My husband, my family in law and myself went to Karuizawa for 3 days. We stayed in Hotel De Karuizawa Wald. We spent a lot of time shopping. We also visited Shiraito Falls, a weterfall nearby and easy to access by bus or by car.
Karuizawa is a small town in Nagano prefecture, Japan. It has a rich history and culture. In 1886 a Canadian missionary called Alexander Croft Shaw set the foundations of the town by building a wooden villa and starting a church. Other foreigners also populated the small village, hence many churches can be seen in the town. In 1889 Karuizawa was established as a village and later on grew into a small town which became a tourist attraction for many Japanese and foreign tourists. In the next few years railway developed and the area became more accessible.
Currently Karuizawa is visited by 7.8 million tourists per year. It is also a place visited by famous people like John Lenon and Yoko Ono, as well as Emperor Akihito and his wife Michiko. Many hotels, restaurants, craft shops,shopping malls and gift shops appeared throughout the years. In 1964 the Summer Olympics were held in Karuizawa, while in 1998 the Winter Olympics took place making Karuizawa the only town in the world to have held both the Summer and Winter Olympic events.
To access Karuizawa from Tokyo takes only 1 hour and 6 -30 min. The ticket costs around 6,000 Japanese yen or 45 pounds.