As promised, activities to do in Hoshinoya Karuizawa are abundant hence I decided to make a separate post dedicated to what you can do while you're staying in the resort. There are abundant activities that you can join and it is difficult to pick which one is my favorite. Basically 1 night wont be enough to have fun in this resort so I would truly recommend at least 2 nights so you can do a lot of things there!
TEA TIME ON THE PARK
Around 3pm there'll be snack and tea time at the outdoor park where you can enjoy some snacks including grilled mochi. Each table will be served your own charcoal grill so you can have the experience grilling it on your own. There are also some japanese teas or alcohol whichever you prefer and all are complimentary for hotel guests, refill is also welcomed!
ICE SKATING at kera lake
The ice skating comes with additional fee but an amusing experience that you should do considering outdoor skating is never possible in my country. It is my first time and though I was a little bit scared, definitely enjoyable! At night the skating area was turned into a bar where you can enjoy grilling marshmallow and make some smores, and if you want to elevate it further, order some recommended cocktails from the bartender as well!
soak in HOSHINO ONSEN - TOMBO NO YU
It is such a waste if you visit Hoshinoya Karuizawa without taking advantage of their onsen, especially since hot spring experience is a must to-do thing in Japan. Guests of Hoshinoya can enjoy Hoshino Onsen - Tombo no Yu free of charge, and there's car + chauffeur that will drop and pick you up there. From 8.30 am to 10.00 am, the onsen is reserved only for the hotel guests which means less people! The onsen is really relaxing and comes with indoor & outdoor onsen, and dipping in hot spring while the weather's freezing is totally a life changing experience
It is located a little bit far from the resort, around 25 mins away, and reservation is necessary. For me this is one of the best highlight of my stay because it's my first time riding a horse in Japan, a real japanese horse, not a pony one. My horse's name is Momotaro and he's very cute! The course is around 1 hour including basic skill and practice before going into the mountain and see the beautiful scenery. Before riding Momotaro, I was given time to get to know him and be his friend. The course comes with additional fee
COCKTAIL TIME IN THE LOUNGE
For 24 hours, you can enjoy buffet style lounge where you can just lazy around on comfortable couches with variant of snacks and beverages. Coffees and teas are provided but from afternoon to night, they offer alcoholic beverages such as wine and champagne that's changed daily. Truly a paradise for people whom fancy tasting alcohol since they change the selections so long-stay customers wont be bored
THERAPEUTIC BATh - ONSEN BODYWORK
Hoshinoya Karuizawa has 2 onsens, and one of it is this Therapeutic Onsen that's located inside the resort and exclusive to hotel guests. There's an area of Light and Dark where you can enjoy the warm water treatment to rejuvenate and refresh your body. The Dark Room is so special since it's a pitch-dark room where you can't see anything and only can hear the water flows. The staff told me that it's because guests can meditate well without any distraction. It is free of charge and can be enjoyed until 3 am. They only close it in the morning if they have to clean it or if there's activity for private Onsen Body Work (with additional fee). I had a chance to try the Onsen Body Work and it's basically light sport to relax the muscles with the help of onsen water. I was floating on the onsen (picture above) while the staff helped twisting my body to revitalize the muscles
relaxing spa & massage
A good resort wont be complete without a good massage and spa. Indulge in body or face treatment, but as for me I was opting for body AND face treatment. The therapist was so attentive and trained well as I had the result as soon as it's finished. I chose Relaxation Massage, due to my hectic schedule in Japan I was always in rush and couldn't relax. The staff helped me to relax through the session and that's the first time I truly realized the real Relaxation Massage. My heart beat and my breath becomes normal, and I was in awe. As for the face treatment, my friend said that my face instantly got brighter, plumper, and less red! There's also shiatsu treatment and other interesting options that you can pick according to your own needs and the price vary between each treatments
Though it is not a part of Hoshinoya Karuizawa, but they offer free car ride to visit nearby tourist spots such as Kogen Church and Stone Church which takes around 15 mins from the hotel. Surprisingly in Karuizawa, the tourist attractions are not shrines but churches. You can also attend mass if the schedule allows. As for the stone church, it's famous for wedding and you'll be amazed by the architecture. Even if you're not a Christian, it's an unique experience to visit both churches
So there are things to do at Hoshinoya Karuizawa. There are plenty activities to keep you busy but if you choose to just stay inside the resort and relax, the choice is yours! Let me know which activitiy you're interested the most! Don't forget to read as well Why You Have to Stay at Hoshinoya Karuizawa as well and talk to you on next post!