Maiko Snow Resort is located in Minamiuonuma city, close to the Shiozawa Ishiuchi IC exit on the Kanetsu Expressway and about ten minutes from the central area of Yuzawa town. The resort has two main bases (Maiko and Nagamine) and three main areas (Maiko, Nagamine and Okusoeji). Part of what is now the Maiko area originally opened in 1959 and the resort has changed names a number of times over the years. The Maiko area is home to gentler slopes, snow parks and Maiko Kogen Hotel. The Nagamine area features the main Day Centre and Maiko Gondola which goes up to the popular slopes of the Okusoeji bowl area of the resort. The best snow conditions can usually be found at Okusoeji as well as some fine mountainous scenery.
Minamiuonuma city and neighbouring Yuzawa town - located just over 200km to the north north-west of the Tokyo region in Niigata Prefecture - are together home to over 20 individual ski and snowboard resorts, including some of the most well-known ski resorts in Japan. With easy and quick access by both train and road and a wide choice in a relatively compact area, this region is one of the most popular ski destinations in Japan. The region usually enjoys very heavy and consistent snowfall each winter and with Yuzawa town also being the inspiration and setting of the famous Nobel prize-winning novel Yukiguni (Snow Country), it can certainly lay claim to being the original 'Snow Country'.
Niigata Prefecture is located in the central region of Honshu to the north of Tokyo and has a 250km long coastline facing the Sea of Japan. Convenient transportation links make Niigata very easy to get to from Tokyo and other surrounding regions. Most of the larger ski and snowboard resorts in Niigata Prefecture are concentrated in the southern regions around Yuzawa town, Minamiuonuma city and Myoko city.
Ski and snowboard lessons are available at Maiko Snow Resort. There are a number of independent ski and snowboard schools that cover the Yuzawa area and offer lessons in English - please check the Lessons in English section for current listings on SnowJapan.
Ski and snowboard equipment rental is available. Ski and snowboard wear rental is also available.
There are two 'Smile Kids Parks' at Maiko Snow Resort - one by the Day Ski Centre and the other in the Maiko Area. Each are 500 yen to enter.
'Maiko Snow Land' is a 400m sledging course next to the Maiko Family lift in the Maiko Area. Entry is free and the area is open 10:00am-4:00pm on Saturdays and 10:00am-3:00pm on Sundays and holidays. Sledge rental is available for a 300 yen (one time) and 500 yen (two times).
Banana Boat rides and Snow Mobile Experience rides are also available in the Maiko Area.
There is a 'Kids Room' (child car) on the 2nd Floor of the gondola base building. Charges are 1,200 yen per hour, available for children ages 2-6.
There are few snow park areas at Maiko Snow Resort including the Maiko Snow Park 'Garden', 'Bank Yard' and the 'Electric Step Up Park' - located in the Maiko Area of the resort. There is also an ungroomed 'Peak Performance Off-Piste Zone' in the Nagamine Area, which opens depending on snow conditions.
Maiko Snow Resort Season & Opening Times
Typical season is from Mid December until Early April
Weekends and holidays
Normally open from 8:00am until 5:00pm
Normally open from 8:30am until 5:00pm
'Nighta' (night skiing)
Weekends and holidays
Maiko Snow Resort is normally open from 8:30am until 5:00pm on weekdays and from 8:00am until 5:00pm on weekends during the daytime.
Nighta is scheduled for from 4:00pm until 8:00pm in part of the Maiko Area during the main season, from Friday 28th December 2018 until 16th March 2019.
Maiko Snow Resort Lift Ticket Charges
Elementary School age
High School age
55 years & over
1 Lift Coupon
Gondola (1 time)
The 5 Hour ticket is valid for 5 hours from the time of purchase.
The full day lift ticket passes include access to nighta.
The 'Sanroku Ticket' is valid on the Number 1, Number 2 and Family ski lifts in the Maiko Area of the resort for the whole day.
Children's Day: Third Sunday of the month - 1 day pass for elementary school children is free
Women's Day: Every Wednesday (except 2nd January 2019) - 1 day pass for men is 3,600 yen (other extras included)
Men's Day: Every Thursday (except 3rd January and 21st March 2019) - 1 day pass for men is 3,600 yen
Getting to Maiko Snow Resort
By public transport
8.8km from Echigo Yuzawa Station on the Joetsu Shinkansen line
2.7km from Ishiuchi Station on the Joetsu Line
8.8km from Echigo Yuzawa Station on the Hokuhoku Line
Maiko Snow Resort is less than 3km from the small local Ishiuchi Station. However, most people arriving by train use the free shuttle bus from the East Exit of Echigo Yuzawa Station which is just under 9km from Maiko Snow Resort.
Echigo Yuzawa Station is serviced by the local Joetsu line and the Joetsu Shinkansen bullet train line and connections to the Hokuhoku line are also available.
A free shuttle bus is available from the East Exit of Echigo Yuzawa Station to Maiko Snow Resort. The journey takes about 30 minutes.
A taxi journey from Echigo Yuzawa Station to the Maiko Area costs around 2,900 yen and to the Day Centre area costs around 3,400 yen.
0.6km from the Shiozawa Ishiuchi IC on the Kanetsu Expressway
9.6km from the Yuzawa IC on the Kanetsu Expressway
13km from the Muikamachi IC on the Kanetsu Expressway
Nearest national route: Route 17 (1.7km away)
Nearest prefecture road: Prefecture Road 28
There are two bases at Maiko Snow Resort.
The Maiko Area is less than 1km from the Shiozawa Ishiuchi IC exit of the Kanetsu Expressway. At the IC exit, go straight ahead and follow the road up to the main parking area on the right hand side.
The Nagamine Area is where the main Day Centre and Gondola is located and for many this is considered the main base of Maiko. At the Shiozawa Ishiuchi IC exit traffic lights, turn left and after just over 1km follow the signs by turning right to head up to the resort car park.
The 2018-2019 winter season is approaching! Hurray!
At the time of writing more than 60% of the ski hills in Japan have still not updated their own information for the upcoming season. We are continuing to manually update the information on these ski resort pages of SnowJapan but for the moment things are unavoidably a mix of old and new. In most cases ski resorts open and close around the same dates each season, so even if the planned season dates shown on this page are still from the 2017-2018 season, that is usually a good indication of what to expect this time round.
For more details and explanations about the information presented on this page,
please read this.
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