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Osorakan Snow Park - where you can ski on natural snow, despite being in Hiroshima

April 08, 2021
Hiroshima, the main city in the Chubu region, doesn’t generally have a reputation of being a place to enjoy skiing. However, even in Hiroshima there is a place where you can ski on freshly-fallen, natural snow. That place is "Osorakan Snow Park." It’s a popular ski resort, where many skiers and snowboarders gather each year from all across Japan to enjoy the unusually natural snow in the Chubu region. Here, we’ll tell you all about the charms of Osorakan Snow Park.

The resort's main selling point is snow created by the resort’s natural environment

In areas where there is not much snowfall, it’s common to create ski slopes using snowmaking machines. At Osorakan Snow Park, however, you can enjoy fluffy powder snow created entirely by nature. What makes this possible is the height of the highest mountain in the Chubu district - a peak that reaches 1,346 meters above sea level.

A ski resort in the Chubu region where you can enjoy natural snow is quite hard to come by, so Osorakan Snow Park has become a place visited by many skiers, mainly from the Chugoku and Kyushu regions.

As it was created by consolidating two existing ski resorts, the slopes are vast in scale. There’s also plenty of course variation, and an overwhelming number of reviews state that it’s “a ski resort you won't get tired of even if you ski all day long."

Another plus is the fact that each and every one of the courses is long and well maintained, so they’re easy to ski on. In particular, the continuous downhill slope, with an elevation difference of 420 meters, is incredibly popular thanks to its superb view of the Sea of Japan from the summit! It’s a course where you can fully enjoy the feel of natural snow.

Area layouts that are reassuring even for beginners

One reason why this resort is highly popular with beginners is that the course layouts are very easy to understand. At the foot of the slopes is a beginner course with a gentle incline, for example. There are also courses for beginners that branch off near the top of the mountain, but if you make a mistake, you may accidentally enter a competition course with much more dramatic variation, so make sure to check the ski slope map beforehand.

In front of the Rest House there is a "Family Square" which has activities for small children, such as an inflatable air dome and ride-on inflatable animals, so skiing with family is also highly recommended. Many reviews say that the skiing school is of high standard as well, so even complete beginners can feel at ease. It’s no exaggeration to say that this ski resort can accommodate your every need.

The "Bunasaka ski slope": famous for being a competition course

The Bunasaka ski slope, which extends almost in a straight line from the summit to the foot of the mountain, is a course for advanced skiers and sees a lot of crowds due to its use as a competition course during the ski season. As you can take a detour midway through to the forest course, which is aimed at beginner and intermediate skiers, it’s recommended for those who aren’t confident in their abilities. It’s also perfect for those who want to ski all the way down a long 1,500-meter in one go.

Osorakan's main course, the "Hiebatake ski slope"

Located next to Bunasaka is the Hiebatake ski slope. This course is for advanced skiers, and is a traditional course known to all skiers who prefer particularly challenging, steep slopes. This dramatically changing steep slope continues for about 1,000 meters. It’s one of the resort’s most recognizable courses - to the extent that when someone talks about Osorakan, the Hiebatake slope never goes unmentioned.

The Tateyama ski slope has several courses with completely compacted snow, making it a breeze to ski on. Except for certain two-person lifts, most of the slopes in this area are aimed at beginner and intermediate skiers, with a wide course width allowing for easy skiing. It’s particularly popular with families.

"Kayabata ski slope": an ultra-high difficulty course

The Kayabata ski slope’s upper and lower sections have completely different characteristics. The upper section is Osorakan's most advanced course, boasting a maximum inclination of 38°, whereas the lower section has a gentle slope with wider course width and just enough variation of its own. This course has been seeing quite a crowd of beginner skiers.

A flavor not to be missed: cutlet dishes made with local pork specialties

The ski slope cuisine at Osorakan Snow Park is rich in variety, with plenty to choose from including curry, udon noodles and okonomiyaki. A particularly popular dish at the restaurants are the cutlet dishes at "Osorakan Lodge".

The dishes, made with the juicy local brand pork "Kokubiton", are large enough to satisfy even the biggest eaters. What’s more, the breathtaking view from the Rest House will ensure you enjoy an elegant resort dining experience.

Getting to the resort is somewhat troublesome, so your best bet is to book a ride on one of the buses that goes directly there. An alternative is to book a local tour bus, or something along those lines. Depending on the hotel or lodge you stay at, there may also be a complimentary shuttle bus, so check what plans are available in advance.

However, considering it’s a ski resort you can get to easily from the Hiroshima area puts it in a great location. If you plan to go sightseeing in and around Hiroshima and your plan includes enough time to set aside a day for skiing, you’ll definitely want to check it out!

Enjoy the best quality snow in the Hiroshima area

Osorakan Snow Park is one of the few ski resorts in the Chugoku region that features mainly natural snow and courses rich in variation. It’s a large ski resort capable of satisfying countless skiers and snowboarders.

While there are some problems with gondola and ski lift mobility, many people visit there every year, seeking the magnificent snow of Osorakan. It’s a perfect place for those wanting to ski on historic, traditional ski slopes!

Pricing information and schedule may not be up to date and are subject to change without notice. Please check before your trip.

Related ski resorts

Osorakan Snow Park Hiroshima Prefecture

12/16 - 3/21
Longest run distance1,500 m
Maximum gradient38 °
Longest run1,500 m
Maximum38 °

Adult 2 people1 night

USD 44〜

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