29.9.14

| Creatures | Bathing Apes


Travel questions often find their way to us via Twitter or our inbox these days. While we are not experts, It makes us happy to share our experiences and also give our honest opinion and advice to fellow adventure-seekers. 

Recently, we've had a few questions about  Jigokudani in Nagano which may be a bit difficult at the moment owing to volcanic eruption in the prefecture but nonetheless, it is certainly a place to note for future adventuring! 

Jigokudani is a place of steep cliffs, towering evergreens, steamy horizons and bubbling hot springs and though its name translates as 'hell valley', it is home to some charming monkeys. 







Japanese Macaques sort of dither about their lives. Chilling in the hot springs. Staring at their reflections in a nose to water fashion. Chewing on yummy things that they find. Grooming each other or just sat staring into space (considering world peace perhaps), they are infinitely fun to watch. Being in Jigokudani allows you the privilege of walking amongst the monkeys and being able to observe these fascinating and intelligent creatures up close. 

How to get there:
You can jump on a buss from either Yudanaka Station (will take 10-25 mins), or Shibu Onsen (will take 5-10 mins)or Nagano Station(will take 40 mins). Or, if you like walking, you can walk from Shibu Onsen, it will take about 45 - 60 mins if the weather is good.

Where to stay:
We drove to Yudanaka from Tokyo  and stayed in a traditional Japanese inn in Shibu Onsen. You can see our post on Shibu Onsen HERE.

18 comments:

  1. Did you have to shoot the photos from far away? Were you scared of them? I'd be scared of them!! Nevertheless, great photos. I love the one that's in the water and looking at something in its hands.

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  2. This place is just beautiful...I love it a lot. I could spend a lot of time here. Marvellous. Have a great week doll :) x

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  3. Yep, this place is in my bucket list. Thanks for sharing your personal snippets of the Macaques.

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  4. amazing! I love the picture of the one taking a bath. your posts of Japan adventures are my favorites x

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  5. This will sound ridiculous but I don't think that, in the presence of macaques, I would be able to stop pointing and giggling. I'm a true little girl at heart and they're just so fuzzy! Not very graceful perhaps, but that fourth photo especially elicited a laugh worthy of any kindergartener :)
    xox,
    Cee

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  6. No I completely understand Cee. Monkeys are the natural comedians of the wild I think :) I laughed too when I saw a bunch of monkeys, bums skywards staring intently at their reflections.

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  7. Cheers Sharon. I always have so many stories to tell about our adventures in Japan so there are lots more to come x

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  8. My dear!! How lovely to see you here again - you must go!! It's a lot of fun.

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  9. No babe....right up close and personal...well Hiro did anyway!

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  10. I remembering travelling here many years ago now, I hadn't prepared myself for how small it was having only seen photos online of fairly upclose shots of the monkeys (I too, 100% guilty of taking the same shots). I think it's important to have low expectations when traveling but In this case it's also impossible to resist cute monkeys bathing!

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  11. That is a good point Fiona. I must admit that I went with zero expectations and the main purpose of the trip in my mind was to relax in the nearby onsen. Thinking back now, the main viewing area was quite small. However the area in which the monkeys can freely roam was expansive and that really stuck in my memory.

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  12. this looks AMAZING! those photo's are so cute, they look so wise and calm. Sounds like they have life all sorted out :)
    xo

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  13. Chilling in the hot springs sounds like a pretty perfect daily activity, especially against that beautiful backdrop of 'towering evergreens and steamy horizons.' The monkeys have the right idea.

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  14. It's not easy to take things at a slower pace in Japan though right? Somehow there is SOOOO much to see and do and days get rammed with activities. I want to see more of Nagano - imagine these mountains in autumn...they must look amazing!!!!

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  15. I love the expressions on the monkeys' faces. We should all look so serene.

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  16. What an amazing place! The monkeys are always so cute and sometimes naughty, remembering my time back in the Elephant Island where there were many confident monkeys around trying to steal my bottle of water!

    Katrina Sophia

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