【Hakuba Village】5 Recommended Stargazing Spots

Hello everyone,

When speaking of the pleasures of traveling to Hakuba Village, “hiking, gourmet food, and camping” often come to mind. However, what about the night? Since it’s a special trip, why not step outside boldly instead of just sleeping soundly in your hotel or cottage?

Because of its high altitude, Hakuba Village has clear air and is an ideal place for stargazing. Here are five recommended stargazing spots in Hakuba Village.

Hakuba Village’s Stargazing is The Best

Stargazing in Hakuba Village offers an experience that you cannot find in the city. The village is blessed with nature, and because the air is clear and there is little light pollution, the stars look very beautiful.

There are several attractions of stargazing in Hakuba Village:

  • The high altitude and dry air enhance the brightness of the stars.
  • Surrounded by mountains, the night temperatures are low, making the colors of the stars vivid.
  • Professional guides hold stargazing events where you can learn about constellations and celestial bodies.
  • Hakuba Village is easily accessible by Shinkansen or bus.

How about spending some time stargazing in Hakuba Village to get away from everyday life?

The stars in Hakuba Village are unforgettable once you see them. Please experience stargazing in Hakuba Village.

Preparation is Key for Stargazing

To enjoy stargazing, it is important to keep a few points in mind.

Cold Weather Measures

Admiring the winter night sky is wonderful, but be mindful of the cold. Neglecting to prepare for the cold can lead to health problems like colds or frostbite. Here are some recommended items and methods for staying warm while stargazing in winter.

  • Bring thick clothing and warm gear, as nighttime temperatures can drop unexpectedly.
  • Carry a warm drink to keep your body warm while you enjoy stargazing.

Essential Cold Weather Gear

  • Heat packs: Place them in your socks or gloves.
  • Insulated bottle: Bring one that can keep drinks warm.
  • Blanket: Use one to block the ground’s cold air.
  • Outer layer: Wear windproof and waterproof jackets or coats.
  • Hat: Wear one that covers your ears and neck well.
  • Gloves: Ensure they cover your fingertips completely.
  • Scarf: Wrap one around your neck well.
  • Socks: Use thick socks.

Ensure to cover areas where heat can easily escape, such as the neck, wrists, and ankles, effectively.

Points to Consider Besides Cold Weather

Additionally, pay attention to the following points:

  • Choose Comfortable Clothing: Stargazing involves spending a long time outdoors. Wear comfortable clothing like layered outfits or tracksuits.
  • Do Not Sit Directly on the Ground: Use chairs or mats to sit or lie down. To block the ground’s cold air, use insulating items like aluminum sheets or thermal sheets.
  • Maintain Body Temperature: Often, you will remain still while stargazing. Do exercises or stretches periodically to promote blood circulation. Also, have snacks or sweets to ensure you’re topping up your energy.

By introducing these cold-weather items and methods, you can enjoy stargazing comfortably even in the cold.

Confirm the Rules for Observation Spots

When stargazing, it is essential to check the rules of the observation spot.

Usage Time

The best time for stargazing is from 9:00 PM to about midnight. During this period, the influence of sunlight is minimal, and the stars are easier to see. However, some observation spots may have time restrictions. For example, parks or campsites may be closed at night, and observatories or nature parks may have restricted hours.

To stargaze at your leisure, check the facility’s usage hours in advance.

Utilization Fees

The utilization fees for stargazing vary depending on the observation spot. Most parks or campsites are free, but observatories or nature parks may charge fees. The utilization fees at paid observation spots are roughly as follows:

  • Observatory: About 500 to 2,000 yen
  • Natural parks: About 300 to 1,000 yen
  • Stargazing reserved areas: About 1,000 to 5,000 yen

Some facilities may not accept QR payments or card payments. Be sure to have cash on hand.

List of Prohibited Actions

When stargazing, it is also important to follow the prohibited actions of the observation spot. By adhering to prohibitions, you can prevent causing inconvenience to others and protect the night sky.

