One of my top five things I wanted to do while living in Japan was to see the snow monkeys in Nagano.   I think I saw them in National Geographic when I was little, and I have been wanting to see them ever since.  Every time I thought about Japan, I pictured those snow monkeys.  So, as soon as winter arrived in Japan, we made the trek to Nagano to see these monkeys enjoying the hot springs.  Nagano is about a 5 to 6 hour drive from where we live, but it was definitely worth the trip!