In my previous blog, I wrote an article to recommend using a rental car for traveling areas close to airports and major cities, such as onsen near Tokyo.
By using a rental car, you can travel more freely at the destination suburbs.
Gradually more and more foreign customers also visit our Shima Onsen Kashiwaya Ryokan by rental cars.
For such customers, watch road closures information during winter.
Our Shima Onsen is located in Gunma, which is next to Shibu-Yudanaka Onsen in Nagano famous with snow monkeys, Tochigi with Nikko, Niigata with Naeba Ski Resort and so on.
The boundaries between those prefectures often pass through mountain roads.
In addition, some of main roads are closed during winter due to snow.
Also on the other day, a customer tried to visit us by a rental car from Nagano side.
But he had to take significant detour as the planned road was closed during winter.
Since this kind of information is hardly transmitted to customers overseas, it will be a sudden problem when they try to visit us with GPS and maps.
Although you can obtain information in Japanese through Japan Road Traffic Information Center, it seems that they do not transmit the information in English.
The winter road closures, which seem to be related to customers to Shima Onsen, are the following two sectors.
Route 292, From mid-November to late April
It is a road, which passes from Shibu-Yudanaka Onsen in Nagano famous with snow monkeys to Kusatsu Onsen in Gunma, through Shiga Kogen.
Route 120, From late December to late April
It is a road, which passes from Nikko in Tochigi with Nikko to Katashina in Gunma, through Konsei Toge.
If you’re planning to drive to snowy places during winter, obtain winter road closure information in advance and act with spare time, such as by inquiring to hotels and ryokan you are planning to stay.
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