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Jigokudani - Snow monkey park

Updated: Jan 10

We took a trip to Nagano from Tokyo station by Shinkansen to see world famous snow monkeys in Jigokudani - Snow monkey park taking bath in hot springs and we absolutely loved it.

Snow monkey, monkeys, japan, nagano

First we made a stop at Zenkoji temple, one of the most important Buddhist temples in Japan, founded in 7th century. Temple stores first Buddhist statue, brought to Japan. The original statue is hidden, but her copy is shown to the public every six years for few weeks.

The reason why this Temple is my ultimate favourite from all the temples we have seen in Japan is that it is open and welcoming to all beings, including pets. So you will be able to see many dogs and cats coming to the temple.

After lunch we were headed to mountains of Nagano to Jigokudani monkey park to watch macaque monkeys come down to the valley to take a bath and play in hot springs. The park is located in their natural habitat and snow monkeys come down to it when they feel like it. They are not anyhow restricted, so it may happen they will not come down every day.

The hot springs were originally used by locals and macaques learned from people to bath in it. I was really surprised how polite and calm these monkeys were. They are very much used to being around people, but as everyone is very respectful to them and their surrounding, monkeys are minding their own business and just being cheeky and playful with each other. A big difference from monkeys that we encounter in Thailand, who then stole my water bottle.

selfie, monkey

There are currently around 160 monkeys living in the area and this particular hot spring is kept only for monkeys. People moved their hot springs down the river to let monkeys enjoy this one.

I was very much impressed by the park and would love to see more places like this, treating animals with all the respect they deserve, instead of restricting them anyhow for people's entertainment.

Have you been to any monkey park? How was it? Let me know in comments and check out the photo gallery below.

Thank you so much for unique experience to @getyourguide

You can book this via app or website. Here is the link:

|AD- This experience has been sponsored by Get your Guide

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