Gift for Frozen Village 2016



Echigo-Tsumari Winter 2016


Every winter the region of Echigo-Tsumari gets up to three meters of snow. That’s just shy of ten feet. What’s more, it sticks around for nearly half of the year. You might expect that life in this rural area would grind to a virtual halt until the spring. But instead of eagerly waiting for the first signs of a thaw, the residents of this area team up with artists and volunteers to create a series of events that bring light and smiles to this frozen village. You can enjoy fireworks, art exhibitions, and meals that showcase local cuisine and unique “snow country” hospitality. What else would you expect from the area that is home to the Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennale, the world’s largest outdoor art festival? 

Echigo-Tsumari Winter 2016

Different events take place throughout the winter months. You can go to individual events on your own, but this will require you to arrange for your own transportation once you arrive in the area. If you’d rather leave the driving to someone more familiar with the area, there are one and two-day tour options. To give you an idea of what you can expect, here are some of the highlights from the two-day tour, "Echigo-Tsumari winter delicacies and snow fireworks." This tour will start on March 5th 2016.

Yukimi Gozen

Echigo Tsumari Winter Event yukimi gozen

Your first stop on the tour after boarding a bus from Echigo-Yuzawa Station at 12:00pm will be a special lunch called Yukimi Gozen. You’ll go to a private residence and enjoy local winter specialties prepared by residents of the area. The food will be served in a style called gozen. Each dish will be served in its own individual bowl, and each guest will have his or her own low-legged table. It's a rare opportunity to try authentic home-cooking as well as interact with local residents. 

Corridor of Light

Echigo Tsumari Winter Event Corridor of Light

There’s something about the combination of winter and light that's kind of magical. After spending your afternoon enjoying various artworks in the region, you’ll wander through a world of light and snow in The Corridor of Light by artist Kyota Takahashi. Make your way through a corridor made of light and snow into a room that's almost like a colorful starry sky.  


This area is also open independently of tours. 
Dates: Friday, March 4 ~ Sunday, March 13
Hours: 5pm ~ 8:30pm 
Adults: \500 
Children \250 

Snow Fireworks

Snow Fireworks Echigo Tsumari Winter Event

You’ve probably seen your fair share of fireworks before, but I’m willing to bet you’ve never seen anything quite like these Snow Fireworks. At your feet, you can see Gift for Frozen Village 2016, another work by Kyota Takahashi. In this piece, 20,000 “seeds of light” glow from where they are buried in the snow. Then the time comes, fireworks up to 600 meters in diameter burst into bloom against the pitch black winter sky. Pure magic. There’s also a special light and snow performance that uses a snow-blowing machine. 


You can purchase tickets for the Snow Fireworks independently. 
Date & Time:
Saturday, March 5 at 7:30pm~ 
※Fireworks will only last for a few minutes
Nakago Green Park
2924-28 Ueno Ko, Tokamachi-shi, Niigata Prefecture

Entry fee if not going as part of a tour 
【Echigo-Tsumari Winter 2016 Special ticket】

Adult: \2,500 (advance purchase \2,300)
Children (15 and under): \1,500 (advance purchase \1,300)
【Snow Fireworks 2016 ticket】
Adult: \1,000
Children (15 and under): \500
Shuttle bus service to Nakago Green Park will be available. Please use public transport as there will be no access for cars.
Shuttle bus stops: West exit of Tokamachi station, Echigo-Tsumari Satoyama Museum of Contemporary Art, KINARE, Matsudai station, Kawanishi branch office, Senju Community Center and other stops.

The tour finishes at 12:50pm on March 6th at Tokamachi Station. This is a great idea for a short trip from Tokyo if you have a JR Rail Pass as it only takes about an hour and a half via the MAX Toki Shinkansen from Tokyo Station to Echigo-Yuzawa Station. You can find the complete schedule as well as how to register for the tour and tour price here

※Please note that times and itinerary details may change. Please check the Echigo Tsumari Art Field website to for the most up-to-date information. 

Tour Information 

Tour Date 
Saturday, March 5 ~ Sunday, March 6, 2016
Adults: \25,000
Children: \21,000
※ Price includes transportation fees, the cost of lunch, the price of a special ticket for all activities, and insurance. 
Registration deadline
Monday, February 22, 2016
Pickup Location 
Echigo-Yuzawa Station, Tokamachi Station 
Ending Location
Tokamachi Station 
Maximum Number of Participants
Echigo-Tsumari Art Field Homepage

Please check the Echigo Tsumari Art Field website next year for information about next year's winter events. 

Get Involved!

Seeds of Light Echigo Tsumari Winter Event

Although this isn't part of the tour, it's a great opportunity for those of you who don't mind the cold and want to participate in the making of this event. You can join Kyota Takahashi’s team and plant those 20,000 “seeds of light” (i.e. LED lights) in the snow. You can learn more about volunteering here

Echigo Tsumari Winter 2016 season lasts from Saturday, January 30 until March 21, 2016.

Have you ever been to the Echigo Tsumari region? Let us know in the comments! 

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