Do you know this place ? Or Have you ever heard of Jigokudani Monkey Park? It is the only place in the world where monkeys bath in hot spring.
History of Jigokundai Monkey Park
The Jigokudani Monkey Park is located at an altitude of 850 meters in the Valley of Yokoyu River at Nagano .This place is also called as Hell’s valley because of the extremely vertical cliffs and the steam coming off the springs all over the place. It is covered almost one third of the year during snow. Even in that sort of harsh environment has been proven as aheaven for monkeys to live in. The troops of wild Japanese macaque also popularly known as snow monkeys inhabit here naturally through the ages.The story of the park goes back to 1963, when a young female monkey climbed into the hot spring to collect soybeans that were floating on the surface of the water. This behavior of the young female monkey was copied by others in the troop, and soon it became familiar for the monkeys to draw back to the hot pools when the harsh winter arrived. Then the establishment of Jigokudani Monkey Park was done at 1964, which followed up many tourist and now it has been a worldwide popular location to see the bathing monkeys in a hot spring.
Things to Do
You can ski all day long and take the bus to the park. It takes 1.4 mile walk from the bus stop to the snow monkeys. It is stunning as you make your way through the woods. It is quite exposed and during winter it is snowing mostly. The falling snow makes it more spectacular with the snow settling on the monkeys fur. It is a steady walk up to where the monkeys are, but the paths can be a bit slippery too so we must were non-slippery boots. We can also hire boots at the entrance if needed.There is a brilliant café where the food is delicious and it is located near to the doorway. Make sure you have roughly 3 hours to be able to fully enjoy. It is a place where nature is at it's best with many wild animals , and they should be treated with respect.
Get the Shinkansen ( bullet train) to Nagano. When you reach at Nagano station, get the direct bus from the station up to the park. Getting to the park is a 1.6km walk in the forest, and the road is either icy or snowy. The monkey park is quite big and has actually two sections. You have to pay ¥500 to enter the first section, there is a lovely stream and rocks and the monkeys just lie and entertain themselves. If you walk straight there is the hot pool where they bath. Every 2 hours the monkeys get feed and then there is an unbelievable activities. It is really a wonderful place.Hours
: Varies depending on the season, check the website or call !Access
: 6845 Yamanouchi-machi Shimotakai-gun Nagano Japan 381-0401Telephone
: http://en.jigokudani-yaenkoen.co.jp/contact-Writer Nikhil