Examples of prohibited actions include:

  • Use of Fire: The use of fire can cause fires or explosions and is prohibited. Do not bring in burners or campfires.
  • Littering: Littering not only ruins the scenery but also causes environmental pollution. Be sure to take your garbage home.
  • Bringing Pets: Bringing pets can cause inconvenience to other users and frighten wildlife. Ensure you do not bring pets to night stargazing.
    *Note: Some facilities may allow pets even at night.
  • Noise Generation: Noise disturbs other users and can prevent them from focusing on stargazing. Refrain from making noise.
  • Entering Prohibited Areas: Entering restricted areas is not only dangerous but can also hinder facility management and preservation. Do not enter any restricted areas.

By following these rules, you can enjoy and protect the rich nature of Hakuba Village.

5 Recommended Stargazing Spots in Hakuba Village

Kurobishi Plateau

If you want to enjoy stargazing in Hakuba Village, I first recommend Kurobishi Plateau.

Kurobishi Plateau is located at an altitude of 1,200 meters and offers a breathtaking view of the village, Mt. Hakuba, and Mt. Asama.

There are stargazing sessions held every night.

Stargazing sessions:

  • Held every Saturday and Sunday night.
  • For more information, check the website.

Stargazing events are held every Saturday and Sunday night. Here’s the information for 2023:

For more details, please check the HP.

★ Sky Astronomy Show (nsd-hakuba.jp) [Happo One Usagidaira Venue]
August 5th to 20th, September 9th, and 16th.
★ Schedule
19:00 – Reception and Gondola Ride (Upward)
※ Please complete the reception by 19:30 at the latest.
20:00 to 20:40 – Stargazing & Lecture (Outdoor)
20:40 to 21:00 – Free Stargazing
21:00 onwards – Gondola Ride (Downward)
※ For customers arriving by car, please use the A Parking Lot next to Happo One Gondola Lift Station.

Please check the location of A Parking Lot here.

★ Fee

  • Adults: 2,400 yen, Children: 1,600 yen
    ※ Included in the fee: round-trip gondola lift fare, guide fee
    ※ Junior high school students and above are charged adult fares.

Access to Kurobishi Plateau takes about 20 minutes by car from the center of Hakuba Village. Public transportation is also available.

At Kurobishi Plateau, you can enjoy stargazing all year round, with the snowy scenery and starry sky of winter being particularly noteworthy.

Happo-One Night Gondola

If you’re looking to enjoy a unique stargazing experience in Hakuba Village, I recommend the Goryu Night Gondola.

Located within the Hakuba Goryu Ski Resort, this gondola operates until nighttime, offering a breathtaking view of the stars from an altitude of 1,515 meters.

The countless stars scattered across the sky, shooting stars streaking by every few minutes, and the Milky Way spanning the night sky – these are the charms of the Goryu Night Gondola that you won’t find in urban areas.

The Goryu Night Gondola is perfect for relaxing after enjoying skiing or snowboarding. You can even admire the stars through the windows of the gondola, making it enjoyable even in winter without feeling the cold.

Moreover, from 20:00 to 21:00, the lights in the resthouse are turned off for a special time of guided stargazing commentary. You can learn about constellations and celestial bodies while enjoying the beautiful starry sky.

Please note that the information provided is based on 2023, so for more details, please check the website:
★ Night Gondola | Gondola & Lift | Hakuba Goryu Alpine Botanical Garden (hakubaescal.com)

Night Gondola Operation Schedule

  • Until sunset: Free exploration of the alpine botanical garden in the cool evening
  • Night workshop: “Leaf pounding and dyeing experience”

19:30: Observation with binoculars accompanied by staff (free observation)
19:50: Last ride on the upward line
19:50: Guidance by staff
20:10: Stargazing guidance by Mr. Nobuyuki Nozawa
After the guidance, free observation with binoculars
Exploration of the alpine botanical garden at night

21:00: Resumption of downhill operation of the Night Gondola
21:30: Last ride on the downward line

Hakuba Village, located in Nagano Prefecture, is a region blessed with abundant nature and scenic beauty.

Among the places where you can enjoy exquisite stargazing in Hakuba Village, the Goryu Night Gondola is beloved by many.

Escape from your busy daily life and spend a pleasant moment under the quiet night sky.

During your next trip to Hakuba Village, be sure to enjoy stargazing on the Goryu Night Gondola.

