is a 15-minute drive from Snow Monkey Park and a 10-minute drive from Heiwa Kannon. Shiga Kogen Ski Resort is a 20-minute drive away.
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    • Wafu no Yado Masuya
      Mid-range
      On just a 5-minute drive from Yudanaka Station, Wafu no Yado Masuya features beautiful Japanese-style rooms, hot spring baths and free Wi-Fi. Some rooms boast a private outdoor hot spring bath. Masuya Wafu no Yado is a 15-minute drive from the Jigokudani Snow Monkey Park, as well as from the Heiwa Kannon (Peace Statue). Zenko-ji Temple is an hourfs drive away. The spacious, bright rooms at Masuya are comfortably furnished with tatami-mat flooring and traditional futon bedding. They come with a seating area, satellite TV and a fridge. Guests at the Wafu no Yado can soak in spacious indoor and outdoor hot spring baths, or take a flower pressing class. Ladies can choose from 50 colourful gowns to use. The Japanese hot spring experience is complete with award-winning multi-course dinners, served in private dining rooms. Delicious local specialities can also be ordered separately.
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    • a‰·ò¬Î‰®—·ŠÙ
      Mid-range
      Located in the historical Shibu Onsen district, a‰·ò¬Î‰®—·ŠÙ offers both private and dormitory-style guest rooms as well as an on-site restaurant where local dishes, wines and craft beers are available. All rooms at a‰·ò¬Î‰®—·ŠÙ have air conditioning. There is no OnsenEBath in a‰·ò¬Î‰®—·ŠÙ, however, staying guests at a‰·ò¬Î‰®—·ŠÙ can enjoy 9 public baths in Shibu onsen(free). There are 2 shower rooms in a‰·ò¬Î‰®—·ŠÙ. At an additional fee, staying guests at a‰·ò¬Î‰®—·ŠÙ can enjoy exclusive evening entrance to Yoroduya's natural hot spring bath Momoyama Buro, which is registered as a tangible cultural property. The property provides shuttle services to and from Momoyama Buro and Jigokudani Monkey Park, which are under a 5-minute bus ride away. Pick up service from Yudanaka station is available between 15:00-17:30 for check in guest(free), booking in advance is essential.
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