Family-Friendly Guide To Niseko And Hirafu With Kids * Ski Season 2023 / 2024

Your Ski Season Guide To Niseko 2023 / 2024


Let it snow! Niseko’s famous ski destination is ready for skiers and snowboarders big and small with new hotel and chalet openings, must-visit restaurants, child care options, and plenty of things to do other than skiing.   Whether you have little ones just starting their skiing journey or teenagers seeking adrenaline-pumping challenges, Niseko offers an all-encompassing experience for families with kids of all ages. Hit the slopes, take a ski lesson, go snow tubing, explore the town’s finest restos with the kids, and uncover secret recommendations with the Little Steps Guide to Family-Friendly Niseko.

Need a private car for family transport to/from the airport – click here!

Ski Resort Opening Dates 2023 2024 Season Dates Description
Niseko Annupuri International Ski Area December 2, 2023 – May 6, 2024 Niseko Annupuri International Ski Area welcomes families to a winter wonderland from December 2, 2023, to May 6, 2024. With breathtaking panoramic views and a variety of ski runs suitable for all skill levels, it provides the perfect destination for families to enjoy memorable skiing adventures together.
Niseko Village Ski Resort December 2, 2023 – April 7, 2024 Embrace the magic of winter at Niseko Village Ski Resort, open from December 2, 2023, to April 7, 2024, offering an exceptional experience for families. With impeccably groomed slopes catering to all levels, thrilling off-piste terrain, and a multitude of winter activities, it ensures a delightful skiing getaway for the whole family.
Niseko Tokyu Grand HIRAFU December 2, 2023 – May 6, 2024 From December 2, 2023, to May 6, 2024, Niseko Tokyu Grand HIRAFU promises an unforgettable winter adventure for families. Renowned for its extensive terrain, diverse ski runs, and lively après-ski scene, it offers excitement for all ages. Families can bond on the slopes and create lasting memories in this winter paradise.
Niseko Hanazono Resort December 2, 2023 – April 7, 2024 Get ready for pure winter bliss at Niseko Hanazono Resort, operating from December 2, 2023, to April 7, 2024, where families can experience unforgettable skiing moments. Renowned for its deep powder snow and pristine slopes, Hanazono provides meticulously maintained facilities, snow parks, and thrilling backcountry areas for families to enjoy.

Want more – check out these handy guides about Niseko.

  • Niseko-With-Kids-Family-Friendly-Accomodations

    PLACES TO STAY IN NISEKO: Hotels + Chalets + Ski-In/Ski-Out + Affordable And Cheap Options Too

    Best Places To Stay With Kids In Niseko 2023 / 2024

    Always popular, Niseko is a magical place for snow-loving families with babies, toddlers, kids, and teens! For those looking for family-friendly accommodation in Niseko, there are 4 popular resort areas to choose from: Annapuri, Niseko Village, Grand Hirafu, and Hanazono. Little Steps has rounded up a list of our favorite luxury chalets, affordable and cheap options, ski-in/ski-out favorites, big group options, and a few secret stays as well.

    • Full Guide To Top Family Friendly Accommodation In NisekoClick here!

    Exclusive Discounted Family Deals On Hotels For 2023 / 2024


    Annupuri Family-Friendly Luxury Hotels And Chalets:

    Niseko Village Family-Friendly Hotels And Chalets:

    Hanazono Family-Friendly Luxury Hotels And Chalets:

    Resutsu Hotels and Resorts For Families:

    Grand Hirafu Family-Friendly Luxury Hotels And Chalets:



    Annupuri Family-Friendly Luxury Boutique Hotels And Chalets:

    Niseko Village Family-Friendly Luxury Boutique Hotels And Chalets:

    Hanazono Family-Friendly Luxury Boutique Hotels And Chalets:

    Grand Hirafu Family-Friendly Luxury Boutique Hotels And Chalets:



    Annupuri Family-Friendly Affordable Boutique Hotels And Chalets:

    Niseko Village

    Grand Hirafu

  • Top-Niseko-Restaurants-For-Families-Popular

    PLACES TO EAT IN NISEKO: Sushi + Yakatori + Traditional Delights In Niseko, Japan

    Family-Friendly Restaurants In Niseko + Date Night + Restaurants For Groups In Niseko

    From sushi to ramen, Niseko is also famous for its food! Enjoy food from Michelin-starred favorites to the best casual Hirafu restaurants to enjoy as a family - it's all here.

