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Resort Highlight: Tomamu

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Introducing Tomamu Ski Resort

Tomamu ski resort is an increasingly popular ski destination located in the centre of Hokkaido, a swift 90 minute shuttle bus ride from Sapporo City or 2 hours from New Chitose Airport (CTS) takes you directly to the ski resort.

 

Image credits: Hoshino Resorts Tomamu

 

Tomamu is famed for Hokkaido’s world famous powder snow, convenient ski-in ski-out resort design, and an impressive selection of mouth-watering dining options that would satisfy all.This ski town pampers you with all you need for an all-inclusive ski holiday, whether travelling as a couple, with friends or family.

 

Image credits: Hoshino Resorts Tomamu

 

Tomamu’s ski terrain is well suited for all skill levels with 30% beginner, 40% intermediate and 30% advanced terrain. Not only that, Tomamu’s back country gives access to Hokkaido’s glorious untouched powder for the adventurous skiiers and snowboarders. If you are a beginner, Tomamu’s slopes with its wide selection of gradual and progressive runs make it ideal to begin your snowboarding journey. Being a smaller and fairly quieter resort compared to Niseko, Tomamu gives you ample space to practice your skiing and snowboarding skills without the fear of bumping into fellow beginners

 

For the intermediate to advanced skiiers and snowboarders, there is limited challenging terrain in Tomamu compared to nearby resorts such as Niseko, Kiroro and Rusutsu in Hokkaido. However, if you know where to look, you will find your fair share of steep terrain and powder runs around the resort. For the dynamic riders, Tomamu has a slope-style park with decent sized boxes, rails and kickers to take your freestyle game up a notch.

 

Tomamu’s combination of 5 lifts and 1 gondola allows you to explore a total of 29 trails as well as access to the peak with just one gondola ride. This means that you’ll be able to treat yourself to spectacular mountain views even if you are just starting out.

Take a tour through Tomamu’s amazing terrain and resort in the video below.

 

Video credits: Hoshino Resorts Tomamu

 

Off slope activities and attractions:

What makes Tomamu most interesting is the variety of off slopes activities and attractions available for guests of all ages. Activities range from snowmobiling, ice sledding, snow trails and even ice fishing. The most spectacular attraction would have to be the ice village that opens in the middle of December each year.

 

 

The ice village consists of an ice hotel, chapel, bar, café and shops. And as the name suggests, everything is made purely from ice. It is a true showcase of art and a must-see when you are in Tomamu. The village is even more spectacular when the sun sets with an array of colourful lights all around. To top it off, there is an outdoor ice skating rink in the village for all to try for a truly magical winter wonderland.

 

Image credits: Hoshino Resorts Tomamu

 

Dining options:

Apart from its apres ski activities, Tomamu has over 20 iconic restaurants, bars and cafes serving up that much needed post-ski grub and Japanese cuisine. Expect to be spoilt for choice with scrumptious cuisine ranging for Hokkaido’s famous snow crab buffets to sizzling Ghengis Khan meat grills, soul-warming Hokkaido soup curry, the famous Afuri ramen, and other popular Japanese eats.

 

Image credits: Hoshino Resorts Tomamu

 

You will find most of the restaurants along Hotalu Street – Tomamu’s new ski-in ski-out food street. Hotalu Street is located at walking distance from both the ski lifts and accommodation. Apart from restaurants, you’ll find convenience stores and winter wear shops around, all within walking distance of each other. Convenience and enjoyment at its maximum!

 

Imange credits: G’day Japan

 

When should you travel to Tomamu?

The ski resort opens at the start of December and operates all the way till April. However, to experience the famous Hokkaido quality powder snow, be sure to travel to Tomamu in the months of January and February during the peak of winter. This is when snowfall is statistically at its peak and the most consistent. When it does snow, you’ll be treated with the light fluffy powder-like snow skiers and snowboarders all over the world flock to Hokkaido to experience. Snow quality in the region is one of the best in the world and it is an amazing experience by itself just admiring the snow covered town and to be in the middle of this spectacular all-white scenery.

 

Getting to Tomamu

Unlike it’s popular neighbour, Niseko, which you can only access via New Chitose Airport, you can get to Tomamu from a list of airports in Hokkaido which include New Chitose Airport (CTS), Asahikawa Airport and Obihirio Airport. Getting to Tomamu is a breeze and you can make your way to the resort by car, airport shuttle buses or the JR train. The most convenient & fuss-free way to get to Tomamu would be to take an airport shuttle from either Sapporo City or New Chitose Airport (CTS), just 2 hours away from Tomamu.

