Nozawa Onsen located in Nagano Prefecture near the Japan Sea side is a famous sightseeing spot as a hot spring where high quality sulfur spring water springs. In the hot spring town there is a spring called “Ogama”, you can make hot spring eggs (boiled eggs). In Nozawa Onsen, you can take a bath to be relaxed at each accommodation, but it is also exceptional to soak in outside hot springs including Oyu made in hot spring town.
The Nozawa Onsen ski resort spreads to the east side of the hot spring town and you can enjoy skiing and snowboarding from November to May. There is Yuzawa Shrine in Nozawa Onsen area. In September “Yuzawa Shrine festival / lantern festival” is held annually and brilliant fire dance is performed. Another thing you cannot miss in Nozawa Onsen is pickled Nozawana. In the Koganeya in the hot spring town, you can sample pickled vegetables like Nozawana
1. Spot Ranking in Nozawa Onsen area
Ogama is a natural treasure in a corner of Nozawa Onsen town. It is famous as a source springs where nearly 100 degrees hot water spews. Because the temperature of the five water reservoirs are slightly different from each other, so local people use them properly according to the application, such as washing and boiling vegetables. The especially well-known way is to make hot spring eggs (boiled eggs).
The hot spring eggs are sold at a nearby gift shop. However, since the hot water spouting from the Ogama is too hot and dangerous, tourists only look at it. Instead, you can experience hot spring egg making at “Mini Onsen Square” called “Yurari”. Another way to enjoy Ogama is to soak in the outside hot water called “Asagama no Yu”. It is known that it is effective for rheumatism and neuralgia.
The price is not specified, just put the amount of money you would like to pay in the Saisen Box.
From Iiyama station, take the direct bus “Nozawa Onsen Liner” and head for the terminal Nozawa Onsen bus stop. It is about 10 minutes on foot from the bus stop and the boarding time is 25 minutes.
4th. Koganeya Bussan shop
The Koganeya Bussan Store is a souvenir shop on the other side across the road from the source spring of the Ogama. As there is a water wheel next to the shop, you find it easily. There are many souvenirs from Nozawa Onsen in the store, but the special items are pickles and vegetables including Nozawana. Especially, “Hangoroshi” sold in the winter and “Minagoroshi” sold in the summer are popular. Both are extremely hot but if you are not good at it, you should try eating it with egg on the rice. It is good too. In addition, hot spring eggs made with Ogama and raw eggs for hot spring eggs to make in the mini hot spring open space “Yurari” are also sold at Koganeya.
In the Koganeya, you can get tea for free and sample pickles. Business hours are 8: 30-18: 30, 7 days a week.
From the Iiyama station, take the direct bus “Nozawa Onsen Liner” and head for the terminal Nozawa Onsen. It is about 10 minutes on foot from the bus stop and the boarding time is 25 minutes.
3rd. Yuzawa Shrine
Yuzawa shrine is a shrine near the village office in Nozawa Onsen. The Sochinju (center place to pray for local gods) of Nozawa Onsen was established in 1765 and big trees stand up side by side of the way. On the east side of the shrine, there is a “Kenmei Temple”.
This temple is also known as the birthplace of Nozawana. In Yuzawa Shrine “Yuzawa Shrine festival / lantern festival” is held every year on September 8th and 9th (the same day every year). It is a very spectacular festival where lanterns events such as flower lanterns are performed. Especially, “Sarutahiko no Mai (Japanese dance)” is a brave dance that people dressed as Tengu dance while wielding the torch bundled straw. It attracts many audiences.
Take the direct bus “Nozawa Onsen Liner” from Iiyama station to get there. It takes 25 minutes by bus. Yuzawa shrine is a 6-minute walk from Nozawa Onsen that is the last stop (near the tourist information center).
2nd. Nozawa Onsen Ski Resort
Nozawa Onsen Ski Resort was established in 1924 and has a long history. The ski slopes are wide and one of the largest in the country. In particular, Kaminohira slopes are well known as the gentle slopes and also known as the world’s best beginner slopes. There are 36 courses in total.
The long course that lets you slide down the length of 4500m from the summit is a special feature of the resort. Also, many events are held there such as the annual festivals called “Dozoshin Festival” on January 15th and “Sacred Light Night Winter Festival” on March 2nd.
The ski resort usually opens from late November to early May. One day ticket for gondola / lift is 4800 yen for adults.
Take a direct bus “Nozawa Onsen Liner” from Iiyama station and go to the Nozawa Onsen bus stop. It takes 25 minutes by bus. From the hot spring town of Nozawa Onsen to the ski resort, you need to take a tunnel-shaped moving walkway called “Yu-road”.
Oyu is in the center of Nozawa Onsen, and is a symbol of Nozawa Onsen. The original Oyu was built in the Edo era, and the current building was renewed in 1994. The architectural style is inherited from the Edo era, so it still has an emotional atmosphere. Oyu has long been called “Soyu,” which means “hot spring of the village” and has played an important role as a place for people living there to interact each other.
Spring quality is pure sulfur spring. It is effective for rheumatism, gastrointestinal and gynecological diseases.
Opening hours are 5: 00-23: 00, 7 days a week. There is no charging rules but please put the amount of money you would like to pay in the Saisen Box.
Take the direct bus “Nozawa Onsen Liner” from Iiyama station and get off at the terminal Nozawa Onsen (near the tourist information center). It takes about 6 minutes by foot. The boarding time is about 25 minutes.
2. Getting in
From Nagano station, take the Shinano Railway North Shinano Line going to Echigo Kawaguchi and get off at Iiyama station. The fare is 530 yen, and the boarding time is about 1 hour.
If you use the Tohoku Shinkansen, get on the Hokuriku Shinkansen Hakutaka 569 going to Kanazawa and get off at Iiyama station. The price is 2660 yen, and the boarding time is about 11 minutes.
3. Nagano Area list
Tateshina – Venus Line
Lake Suwa, Kami-Suwa Onsen and Shimo-Suwa Onsen