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Hokkaido Powder Unlimited

Niseko - Asahikawa - Furano
15 days

Hokkaido is, in our opinion, the best place in the world for the committed powder-hungry skier or rider. In the path of consistent weather systems that bring the cold air across the Sea of Japan from Siberia, this results in a blanket of deep white snow enveloping the entire island. And because it is dry snow, it's perfect snow! 

Focusing on the deep powder resorts of Hokkaido Island, this itinerary includes several contrasting resorts and backcountry utopias: international ski-Mecca Niseko; peaceful Rusutsu; authentic Furano and wild Asahidake. We've got you catching your breath in Sapporo mid-way through, but this could to omitted if you have a compulsion to keep your ski boots on. Alternatively, you could extend your itinerary with time in Tokyo or Kyoto on the way home.

Content & Map

Day-By-Day Itinerary

Day 1
Depart from the U.K., flying to Hokkaido Island in Japan.
Day 2
Arrive in New Chitose Airport and transfer directly to Niseko. Settle in to your accommodation in the heart of Hirafu Village.
Days 3 - 7
Five days skiing or snowboarding in and around Niseko. We can hire backcountry guides, make full day excursions to nearby Rusutsu, Moiwa or Kiroro and / or head off snowcat skiing for the day.
Day 8
Catch the train from Kutchan Station (very close to Niseko), which takes you via Otaru and Sapporo before arriving in Asahikawa City. You have time to break the journey at the Yoichi whisky distillery and / or Sapporo City itself en route. Settle in to your accommodation in Asahikawa, in the heart of Hokkaido Island.
Day 9
Spend the day skiing in Kamui Ski Links, the local ski field to Asahikawa. Deserted slopes and untracked powder stashes await.
Day 10
Head out cat skiing in Otoe for the day, perhaps Hokkaido's best mechanised ski mountain.
Day 11
Make your way to Asahidake mountain, where you meet your guide and spend the day riding the ropeway. On a good day, you'll get a maximum of 10 ascents / laps on this - the best freeride mountain (volcano) in Japan. Road transfer to Furano in the late afternoon with your ski guide and check in to your hotel in Kitanomine Village.
Days 12-14
Three full days in the Furano region. One day (at least) on Furano mountain and then you have a coupe of days to explore nearby resorts such as Tomamu or Sahoro. For the more adventurous and if you want to earn your turns, then head out ski touring in the Daisetsuzan National Park.
Day 15
Make your way back to Sapporo Chitose Airport and fly home to the UK, connecting either via Tokyo, Helsinki or Hong Kong.

Suggestions & Variations

With no set departures or fixed dates this itinerary can be extended, or even curtailed, to suit your available dates or match your budget.

There are two regions to explore on Hokkaido Island - the western resorts (Niseko, Rusutsu, Moiwa and Kiroro) and then the central resorts (Furano, Kamui, Tomamu, Sahoro and Yubari). They are quite different from each other and your balance of time between these two regions should reflect your objectives and preferences.

Western Hokkaido has some great terrain, the goods can be easily accessed from the lifts, there are several cat ski operations and it's all on a plate. But its busy, the is Japan-ski-central, and it's more difficult to find fresh tracks, most especially during December and January.

Central Hokkaido is quieter, the mountains (well, volcano's) just bigger and the rewards greater. But you have to work for it - there is some travelling to get around the region and you're pretty helpless without a ski guide.

This is our home turf. This is our back yard. Talk to us.

What would this holiday cost?

Obviously, cost depends on which accommodation you choose, how many excursions and activities you want to book, whether you wish to include ski hire and local backcountry guides, etc.

An indicative lead-in price for this 13-day itinerary would be circa £2,300 per person to £2,500 per person, including on moderate accommodation (mid / low season), transfers, lift passes, Japanese domestic flights and economy class flights from the UK.

However, this doesn't include ski guides, which would be considered essential for several days at the vey least if you are going to get the most form your time. Budget for circa £550 per day for a private guide, sharing this cost between however many of you there are.

We don't have to include international flights. However, by keeping it all within one package, your arrangements are protected by ATOL. 

Different Snow strive to offer the most competitive prices in all instances. However, we pride ourselves first and foremost on quality - we are an independent specialist tour operator and, therefore, are not beholden to any supplier. We make our decisions based only on who's best in each and every instance.

What our customers say

5 star rating

Our customers rate us 'Excellent'

I can’t rate Different Snow highly enough...

They put together a well thought out and carefully researched tailored three week trip. Different Snow’s guidance notes and travellers’ aid pack were comprehensive and really well thought out. Their recommendations for hotels, sightseeing, entertainment and dining were spot on.

David  ·  TrustPilot (verified review)

We had a trip of a lifetime holiday

Different Snow presented us with an excellent itinerary to suit our budget and accommodated specific requests. We had a whistlestop tour of Tokyo followed by great powder skiing in Hakuba then a cultural exploration of Kyoto. A fascinating and rewarding trip!

S Macquaker  ·  TrustPilot (verified review)

Please visit our TrustPilot page to read the full reviews.

Begin your journey
How to book

It's pretty straight forward. You simply need to take the first step by getting in contact with us...


Give us a call, or fill in the enquiry form, or send us an email. We’ll listen, give advice and make suggestions.


We create a tailor-made itinerary proposal and email this to you. Together, we then refine it until it is just as you want.


A 20% deposit secures the booking. The balance payment is not due until 10 weeks before departure.

Travel Pack

We post out your comprehensive travel pack, which also includes all our local contacts and our invaluable ‘How To…’ guides.