 

Image credits: Hoshino Resorts Tomamu

 

By shuttle bus:

There are 6 shuttle buses running daily to and from New Chitose Airport (CTS) in Sapporo. It’s a 2 hour journey each way, and you can plan your arrival and departure timings using this shuttle schedule as a guide:

Image credits: Hokkaido Access Network

 

By JR Train:

There are 11 express trains daily straight to Tomamu station, going from Sapporo City, New Chitose Airport, Obihiro Airport and Minami Chitose train station. If you prefer travelling to Tomamu by train, take note that bulky items such as snowboard and ski bags are going to be difficult to transport around, especially with the changing of trains and small cabin spaces! If you’re doing a trip around Hokkaido for some sight-seeing before heading to Tomamu, we would advice you to leave your snowboard & ski bags at the airport’s overnight baggage storage area or, get your bags delivered to the resort beforehand.

 

Our thoughts on Tomamu

Tomamu ski resort is a perfect destination for families and groups of friends looking for their first taste of skiing and snowboarding. This is why we have chosen Tomamu to be our home resort for our beginner snowboard camps in February 2020. The ski resort’s large selection of beginner friendly terrain and minimal crowds is key for an enjoyable time on the slopes to progress quickly in the sport. Also, the options of mid mountain café stops and food options just by the base of the mountains make it even more enjoyable when you crave a hot cup of chocolate or need a short break to rest your legs. To top it off, the ski in ski out accommodation will make your first experience on the mountains much more pleasant. For your first few trips to the mountains, moving around in the winter cold can get pretty harsh if you are not used to the cold, so having everything just minutes away from the slopes greatly provides you with the much needed convenience.

 

 

The Ride Side’s Tomamu Beginner Snowboard Camp

 

Who is this camp for?

This beginner snowboard camp has been specifically designed for first timers and beginners who are eager to learn to snowboard quickly and progress in the company of a fun like-minded group. In this 4 day 3 night camp, you will learn all the basics of snowboarding and be equipped with the necessary technical skills and knowledge to safely navigate down beginner slopes around the mountain. You will learn how to read trail maps, weather reports, avoid mountain obstacles and improve your turns. By the end of the course, you will have the confidence and skills to explore other ski resorts on your own. This camp will give you a taste of snowboarding without having to commit too much time or money into the sport before deciding if it’s for you. Use this camp as the ideal stepping stone to figure out if snowboarding is your thing. Safety and proper guidance when starting out cannot be stressed more and through this camp, we aim to provide an enjoyable and effective snowboarding learning journey in a safe environment.

 

 

What to expect on the camp, what will you learn?

In this camp, you can expect to learn all the basics of snowboarding. From learning how to simply turn and stop on your snowboard to getting on ski lifts, we got you covered.And while it will take more than 4 days to be competent enough to snowboard seamlessly down the runs, we aim to provide you with the necessary knowledge and guidance required to kick-start your snowboarding journey and be better prepared and confident when you head off on your next trip. On this introductory camp, there will be a total of 1 gear fitting, 1 theory session and 2 and a half days of snowboard lessons on the mountain.

 

Learn with a group of beginners with dedicated instructors

A key aspect of this camp is that you will be learning with a group of up to 12 others who will be learning at the same level as you. Often, beginners feel intimidated when starting out, especially if you learn alone or start out with friends at a much higher level. This camp will be different. Learn, progress and encourage each other as you work towards the same goal. Not only will you be in good company, we make it a point that your instructors who lead the camp will take care of the group and personally carry out the daily lessons, from start to finish. Learning from the same instructor throughout the course is very important to allow your instructor to monitor and note your individual progress and offer effective advice or create specific drills for progression. Our instructors will carefully monitor how each individual progresses to ensure effective learning and make sure no one gets left behind.

 

 

Our recommendations for a beginner

For a beginner, any duration between 3 to 7 days on the slopes is ideal for your first trip, depending on how much time you have and your overall physical fitness. As a first-timer, it usually takes 3 days to learn all the techniques of snowboarding to get the hang of it, and then you will use the next few days to practice and refine your technique on the snow. If you have limited time, a minimum of 3 days is recommended. Any duration for more than 7 days might be too long for a first trip as your muscles will start to fatigue, especially since you will be exerting a lot when learning. Muscle aches throughout the week are common as you will be using many muscle groups that you do not engage on a regular basis. To minimize the aches and maximize your performance while learning, working out consistently before the trip is highly recommended. Strong legs and a core will be most beneficial when learning.

 

Interested to learn snowboarding with us?

Check out our Beginner Snowboard Camps in Tomamu HERE: https://therideside.com/trips/tomamu-beginner-snowboard-camp