Hakuba Cortina


Hakuba Cortina

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Hakuba Cortina

Hakuba Cortina3.5/510
Hakuba Cortina3.5 out of 5 based on 10 reviews
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Hakuba Cortina Ski Resort

Cortina is one of the best Hakuba ski areas for powder hounds. Firstly the off-piste policy at Hakuba Cortina is very relaxed, unlike at a few Hakuba resorts where they allocate a tiny area or you have to be very sneaky and risk losing your lift pass. The tree skiing at Hakuba Cortina is loads of fun, the terrain is steeper than at most of the other Hakuba ski resorts, and Cortina receives more snow. The only downside for powder hounds is that the “secret” of Cortina Japan is out and it’s not quite the powder skiing mecca it once was.

Powder hunters flock from Echoland and Happo to Cortina Hakuba for day trips, but a multi-day stay at the very striking Hotel Green Plaza Hakuba or other Cortina accommodation also has many benefits including the convenience of ski-in ski-out accommodation and a chance to get away from the somewhat westernised hub-bub of Hakuba.

Pros & Cons of Hakuba Cortina

  • Hakuba Cortina gets more snow than the more southerly Hakuba ski resorts.
  • The ski resort has impressive terrain for advanced riders, superb steep tree skiing, very good sidecountry, and a couple of fun high gradient groomers.
  • Cortina is interconnected and on the same lift pass as Hakuba Norikura, which is another of best Hakuba ski areas for powder hunters who love steep terrain.
  • The Hakuba Cortina hotel is conveniently ski in ski out and provides good value for money.
  • The onsen is fabulous, especially the semi-outdoor “peek-a-boo” area where you can peer across the ski resort.
  • Cortina is very quiet on non-powder days.
  • Hakuba Cortina is very popular on powder days and considering the small size of the terrain, the in-bounds powder can get ripped up quickly.
  • As is common with many Japanese ski resorts, there’s negligible nightlife and a curated resort feel if you stay at the hotel. Even though the hotel is large, there’s the potential you could get a bit of cabin fever if you stay there for many days.

Ski and Snowboard Terrain

The Cortina ski area is reasonably small with only 124 acres (50 hectares) of terrain (which is probably measured as the piste terrain), 503 metres of vertical, 6 lifts and 16 trails. Cortina is interlinked with the Hakuba Norikura Ski Resort (which is on the same lift ticket).

The Cortina terrain is mostly enclosed within one bowl. The grooming is exceptional on the highway-wide beginner run through the middle of the resort, the intermediate runs, and the advanced runs which are rather pitchy for a Japanese ski resort. A couple of “ultimate courses” are even steeper and one of the Hiedayama courses has an average pitch of 36 degrees and a maximum of 42.

The real treats for freeriders are in the off-piste zones (aka self-responsibility areas) and the tree skiing is an absolute ripper! There is a myriad of fantastic lines off ridges that drop into well spaced trees with moderate to steep gradients. The sidecountry provides even more delights for powder hounds, and the nearby backcountry is also great for stormy days (NB Hakuba backcountry ski/snowboard tours need to be booked well in advance).

Where is Cortina Japan?

Cortina (aka Koruchina Ski Resort) is the most northern of the Hakuba Valley ski resorts and is only about 14 km from the town of Hakuba and 16km from Happo One ski resort, a drive that takes 20 to 30 minutes.

There are buses connecting Hakuba Cortina with Happo (one of the main tourist hubs of Hakuba), and the Green Plaza Hotel also provides transfers from Happo, Nagano or the local train station.

See the getting to Hakuba Cortina page for more information.

Hakuba Cortina Hotel & Accommodation

There is no village at Cortina (as is common with a lot of Japan ski resorts), and very limited dining options in the evening. At the base of the Hakuba Cortina ski resort is the massive Hotel Green Plaza Hakuba. The hotel looks incredibly striking, particularly in the afternoon when the sun hits the bright red roof. The external architecture is sort of Tudor gothic style whilst the interior comes complete with gold adorned glass elevators and a mix of European and Japanese kitsch! The hotel has 257 Japanese-western combo rooms that have western beds and tatami (woven-straw) flooring for futons. Room types suit singles through to small families & groups.

Nearby are a couple of other lodgings that are also close to the main slopes of Cortina. There are also a few other options for accommodation in the Satomi village that sits alongside some of the Norikura slopes that are close to the #6 lift of Cortina. Or there is accommodation further along on the Wakaguri side (Chikuniotsu) of Norikura.

See the Hakuba Cortina accommodation listings for more information, availability, rates and a map.

Or some folks stay at more central Hakuba accommodation and commute to Cortina for day trips.


Most of the Cortina ski resort facilities are housed within the Green Plaza Hotel. These include a few restaurants, ski school, equipment rentals, lockers, a souvenir and convenience store, and an amazing onsen. The hotel also has massage services, a huge games arcade, and a karaoke bar if you love singing in front of your friends.

Cortina Japan is rather family friendly but more so for Japanese children. The local ski school only has lessons in Japanese, whilst English lessons provided by an international ski school are only in a private format which attracts a premium. There is no child care any longer, whilst adjacent to the hotel is a large kids’ area with play equipment, a jumping castle, tubing, tobogganing, and mini snowmobiles.
Tours That May Include Cortina

Safari (Road Trip) Tours

Myoko to Hakuba Backcountry
8 Nights | 9 Days
Ability: Advanced to Expert
This lift assisted backcountry tour takes in Myoko, Nozawa Onsen & Hakuba & is ideal for advanced to expert backcountry skiers and split boarders. These 3 areas are known for deep snow & epic tree skiing. Join as a solo, couple or small group; max 8 guests per tour.
Price p/p Price per person based on 2024 tours
USD 4,299
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See all Safari (Road Trip) tours that visit Hakuba Cortina here

Single-Base, Multi-Ski-Area Tours

Hakuba Backcountry
7 Nights | 8 Days | 6 Days Skiing/Riding
Ability: Advanced to Expert
Get away from the crowded Hakuba ski hills & explore the renowned backcountry. Lift assisted backcountry trip where the lifts will be utilised to gain some ascent, but expect to also ascend via ski touring/ splitboarding 1,500 to 2,500 metres per day.
Price p/p Price is per person based on twin or triple-share rooms
Base/invoice currency is CAD
Displayed price may vary slightly to actual due to exchange rate fluctuations
USD 4,202
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Hakuba Backcountry Adventure
8 Nights | 9 Days
Ability: Advanced to Expert
This is the ultimate lift assisted backcountry tour in Hakuba for advanced to expert backcountry skiers and split boarders. Hakuba Valley will be your base to some of the best ski and snowboard terrain in Japan. Join as a solo, couple or small group; max 6 guests per tour & guaranteed departures.
Price p/p Based on 2024 tours
USD 4,399
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See all Single-Base, Multi-Ski-Area tours that visit Hakuba Cortina here

Backcountry Skiing Tours

Hakuba Backcountry Day Tours
Private Groups Only - Max 5 In Group
Ability: Strong Intermediate to Expert
Reach out above and beyond the boundaries of the Hakuba ski resorts & be guided to the sheer expanse of backcountry with touring gear. Daily rate is 99,000 yen for 1 person up to 5 people (ie solo can't join a mixed group). Day guiding or multi-day guiding.
Price p/p Price is based on a private group of 5 for 2023-24 season
base/invoice currency is JPY (Japanese Yen)
displayed price may vary due to exchange rate fluctuations.
USD 131
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See all Backcountry Skiing tours that visit Hakuba Cortina here