Biwako Valley is located in Otsu city in Shiga Prefecture, by the western shores - and affording fine views of - Lake Biwa. At just 40km or so from central Kyoto, it is the nearest ski hill from the city. The fast Ropeway takes people from the base car parks to the slopes. For the 2018-2019 season, the Giant quad lift has enjoyed a 'renewal'.
The Biwako Valley ski resort has been operating since 1965. The Ropeway and other attractions are popular for sightseeing throughout the year.
Shiga Prefecture is part of the Kansai region in the western region of the main island of Honshu. Lake Biwa is the largest freshwater in Japan located at the centre of Shiga Prefecture. Most of the ski hills in Shiga Prefecture are found in the region to the north west of Lake Biwa. Be sure not to confuse Shiga Prefecture with the popular ‘Shiga Kogen’ resort region of Nagano Prefecture – they are totally un-related.
Biwako Valley Snow Depth Statistics
Official snow depth numbers from the current season and previous season
Various bus services from Osaka and Kyoto to Biwako Valley are available.
31.3km from the Kyoto Higashi IC on the Meishin Expressway
57km from the Wakasa Kaminaka IC on the Maizuru Wakasa Expressway
60.5km from the Kinomoto IC on the Hokuriku Expressway
Nearest national route: Route 161 (3.1km away)
Biwako Valley is about 31km north of the Kyoto Higashi IC on the Meishin Expressway.
From Kyoto, head north on Route 161. The resort is well signposted.
At the time of writing more than 40% of the ski hills in Japan have still not updated their own information for the upcoming season - even some of the larger ones! We are continuing to manually check and update information within SnowJapan on a daily basis, but for the moment things remain a mix of new and old. 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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