Ice cold: the coolest new hotspots

17th September, 2013

The ski and snowboard world is dominated by big resorts. Skiers and boarders flock to St Anton in Austria, Verbier in Switzerland, Whistler in Canada, Aspen Snowmass and Vail in the US, Niseko in Japan and other big-name places with big marketing pockets, expansive terrain and mass market appeal.

In any enterprise, there will always be a competitor nipping at the heels of the leaders hoping to take a slice of their lucrative market. The snow world is the same. When you've ticked off the must-do resorts, check out those coming into broader fashion, so you can say "been there done that" before the masses, and the British or Australians, move in.

Of course we're not saying people don't know about these resorts already, some of these are far from the hidden gems of Castle, Whitefish and Silverton, but they are alternatives for those old school skiers lamenting the commercialisation of their long time favourites. So once you've done Bali, where do you go next? Lombok. Once you've done Whistler, Aspen, Niseko what is the next resort in the terms of natural progression?

Hakuba, the new Niseko

The trouble with Hakuba Japan's main island is that it has already been discovered by the Aussies who have become bored with Niseko. But it is still not a mass market favourite, yet, so we'll call it as we see it. The Hakuba Valley has a plethora of easily accessed resorts including the powder mania and tree skiing at Cortina and yes, the mountains are bigger, higher, steeper here than up north in Hokkaido. Snow nerds will argue over the metres of snowfall but we're haggling over eight to 12 metres of powder, so let's get real.

As written in The Age (Melbourne, Australia) on 13 September, 2013.   For more on this article see:


We have been telling people this for years!  

Back to news

More information

Contact us

To arrange a more personalised holiday, for more information about Hakuba and the region, or just any questions you can think of about skiing in Japan don‘t hesitate to contact us...

Send us your feedback and enquiries