Neighbourhood Guide: All about Nagano

May 30, 2024

Hakuba Summer Image Unsplash

Nagano is a prefecture in Japan that is experiencing significant growth in international investment when compared to other regions of the country. In this neighborhood guide, we will explore the reasons why Nagano is an exceptional place to visit and reside.

Ideal Climate

Nagano is a wonderful location that can be enjoyed throughout the year. It is a prefecture that is landlocked and situated at a higher elevation compared to the majority of the major cities in Japan. The climate in Nagano is pleasant and cooler, with temperatures typically 3 to 5 degrees Celsius lower than Tokyo, which frequently entices people to relocate there.

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Similar to other regions in Japan, Nagano is renowned for its breathtaking sakura blossoms, or cherry blossoms, which bloom a bit later thanks to the altitude, usually in April. Furthermore, the moderate humidity, cooler temperatures, and stunning natural beauty of the summer and autumn seasons make them particularly enjoyable.

Winter Haven

Most of the prefecture is surrounded by three Japanese mountain ranges and is mostly volcanic, making this neighbourhood home to famous ski resorts and hot springs. One of the most well-known and international-friendly year-round resorts is Hakuba. It offers a combination of 10 distinct ski resorts on one pass, premium lodging, natural hot-spring onsens, and breathtaking mountain vistas of natural landscapes.

Hakuba backcountry

Host of the 1998 Winter Olympic Games

With the region’s world-class ski resorts, tourists have long visited Nagano to ski, snowboard, and hike its natural landscapes due to its convenient access from the capital city. Nagano gained an international profile after hosting the 1998 Winter Olympic Games.

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Despite being the fourth largest prefecture, Nagano has a low population density, making it one of the country’s most livable due to its abundant natural landscapes and reachable towns and villages. Moreover, the neighbourhood’s low population provides a healthy work-life balance and a relaxed pace of lifestyle away from the pressure of busy cities and congested towns.

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Lower Cost of Living

Setting up a business, buying a residence, or investment properties in Nagano are more affordable than in most urban regions of Japan. With a lower cost of living and efficient schools, many individuals are attracted to move and invest in Nagano.

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Fresh Food

Nagano's favourable climate has made it an ideal region for cultivating a variety of high-quality fruits and vegetables, including apples and grapes, which are offered at more competitive prices compared to Tokyo. However, the cold weather in Nagano has posed challenges for rice cultivation. As an alternative, the region has excelled in producing premium soba (buckwheat noodles) and miso (fermented soybean paste), which have become integral components of the local food culture.

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Additionally, Nagano produces various grains that are used to create the renowned oyaki, a dough filled with wild plants, sweet bean paste, and nozawana-zuke (pickled mustard leaves).

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