Jigokudani Monkey Park
A famous hot spring known for wild monkeys that come to soak in its waters.
Monkeys, Hot Springs
Jigokudani Monkey Park sits in an extremely cold and rugged valley of the Yokoyu River that runs from the Shiga Kogen Highlands. At 850-meter elevation, the area spends almost a third of each year covered in snow.
The park is home to many steep, craggy cliffs and the wafting steam off the hot springs, earning the name “Jigokudani” (lit. Valley of Hell).
Many wild Japanese monkeys live in this area and can be seen warming up from the winter chill as they dip in special hot springs designated for them in the park.
The sight of monkeys soaking in the snowy hot springs has brought upon the nickname “snow monkeys”, a particularly special sight in Japan that’s beloved around the world.
The charming, almost human-like air of the monkeys relaxing happily is especially cute. In the spring there are even baby monkeys to see. There are no zoo-like cages or fences, so visitors are able to see the monkeys up close.
During daytime hours, the monkeys come for the food brought by the park wardens, but otherwise disappear back into the depths of the mountains. Tourists are not allowed to feed the monkeys themselves as it may cause the monkeys to attack.
Enjoy close up views of the picture-perfect snow monkeys as they kick back in the hot springs.
There may be days when the monkeys aren’t soaking due to warmer temperatures.
Remember to bring easy-to-walk shoes to reach this deep mountain destination.
Tourists are not allowed to feed or touch the monkeys.
There is a hot spring area near by so you can relax as well after a long trek.
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- Name in Japanese
- Postal Code
- 6845 Hirao, Yamanouchi-machi, Shimotakai-gun, Nagano
Summer Season (April-October) 8:30am – 5:00pm
Winter Season (November – March) 9:00am – 4:00pm
※Open hours may be subject to change. Please check official site for details.
- Park Holidays
- None. Open All Year.
- Admission Fare
- Adults (ages 18+) 800 yen, Children (elementary to high-school aged students) 400 yen
(1) Walk about 35 min. after taking a 41 min. ride to “Snow Monkey Park” on the express bus to Shiga Kogen from Nagano Station on the Hokuriku Shinkansen.
(2) Walk about 35 min. after taking the 15 min. bus to “Snow Monkey Park” from Yudanaka Station on the Nagano Electric Railway Nagano Line.
- Official Website
- Official Website (English)