    One of the most famous in the area is Kamimura - it's a Michelin-starred French restaurant in Hirafu. It’s open all year round and you’ve never truly dined in Niseko unless you’ve eaten here. However, they don’t allow children below 7 inside. But don’t fret! You can drop off your kids at the Niseko Kids Club.

    There are lots of child-friendly restaurants that also accommodate big groups, especially if you are traveling with your extended family or friends. A favorite is Jojo’s, which is located on the second floor of Niseko's climbing and adventure center. It has a dedicated playground for kids and serves delicious Western food. If you’d like to try Swiss raclette and fondue, stop by the Alpinist, which is located in Odin Place. However, they are only open during the winter season and by reservation. If you and your family are a fan of buffet lunches and dinners, Prativo is the place for you.

    New And Favorite Restaurants For 2023 / 2024 Ski Season:

    Niseko Family Favorites:  There’s always something new in Niseko! Always evolving, foodies can enjoy the latest and greatest on the food scene.  Below are the always popular Niseko restaurants that kids love too!

    • An Dining, Ki Niseko, Yamada, Kutchan-cho, Abuta-gun, Hokkaido 044-0081 Japan,   www.kiniseko.com/dining *Thai food
    • Akaru, 1F Yamashizen West, 185-6 Aza Yamada, Kutchan-cho, Abuta-gun Hokkaido 044-0081 Japan,  www.nisekoakaru.wixsite.com/akaru
    • Bang Bang, Yamada, Kutchan-chō, Abuta-gun, Hokkaidō 044-0081 Japan, www.nisekobangbang.com *yakitori
    • Bi-On Niseko, 83-120 Yamada, Kutchan-chō, Abuta-gun, Hokkaidō 044-0081 Japan, www.bion2202.com/niseko *Italian styled barbecue with local ingredients
    • Kumo Restaurant, Skye Niseko 204-7 Aza Yamada, Kutchan-cho, Abuta-gun, Hokkaido 044-0081 Japan, www.kumoniseko.com *great views, great Japanese food
    • Markie Curry, Kita 3 Jonishi, Kutchan-chō, Abuta-gun, Hokkaidō 044-0053 Japan, www.markiecurrynisekoenglish.com *home of Hokkaido's famous soup curry dish
    • Niseko Pizza, Minami 6 Johigashi, Kutchan, Abuta District, Hokkaido 044-0016 Japan, www.nisekopizza.com
    • Niseko Ramen Kazahana, 170-50 Yamada, Kutchan, Abuta District, Hokkaido 044-0081, Japan, *lowkey and authentic ramen that locals love
    • Kougetsu,170-41 Yamada, Kutchan-chō, Abuta-gun, Hokkaidō 044-0081 Japan,    www.kougetsuniseko.com
    • Steak Rosso Rosso, 167-61 Yamada, Kutchan, Abuta-gun, Hokkaido 044-0081 Japan,  www.rossorosso.la.coocan.jp/index.html *the go-to place for steak
    • Sushi Hanayoshi, 65 Fujimi, Niseko-chō, Abuta-gun, Hokkaidō 048-1502 Japan,  www.niseko-hanayoshi.com *exceptional sushi experience
    • A-Bu-Cha 2 (PERMANENTLY CLOSED) ,  191-29 Yamada, Kutchan, Abuta District, Hokkaido 044-0081 Japan, www.abucha.jp

    A few tips for eating in Niseko:

      • Most restaurants are open during the wintertime only. Always check for year-round availability if you are not visiting in the winter months. 
      • Be sure to make reservations in advance, especially if with a large group. Many require reservations 90 days in advance during popular times.
      • Make sure and check to see if the restaurant takes credit cards - many do not.
      • After making a reservation, make sure and check the criteria for confirmation.  Many restaurants require you to confirm 24 hours before even after you make the reservation.
  • Niseko-With-Kids-Ski-Equipment-Gear


