Who’s coming for the Rugby World Cup?!
We are absolutely thrilled that Japan is hosting the Rugby World Cup 2019, making it the first Asian country to welcome the Webb Ellis Cup. To all travellers coming to cheer their team – welcome to Japan!
From the 20th of September to the 2nd of November this year, 12 stadiums across Japan will host a total of 48 games.
The Saitama Kumagaya Rugby grounds, the Yokohama International Stadium and of course the Tokyo Stadium are located at less than 2 hours away by train from Nozawa. It’s an ideal place to experience the “real” Japan, between games.
How to visit Nozawa Onsen?
The Shinkansen (bullet train) is a modern miracle, a joy for train buffs, and the best way to commute in Japan. Fast and comfortable, most of our guests use it to visit us! See below the average time by train from the closest Rugby Stadium to Nozawa (note that you’ll have to transfer in Tokyo):
- Saitama to Iiyama 90 minutes
- Tokyo Ueno to Iiyama 110 minutes
- Yokohama to Iiyama 150 minutes
From Iiyama station to Nozawa Onsen, you can take a 20 minutes Bus or Taxi just in front of the train station.
Nozawa Onsen and its incredible Japanese countryside
Nozawa Onsen offers plenty of things to do between matches! All the matches are, naturally, in major urban centres, but you’ve not experienced Japan if you haven’t explored the countryside. An authentic rural mountain Japanese village, Nozawa Onsen is probably the place to explore during the Rugby World Cup 2019.
With over 300 years experience of welcoming weary guests, Nozawa Onsen offers… onsen! There are any number of public or private natural hot springs. You can go for a walk on the many forest trails or race downhill as fast as you can on a mountain bike. Visit the Jugokudani Monkey Park and let the famous monkeys watch you watching them, or take part in a Japanese cooking lesson. This is an agricultural region so farm-to-table isn’t a speciality: it’s the norm! You eat well here, and with great local sake, wineries, and craft beer, you drink well too. You can practice Yoga, Meditation and even ski on an all-season slope under Japan’s steepest zipline. The activities are many and will satisfy everyone.
Where should you eat during your stay in Nozawa Onsen?
The wide range of food offered by the restaurants in the village will pleasantly surprise you. With farms, rice paddies, orchards, and well-stocked rivers and lakes, this region offers its chefs an abundance of easy wins.
Nozawa Onsen is also famous in Japan for many food specialities. Soba noodles are one of them. You can eat these brown buckwheat noodles hot or cold and, compared with the soba you’ll eat in the cities, they are much more gluten-light! Other specialities include the tasty Nozawana pickles (every family’s granny has a slightly different recipe), the huge honey apples which will be ripening just in time for the RWC, peaches and, grapes growing in the area (and grapes means… wineries!).
For your dinners, the choice is yours! From the traditional Izakaya (pubs, but with excellent local tasting dishes) to fine-dining restaurants, not to mention ramen, barbecues, okonomiyaki (think savoury pancakes) or sushi restaurants (we’re only 50km from the coast), there are all kinds of cuisine available in our village.
As a bonus, the bars will screen the rugby games you need to keep up with!