Sunday, 6 January 2013

Kusatsu Onsen

Kusatsu Onsen by Jun Kumagai (src:

Kusatsu Onsen by PunkRockPaco (src:

There are many great and unique locations on this planet, Kusatsu Onsen or Kusatsu, being one of them. Onsen is a Japanese word for hot spring. Kusatsu Onsen is said to be one of the best places in the world for hot springs, and these onsens are also said to have very positive effects on anyone's health. After breathing sulphate and chilling out in some of the many hot springs I sure feel quite satisfied.


Next to the onsens you have the Kusatsu Kokusai ski resort as well. In other words, at this place you can ski all day and chill out in an outdoor hot spring in the evening, before you have dinner at one of the locations many great restaurants. In summer Kusatsu Onsen is well known for hiking, golf and tennis, and personally I reckon it would be a fantastic spot for a training camp for running. The city is located about 1200 meters over sea level, and if you climb the surrounding mountains you'll get to over 2000 meters altitude.

At the hotel's own onsen I also so my first saw my first yakuza, and he was as taken straight out of Outrage, bloody scary looking guy.

Nothing fancy here, just a couple of shots from the chair lift. However it should give you an impression of the ski resort. The last clip is from the top elevator, which is above 2000m altitude. The conditions there were great. The only problem is that you are not allowed to go off piste at this ski resort. The music being played on the video is currently the most popular song in JapanSeifuku no Mannequin (制服のマネキン) by Nogizaka46.

Kusatsu Kokusai ski resort in Japan from Frode Klevstul on Vimeo.

Also, the elevators at Kusatsu can give you headache if you're as stupid as the guy here:


Mr Me conveniently located at Kusatsu.

Mr Morinaga.

Androids in love? The film poster for my next film!

Kusatsu by night.

Cold air + warm water = nice effect.

At certain spots the water is warm enough for boiling eggs (no kidding).

Nice location at the city centre for dipping your feet.

Japanese snow cat at Kusatsu.

Beware of the Japanese bear.

Now Resort Hotel. Close to the ski resort, access to own onsens, pool, tennis court and more. Also including a great bus service all day long.

A nice place to stay when in Kusatsu.

News from Norway.

New Year's Ekiden.

Did I mention that Ekidens are HUGE over here? The New Year one being the biggest of them all.

Do the twist, Mr Me as Mr Chubby Checker.

Next stop, Japanese powder. The hotel's own ski bus (walking would take around 10 min, too much).

Kusatsu Kokusai.

1/3 13 - a big day. For the first time since 2009 I was back skiing, and it was amazingly fun. 3400 Yen for a half day pass.

The ski resort.

A lot of peeps in the lower area. But heaps less as it got steeper. Perfect for me.

The rental equipment was not that bad. 4000 Yen for skiing equipment including wear, 3400 for half day pass (12:00 - 1700).

Advanced snow men over here.

Thomas the snow train?

Happy as a little kid. I might have to get myself some skiing equipment once again.

Chair lift.


The restaurant at the top. 


Almost at the top. Great conditions. Magical atmosphere.

The final lift to get to the top of the skiing resort. I believe the sign warns about more difficult conditions.

Too bad off piste skiing is off limits here.

A Japanese guy that loved his Norwegian skiing jacket.

Dinner time, down at a local Japanese restaurant in Kusatsu.

It all looks good to me.

Meat fried in ginger sauce. Itadakimas, oshi oshi!

The master of the restaurant to the left, and a budo master to the right.

Breakfast at the train station, on our way back to the city.

Very traditional Japanese rice breakfast. Oshi!

Taking the train back to Tokyo. Trains over here are "sugoi"!

facts about kusatsu onsen
kusatsu on google maps
kusatsu onsen ski resort weather forcast
more pictures on google


  1. Du mangler hjelm Frode :) super kule bilder :)) like

    1. Fikk ikke leid hjelm, men jeg hadde i det minste fin Kari-lue ((:


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