    With two locations in Niseko, Rhythm Niseko is a family-friendly hub of rentals and gear that will sort you and the kids out...pronto! Rent skis, snowboards, helmets, snow boots, and more. Rhythm Niseko offers pick-up and rental exchange plus tuning and repair services. Hire gear in advance via their online booking hereNiseko Base is another popular ski rental company offering skis/boards from top brands such as K2, Head, Ride, Line, Armada, and Burton.  They have child rentals with helmets included.  In Hanazono, Niseko Sports is popular with kids and adults. Need lift tickets - shop at Niseko Lift Tickets - You can check prices here.

    Ski Rental For Adults + Kids:

    Kids + Adults Jackets, Gloves, Goggles, Gear In Niseko:

    In addition to skis, Rhythm also has an excellent selection of ski-shopping extras for kids.  Other options include:

  • Ski-Lessons-For-Kids-Niseko

    SKI SCHOOLS IN NISEKO: Toddlers, Kids, Private Classes, Adults In Niseko + Backcountry Ski Requests

    If you're seeking convenience, book the whole family in for lessons at Niseko Base Snowsports with classes for kids 3 and up.  Another option is NISS which is a purpose-built setup in Hanazono and is fab for getting the kids to a 'quieter' part of the mountain away from the masses in Hirafu. This option is ideal for little ones and beginners as well.  GoSnow is an international ski school in Hirafu offering magic carpets for early learners, priority lift lines at Grand Hirafu, and lessons for kids, teens, and privates too.

    For private ski lessons in Niseko - click here!

  • Best-Apres-Ski-Niseko

    APRES SKI IN NISEKO: Where To Drink And Eat After You Ski In Niseko

    Apres-ski is a must!  Top spots for sips post-ski include the popular Masu at Odin Place - right in Hirafu. Craving a craft beer? The Tap Room is where you can try local brews and it's in the same building as Masu! Other popular Apres Ski spots include The Vale Bar & Grill by The Ace Family Ski Lift.  Others in Hirafu that people love are The Barn.

    Hirafu Apres Ski Favorites:

  • Niseko-With-Kids-Things-To-Do-Other0Than-Skiing

    THINGS TO DO IN NISEKO OTHER THAN SKIING? There Are So Many Fun Activities For Kids!

    There are loads of things to do in Niseko other than skiing. Kids will be happy to know that there is a huge indoor play space, Galaxy Of Kids in Hanazono, with 10 climbing walls, a floating adventure trail, and so much more! For amazing winter kids camps, Edventure is super popular with families. They also offer movie nights and Igloo making classes for kids. Niseko offers even more unique classes including ice cream-making workshops at Milk Kobo (Takahashi Farm) and other cultural experiences around town such as Taiko drumming lessons, tea ceremony demonstrations, and sushi-making lessons, which are usually advertised closer to the date. For a fun soba noodle-making class - book it up here. Hanazono Park offers tons of fun, such as sledding, snow tubing, zip-lining, and winter rafting. For dog sledding, horseback riding, snow rafting (get pulled behind a snowmobile), and snowshoe adventures, you can try Rusutsu and Niseko Village!  There are plenty of places to arrange snowmobile tours including Explore Niseko and Hanazono.

    For indoor fun, you can take a day pass at the popular indoor pool at Alpen Hotel Niseko (then finish at the onsen upstairs).  Jo Jo's is also popular with families as it offers a three-story indoor playground and a climbing wall within the NAC (Niseko Adventure Centre) building.

    Niseko Gourmet is a fun place to do fam-friendly cooking classes.  If you want to go on a tour and make sure somebody takes photographs for you to remember, contact Niseko Photography. One for pops?  Go whiskey tasting at Nikka Whiskey!

    If you feel like wandering inside a museum or an exhibit, there are two places that you can go to - the Kutchan Museum of Natural Sciences and the Ogawara Museum.

    More Fun Activities Besides Skiing For Families In Niseko:

    Want to go on a day trip close to Niseko?  

