A visit to Yudanaka’s snow monkeys makes a fantastic side trip from Hakuba ski resort. Though it is very easily done in a day, we recommend setting aside the time to spend a night in the (extremely lovely) hot spring town of Yudanaka, then getting up early to visit the monkeys before the tour bus crowds arrive.
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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Important notice: We are pleased to be able to offer so many amazing experiences in Japan. However, we are sorry that we can only include these as a part of a full Japan holiday package which includes your accommodation and transport alongside the experiences presented in this section of the web site.
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