Madarao Mountain Resort is located on the north-eastern slopes of Mt Madarao in Iiyama city. It is still known by the original name Madarao Kogen to many, but has recently taken on the name Madarao Mountain Resort. While the resort is officially in Nagano Prefecture, some of the slopes are geographically within Myoko city – which is in Niigata Prefecture. On a clear day from the top there are spectacular views of Myoko to the north-west, Lake Nojiri to the west and Nozawa Onsen and Shiga Kogen to the east and south-east. Madarao Kogen has been operating since 1972.
In recent years Madarao has become increasingly popular with international visitors, probably in part due to their selection of ungroomed powder tree run courses. There are lots of activities going on including snow rafting, backcountry tours, snow shoe tours... and indoor climbing.
Madarao has also been busy adding new courses and tree runs in recent seasons and for the 2020-2021 season Madarao is adding another new course. 'Heidi' connects the Crystal Course off Lift Number 11 back to the Heidi Restaurant and the Number 2 quad lift.
The Madarao highland area is home to two ski and snowboard resorts – the other one being Tangram Ski Circus. They are connected, and a joint shared 'Mountain Pass' lift ticket is available.
Nagano Prefecture is located in the Chubu region of the main island of Honshu. Most of the Northern Alps, Central Alps and Southern Alps are located within Nagano (along with neighbouring prefectures). Nagano has the second highest number of ski and snowboard resorts in all of Japan and they are spread around the whole prefecture. Nagano city and many of the major ski resorts are located in the northern region.
Ski and snowboard lessons are available at Madarao. Please check the Lessons in English section for current listings on SnowJapan.
Ski and snowboard equipment rental is available. Ski and snowboard wear rental is also available.
The 'Kids Park' is located near the main hotel at the resort. Entrance is 500 yen. Sledge rental is available.
A child care facility is available within Madarao Kogen Hotel (half day charge of 3,000 yen, full day is 5,000 yen - reservations required).
The 'Free Ride Park' is by the Number 2 quad lift. There are also a number of popular ungroomed powder tree runs at Madarao. New one for 2019-2020 - 'SAWA II', a new 600m 'natural half pipe course' between SkyLove Course and the original SAWA tree run course.
Free entry for those with valid lift tickets.
Madarao Mountain Resort Season & Opening Times
Typical season is from Mid December until Early April
Weekends and holidays
Normally open from 8:30am until 5:00pm
Normally open from 8:30am until 5:00pm
'Nighta' (night skiing)
Weekends and holidays
Madarao is normally open from 8:30am until 5:00pm in the daytime.
It is usually open for night skiing on Saturdays between 26th December 2020 and 20th March 2021, and also over New Year (29th December through 3rd January) and 10th January 2021.
The Number 1 and Number 2 quad lifts normally operate during night skiing.
Madarao Mountain Resort Lift Ticket Charges
Elementary School age
High School age
55 years & over
1 Day (8:30am-5pm)
2 Days (8:30am-5pm)
3 Days (8:30am-5pm)
1 Lift Coupon
PM & Nighta (12pm-9pm)
Mountain Pass (1 Day)
Mountain Pass (Season)
2021-2022 Season lift tickets
Pre-school children can ride the Madarao lifts at no charge.
The 'Mountain Pass' ticket is valid at both Madarao and the connecting Tangram Ski Circus resort. The resorts are connected at the top. The other tickets are Madarao only.
On the day you can add 500 yen to 'upgrade' a 1 Day Madarao ticket to also include Tangram Ski Circus.
The 1, 2 and 3 day tickets do not include night skiing.
Children's Day is the third Sunday of the month when elementary school children can ride the lifts for free. Men's & Seniors Day is every Tuesday between 12th January and 16th March 2021. On those days, a one day lift ticket for those folk is 3,500 yen. Ladies Day is every Friday between 15th January and 19th March 2021. On those days, a one day lift ticket for those folk is 3,500 yen.
A spring ticket from 22nd March 2022 is available:
- Adults: 3,500 yen - Child: 1,500 yen - Seniors: 3,500 yen
Getting to Madarao Mountain Resort
By public transport
10.9km from Iiyama Station on the Hokuriku Shinkansen line
10.9km from Iiyama Station on the Iiyama Line
13.5km from Myoko Kogen Station on the Shinetsu Honsen Line
Madarao is about 11km from Iiyama Station on the Hokuriku Shinkansen line and the local Iiyama line.
There is a shuttle bus from Iiyama Station to the resort.
Other private company bus services operate between Madarao Kogen, Nozawa Onsen and Myoko Kogen.
10km from the Toyota Iiyama IC on the Joshinetsu Expressway
15.3km from the Myoko Kogen IC on the Joshinetsu Expressway
15.7km from the Shinano-machi IC on the Joshinetsu Expressway
Nearest national route: Route 117 (11.2km away)
Nearest prefecture road: Prefecture Road 97
Madarao Mountain Resort (Madarao Kogen) is located on the slopes of Mt Madarao looking over Iiyama city.
The winding Prefecture Road 97 runs past both the Madarao and Tangram Ski Circus resorts. That road - along with Prefecture Road 96 on the Myoko side - connects Iiyama city with Myoko city and the road is open throughout the winter months.
Approaching from Toyota Iiyama IC (Joshinetsu Expressway) The nearest expressway exit is the Toyota Iiyama IC on the Joshinetsu Expressway. From the Toyota Iiyama IC exit, head straight ahead on Prefecture Road 96 and after about 5km turn right to go up to Madarao Kogen, which is signposted.
Approaching from Myoko Kogen IC (Joshinetsu Expressway) Those travelling from the north should exit the Joshinetsu Expressway at Myoko Kogen IC and take Prefecture Road 96 and then Prefecture Road 97 up to the Madarao area.
Approaching from central Iiyama and Route 117 If arriving from the east (or indeed from the west) using Route 117, there are a number of Madarao Kogen signposts near the central area of Iiyama City. Madarao Kogen resort is about 11.5km from Route 117 and the base of Tangram Ski Circus is a further 5.5km along the same road.
Approaching from Shiozawa Ishiuchi IC (Kanetsu Expressway) From the Shiozawa Ishiuchi IC exit on the Kanetsu Expressway, turn right and continue for 1km until reaching the Route 17 traffic lights. Turn left onto Route 17 and after about 600m turn right again onto Route 353 to head towards Tsunan and Nozawa Onsen. After about 18km turn left onto Route 117. After around 43km on Route 117, there is a sign to turn right for Madarao Kogen. From there, follow the signs up the ski resort. The journey from Shiozawa Ishiuchi IC to Madarao Kogen is around 73km.
Updates to 2021-2022 season information on these individual ski areas listing pages are ongoing. All information will be manually checked and updated. Some official information from ski areas becomes available earlier than others, so not all our data can be updated simultaneously. The ongoing process will continue through December 2021.
MESSAGE A few thoughts and update on what we are up to at the moment.
NEWS & BLOGS Introducing our 'News & Blogs' section of the site
For more details and explanations about the information presented on this page,
please read this.
It is very important to us that the information presented on SnowJapan is correct and up-to-date. Checks and updates are made throughout the year. If you find information that you feel needs checking and updating, please let us know by contacting us. We appreciate your support.