is a town
located in Kitasaku District
As of January 1 2008, the town has an estimated population of 17,833 and has a total area of .
Karuizawa is known throughout Japan as a popular tourist spot. Many couples and families from Tokyo will travel to Karuizawa to get away from the city especially in summer. There is a Shinkansen station as well as a large outlet store shopping mall. It is also known for its historic shopping street known as "Ginza dōri" or "Kyū-dō" (Ginza Street, or the Old Road).
Karuizawa hosted equestrian events in the 1964 Summer Olympics. The town also hosted curling in the 1998 Winter Olympics. To date, it is the only city in the world having hosted both Summer and Winter Olympic events.
- Highest elevation: (Top of Mount Asama)
- Lowest elevation:
- 1872 - The village Usuitoge from Saku District, Nagano merged into the village of Karuizawa.
- 1873 - The town of Usuitoge broke off from the village of Karuizawa.
- August 2, 1876 - The villages of Kutsukake, Shiozawanitta, Karijuku, Narusawanitta, and Yui merged to form the village of Nagakura. The village of Hatsuji in Saku District absorbed the village of Matorikaya.
- January 14, 1879 - Kitasaku District Government enforced, and the town of Usuitoge, and the villages of Karuizawa, Nagakura, Oiwake belongs to Kitasaku District.
- April 1, 1889 - The city, town, and village status enforced. The town of Usuitoge, and the villages of Karuizawa, and the areas of the former villages of Kutsukake, Shiozawanitta, and Karijuku from the village of Nagakura merged to form the village of Higashinagakura in Kitasaku District, and the areas of the former villages of Narusawanitta and Yui in the village of Nagakura, and the villages of Hatsuji and Oiwake merged to form the village of Nishinagakura in Kitasaku District.
- August 1, 1923 - The village of Higashinagakura gained town status to become the town of Karuizawa. (※The pre-town areas before gaining the town status is known as Kyu-Karuizawa.)
- May 8, 1942 - The village of Nishinagakura merged into the town.
- February 1, 1957 - The town absorbed Serizawa area from the former village of Goga, which was absorbed by the town of Miyoda.
- April 1, 1959 - Kajikazawa area from the former village of Oiwake broke off and went to the town of Miyoda.
- Karuizawa High School (長野県軽井沢高等学校)
For those seeking a "white wedding
" Karuizawa is a popular Japanese wedding destination, with St. Paul's Church (San Paulo Kyoukai) off Ginza-dori a picturesque spot. Other historical places in Karuizawa include the 102 year old Karuizawa Union Church (founded in 1906), Mikasa Hotel
, and Mampei Hotel
- The current rulers, Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko met playing tennis in Karuizawa in 1957. Michiko Shoda was the first commoner to be married into the Japanese imperial family, although as the daughter of a prominent flour milling family she was among the elite.
- John Lennon and Yoko Ono spent several summers in Karuizawa in the 1970s as Yoko Ono's family owned a bessou (summer house) there.