Traveling in Joetsu / Myoko / Itoigawa
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Snowshoeing in Myoko Kogen
- Myoko Kogen provides some of the best powdery snow and slopes on the main Honshu island of Japan. The Myoko Kogen area only focuses on snow sports, with powderheads drifting to the region every winter due to the volume of snow. Everyone from children to retired folk, true beginners to budding professionals, are encouraged to take to the slopes. The area is best known for skiing and snowboarding; however, other snow sports are also offered. Snowshoeing is a popular activity for those who want to explore the backcountry and take things a little more slowly. A First time Snowshoeing Experience A First time Snowshoeing Experience Snowshoeing is a great way to get exercise and safely explore a new area of a mountain. Unlike board sports which are restricted to slopes, snowshoeing is more akin to hiking. There are three different courses for snowshoeing, ranging in difficulty. Each course takes about one and a half to two hours to complete, as long as participants follow the signposts. The signposts are bright, numbered and easy to follow. Maps can also be picked up in the information center. Learn History and Grab Gear at the Information Center Learn History and Grab Gear at the Information Center Learn History and Grab Gear at the Information Center The Myoko Kogen Visitor’s Center has everything one needs to begin snowshoeing. Myoko Kogen is a part of the Myoko Togakushi National Park, a thriving landscape known for its powdery snow, mountains, and volcanoes. The information center offers details on courses, rental gear, and guides. The topography and geology of the park is represented throughout the center through informative models and maps. Learn about the nature of the area and the best ways to stay safe during your snowshoeing journey. The information center offers rental snowshoes for 1,000 yen per day. Be aware that snowshoes and poles are the only available equipment to rent, so you will need to bring your own snow clothes, warmers, and food. Choose from a Beginner or Advanced Course Choose from a Beginner or Advanced Course There are three courses to choose from: the beginner Squirrel course, the intermediate Fox course, and the long and advanced Rabbit course. The Squirrel Course is flat and winds around a forest, making it the best choice for first-timers and children. The Fox Course crosses through a thicker forest with steeper inclines, making it difficult and a little intimidating for first timers. The course is named after Fox Pond, a small pond that the trail loops around towards the end. The Rabbit Course goes higher up Mt. Myoko and is an extended version of the Fox Course. The route goes uphill and gives excellent views on clear days. The trails are all self-guided and easy to follow. Guides are also available to help for 300 yen from the information center. Some Quick Tips Some Quick Tips Some Quick Tips The courses are free to enter, but be sure to double check the weather conditions and rules with the staff at the information center before departing. The courses are well marked but bear in mind that the area can receive a lot of snow throughout the day. First-time snowshoers should always bring a map and plenty of warm clothes to stay safe and comfortable. Seeing the biodiversity of Myoko Kogen is an advantage that snowshoeing has over skiing or snowboarding. All of the courses traverse through untamed forests, with more animals tending to come out deeper in the mountain, away from the board sport courses. Some Quick Tips ©NAVITIME JAPAN. Travel Info Check out our travel tips to make your trip better!
- 7. March. 2019
Sado Island Overview
- Sado Island is located off the coast of Niigata. The island is big yet sparsely populated and offers plenty of interesting things to do from hiking through spectacular scenery to taking part in interesting cultural activities such as taiko drumming and Noh performances. Sado Island has a rich and turbulent history. Archeological evidence suggests that people lived on the island as early as the Jomon period (14000-800 BC). For a long time, the island was a place where people were sent as a punishment for various crimes. Being sent to Sado was regarded as a harsh punishment indeed, second only to the death sentence. Due to its remoteness, those banished to the island were not expected to ever get a chance to return to the mainland. The practice of exiling people to Sado lasted for about 1,000 years with the last known case taking place in 1700.In 1601, gold was found on Sado and a big gold mine was opened near Aikawa in the western part of the island. At its peak, around 400 kg of gold was produced here annually. The gold mine contributed to a surge of the population on the island. At most, around 125,000 people lived on Sado Island. Since then, the area has seen a decline in its population and today it is less than half of what it was at its peak. Currently, the figure sits at 60,000 people, of which about one third is over 65 years old.Due to the somewhat dark history of Sado, it is still considered a “bad place” to some. According to a representative of the tourism association it’s not uncommon for them to receive phone calls inquiring about whether it is safe to visit the island today.But from our own experience, Sado isn’t only a very safe place, it is also one that we definitely think is worth visiting. The island is breathtakingly beautiful at places, particularly its barren coastline deserves a special mention. It is also a place with a rich history and has a plethora of interesting cultural experiences that any visitor easily can enjoy. The island is known for its many “noh” theater stages, with several performances taking place during the summer months.Overseas, Sado is perhaps most well-known thanks to Kodo, a taiko drumming group that was formed in 1981. Though based in Sado, the group regularly tour the rest of the country as well as sometimes making worldwide tours. Kodo has gathered a strong following of international fans over the years and organize an annual festival called “Earth Celebration” which takes place over three days in August. This is one of the biggest annual events on the island, attracting thousands of visitors from all over the world.Sado Island is connected by ferries to the Japanese mainland, with lines servicing Niigata City as well as Teradomari and Naoetsu, two smaller cities also located in Niigata Prefecture. ©NAVITIME JAPAN. Travel Info Check out our travel tips to make your trip better!
- 9. November. 2017
- Joetsushiritsusuizoku Museum umigatari
- Nigata Pref. Jouetsushi Gochi 2-15-15
Newly opened in June 2018. It is located on the Naoetsu beach just 10 minutes walk from Naoetsu station of Echigo tokimeki railway-4 stations away from Joetsu Myoko station on Hokuriku Shinkansen...
- Honganji Kokufu Betsuin Temple
- Niigata Joetsu-shi Kokufu 1-7-1
- Jokoji Temple
- Niigata Joetsu-shi Teramachi 2-6-45
- Kyu-Shidancho-Kansha (Old Japanese Army Divisional Commander's Official Residence)
- Historical Monument
- Niigata Joetsu-shi Omachi 2-3-30
- Uesugi Kenshin Statue
- Other Historic Site/Building
- Niigata Joetsu-shi Nakayashiki (Kasuga Yamajo Ato)/
Found along the northwestern coast of Japan, Niigata prefecture is celebrated for its high-quality rice and breathtaking nature, most notably its spectacular mountains, whose white peaks draw in snow sports lovers from far and wide over the winter months. Hit the slopes at Yuzawa, pick out your favourite modern artist at Echigo Tsumari, or take a ferry over to Sado Island for an extra adventure.
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