    • We recommend Otaru, Sapporo, Lake Toya, Noboribetsu, Furano, and Biei!
  • Family-Friendly-Onsens-Niseko

    FAMILY-FRIENDLY ONSENS: Mixed, Female-Only, And Kid-Friendly Onsens In Niseko!

    Most onsens, natural thermal hot springs, in Niseko allow kids to join if a parent is present. For a family-friendly experience, book your own private onsen at the Kanronomori Hotel. They offer two private onsen rooms with large cedar baths and a relaxation area that can be hired out for a period of 50 minutes. Hilton Niseko Village has a large indoor bath and a wide outdoor bath next to a pond with stunning views of Mt. Yotei. You can enjoy the view of "Ezo Fuji" from both the indoor and outdoor baths.  Yugokorotei is another favorite - gorgeous indoor and outing onsen options with top views.  The Niseko Grand Hotel offers the largest onsen in the area.

  • Niseko-Babysitter-Childcare

    BABY SITTERS + CHILDCARE IN NISEKO: Babies And Toddler Care In Niseko For Babies And Toddlers

    Most chalets and hotels offer babysitting services on request.  For those seeking more of a drop-off option, there are options that are great for families.  Located in Aya Niseko, Niseko Kid's Club offers certified, English-speaking caregivers that will entertain your children aged 1-6 with fun-filled activities both inside and outside.  They offer full and half-day options and baby rental equipment too. Niseko Babysitters is an agency that provides fun active babysitting.  All babysitters are first aid certified, bonded insured, and have many years of childcare experience even for small babies. Want a more cultural experience?  Win D'Ol is a unique option with full and half-day Japanese cultural programs for kids, sports nannies to hang on the slope with them, and evening care options.

  • Niseko-With-Kids-Guide-To-Skiing


    Having supplies within your reach is helpful, especially when you cannot wait for room service or if you crave something at an ungodly hour. There are several general merchandise stores and groceries that you can check out during your downtime.


    Where to go with kids in Niseko?

    • Which ski resorts in Niseko are perfect for families? Niseko boasts an array of exceptional ski resorts that cater to families' needs, ensuring a memorable experience for everyone. From the panoramic views of Niseko Annupuri International Ski Area to the magical winter wonderland of Niseko Village Ski Resort, the diverse terrain of Niseko Tokyu Grand HIRAFU, and the pristine slopes of Niseko Hanazono Resort, each resort offers unique charms and family-friendly amenities.

    What is the best time to visit Niseko, Japan?

    • Niseko's ski season typically runs from December to April, offering an extended window for families to plan their visit. However, the months of December and January are particularly enchanting, with fresh powdery snow blanketing the slopes, creating a picturesque winter wonderland for the whole family to enjoy.

    What activities are available for families off the slopes?

    • Niseko is not just about skiing and snowboarding; it offers an array of activities to keep the entire family entertained. From snowshoeing through serene forests and exhilarating snow tubing adventures to exploring charming local villages and relaxing in hot springs, Niseko provides a perfect blend of winter activities for all ages and interests.

    Are there ski lessons and programs for children of different ages and skill levels?

    • Absolutely! Niseko boasts exceptional ski schools and programs designed specifically for children of various ages and skill levels. Whether your little ones are taking their first steps on skis or your teenagers are eager to enhance their technique, experienced instructors are available to guide and support them throughout their skiing journey.

    Common Questions And Tips For Prepping For Trip To Niseko: 

    • WHERE TO BUY LIFT TICKETS: Niseko Lift Tickets - You can check prices here.
    • RESTAURANT BOOKING: Booking ahead for stays, meals, ski lessons, and rentals is the most important tip (especially during busy times such as Christmas and Chinese New Year!). For those already booked into a property, you can request the concierge to arrange the meal bookings.
    • WHAT TO PACK?: Be sure to remember to pack your own fever medication, and plenty of moisturizers as the air is very dry, and ask the hotel/property manager/concierge to make sure the kids' room has a humidifier – especially useful for toddlers and younger. It's cold - bundle up!
    • WINE DELIVERY: Need to buy wine in Niseko - head to Niseko Wine Delivery or Maoi Distillery.


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