Don't miss the famous snow monkeys enjoying bath time at Yudanaka Onsen.
Japan's most famous primates are the 'snow monkeys' of the Jigokudani hot springs near Yudanaka Onsen. To escape the chill of winter, the monkeys love to play in the natural hot spring baths. It's a fantastic spectacle; unperturbed by humans and their cameras, whole families of monkeys eat, wash, splash around and even have snowball fights.
When to go: While there's only snow on the ground at Yudanaka Onsen in winter (December to March), helped by the lure of food the monkeys play around the hot springs all year round.
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This is a simple little package that proves it needn't break the bank to go on a winter sports holiday in Japan.
Spend four nights at a very friendly lodge in Hakuba, one of Japan's best ski resorts, sandwiched by nights in Tokyo with time for cultural sightseeing in the country's capital.