Hakuba and Nagano City
"Beautiful Hakuba Village in Winter"
The reason we chose this place was because we would like to travel to a place very different from the main big cities like Tokyo. We wanted to feel and see something, together with our son. Also, I had Japan Rail pass which I need to fully utilise it. Hakuba answered it all my needs. There was a JR train from Shinjuku to Hakuba. When we arrived in Nov, the village was peaceful and quiet and the bonus was we saw the whole village was covered with snow. Very spectacular and breathtaking views.
"Happo-one Ski resort"
Snowy mountain views are superb even if you are not skiing. We enjoyed playing snow here. The owner of the pension we stayed drove us here. He even gave us 20 yen to call him using public phone so that he could pick us up. We took a cable car up. We had lunch (stewed beef and curry rice) up here which was affordable.
I chose this city because of its historical temple founded in 7th century and believed to have the first Buddhist image arrived in Japan. We stayed in a beautiful traditional ryokan. It's quite a modern city though. We returned Tokyo via JR Shinkansen, duration was about 2.5hrs.