Hakuba Iwatake Night Garden

If you’re looking to enjoy a sophisticated stargazing experience in Hakuba Village, I highly recommend the Hakuba Iwatake Night Garden.

Hakuba Iwatake is known as one of Japan’s premier stargazing spots, where the summer nights are clear, allowing you to fully enjoy the starry sky.

The Hakuba Iwatake Night Garden is a limited-time summer event that opens the grassy square in front of the gondola summit station at night. Here’s what you can do at the Night Garden event:

★ Stroll through the illuminated fields of lilies and beech forests.

★ Observe the starry sky through dedicated telescopes.

★ Listen to explanations of the stars by astronomy guides.

★ Enjoy a slightly more adult stargazing experience in a romantic atmosphere while sipping on drinks like alcohol or tea.

It’s sure to be a memorable and special stargazing experience, adding a touch of luxury to your memories. Please note that the Hakuba Iwatake Night Garden is held at the “Hakuba Iwatake Mountain Resort” in Hakuba Village.

For more details, please visit the official website:
★ Hakuba Iwatake Mountain Resort |official web site HAKUBA IWATAKE MOUNTAIN RESORT

Ogawa Observatory

Ogawa Observatory is the core facility of Romantopia, a place where stars and greenery come together.

Here, in a dome measuring 7 meters in diameter and 9.3 meters in height, there’s a 60cm reflector telescope allowing observations of stars with magnitudes of up to 20 or higher. Please note that observation sessions (Guided Tours to the Starry Sky) are conducted exclusively for guests staying at the Romantopia Hotel. For day visitors, please inquire.

For inquiries, please call:

[Ogawa Observatory (Stargazing Guidance)]
Access, Operating Hours, and Fee Information – Jalan.net (jalan.net)

【小川天文台(天体観望案内)】アクセス・営業時間・料金情報 – じゃらんnet (jalan.net)

From Ogawa Observatory, you can enjoy panoramic views of the Northern Alps, Mt. Bishamondo, Mt. Yatsugatake, and other mountains.

Especially from October to early December, when the sky’s transparency is high, you can see stars such as the Milky Way and planets clearly. In the early morning, you might even encounter the red glow of the Northern Alps, known as Morgenrot, or a sea of clouds.

Adjacent to Ogawa Observatory, the Planetarium Hall projects stars using an optical projector, with programs running from Wednesday to Sunday. The retro atmosphere of the projector and the hall creates an irresistible space for star enthusiasts.

In Romantopia, there’s also the “Romantopia Hotel,” where you can stay. From all rooms, you can enjoy views of the Northern Alps and the starry sky.

The meals feature seasonal ingredients, with menus including matsutake mushroom dishes in October and November.

Located a bit away from Hakuba Village, Ogawa Observatory offers excellent facilities dedicated to stargazing.

If you love stars, be sure to visit at least once.

About 1 hour by car from Hakuba Village.

Hakuba Berg Haus

Allow me to introduce a hidden gem for stargazing in Hakuba Village, the Hakuba Berg Haus.

Situated at an altitude of 1,200 meters in the Happo area, Hakuba Berg Haus is a hotel surrounded by the majestic peaks of the Northern Alps.

Thanks to its location, you can enjoy an awe-inspiring view of the starry sky, something rarely seen in urban areas.

Hakuba Berg Haus hosts daily stargazing tours, and they also provide telescopes for observing the night sky, allowing for a more intimate and breathtaking experience.

Furthermore, the rooms, renovated in 2014, offer eight different variations, each providing the same basic amenities. You can enjoy the beautiful scenery of Happo while savoring creative cuisine at the “Togakushi Delicia.”

Hakuba Village not only boasts beautiful starry skies but also offers stunning views of the Northern Alps, including the Hakuba mountain range.

Hakuba Berg Haus is a hotel where you can fully immerse yourself in the charm of Hakuba Village throughout the day. Be sure to visit at least once.


In natural travel destinations like Hakuba Village, even the nights offer fantastic experiences.

Our blog also contains articles about “recommended gourmet food in Nagano Prefecture, sightseeing spots in Karuizawa, and ideal resort villa purchases.”


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