Top 5 Ryokan With Private & Public Onsen

Woman bathing at Japanese onsen
One of our readers asked in our recent article Top 5 Ryokan in Japan, what are some top ryokan that are located in beautiful surroundings and have their own private onsen for guests. That’s a great question!

Now if you’re not familiar with what exactly and onsen is, let me help you with that first…

What is an onsen?

Outdoor Japanese Onsen

An onsen is basically the Japanese version of the hot-spring. It’s typically used to describe the bathing facilities or inns around a natural hot spring.

Since Japan is a very volcanic country, there are plenty of natural hot springs or onsen to choose from (more than 19,000 at last count!). In fact, onsen visiting is a cherished past time for a lot of Japanese.

Traditionally, you will find these bathing locations outdoors. But in some cases you may come across indoor facilities with the hot-spring water being pumped into private or public baths.

So if you’re looking to bundle your ryokan experience with a private onsen experience as well, here’s a list of of top spots to try out.


Yuka-no-Sato Tsuruga

Yuka-sno-Sato Tsuruga Ryokan

While you don’t have to go as far north as Hokkaido to find a great onsen, the Akan National Park comes pretty close to onsen perfection. Guests to Yuka-no-Sato Tsuruga will find themselves whisked away to old Japan in the beautifully designed village that makes this ryokan one of the best in Japan.

Enjoy public (separated into men and women) or private bathing while you soak up the amazing pine and lakeside scenery.


Kannawaen

Kannawaen Ryokan and Onsen

Japan’s southernmost island Kyushu hosts some unbelievable onsen experiences. This 70 year old ryokan is nestled away in lush hillside surroundings. Relax in one of their open air baths while enjoying the rocky and tree covered surroundings.


Yamatoya Besso

Yamatoya Besso onsen and ryokan

Another island of Japan and another top onsen experience. While you won’t get as much authentic outdoor landscapes with Yamatoya Besso, you will get beautiful Japanese architecture that dates back 140 years. While the lavish meals and exquisite garden may not convince you to break the bank on this very expensive ryokan, those that do decide to stay a night will never forget the experience.


Taketoritei Maruyama

Taketoritei Maruyama onsen and ryokan

Voted in the top 100 onsen in Japan, Taketoritei Maruyama hosts both public and private baths. Included in most of the meals will be world-famous Kobe beef which probably the highest quality beef you will ever taste.


Kyushu Hotel

Kyushu Hotel ryokan and onsen

While the name alone doesn’t sound all that inspiring, the Kyushu is a wonderful ryokan. Located near the Hell hot-spring, it houses communal and private onsen. After you relax in the hot-spring you can enjoy some jazz in their Karaoke Bar.


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Photo Credits – Splash photo by: rich115, Onsen photo by: qousqous

6 Responses to “Top 5 Ryokan With Private & Public Onsen”

  1. Winter in Japan | traveltocitiesinjapan.com  on April 2nd, 2012

    […] For a complete list of the best hot springs check out our articles on the Top 5 Ryokan With Private & Public Onsen. […]

  2. Julie Shum  on April 24th, 2012

    Please recommend good ryokans in other areas. we will be in Kyushu for 7 nights from May 7 and want an unique experience.

    THank you

  3. mitchell  on October 3rd, 2012

    the best one i have ever stayed at is Hakone-Ginyu, and i have stayed in all these but Kannawaen

  4. sk holenstein  on August 27th, 2013

    Could you kindly recommend the best ryokan with private onsen & great food in Hokkaido?
    thanks

  5. Travis  on August 27th, 2013

    Hello SK :) Here’s some options from Japanese Guest House – http://www.japaneseguesthouses.com/ryokans-destinations/?region=Hokkaido I’m not sure about the private onsen part, but I’m sure there’s something available.

  6. Ruth  on September 4th, 2013

    I found your blog really helpful in learning more about onsen. I am a keen onsen enthusiast! If you enjoyed reading this you may also enjoy reading http://www.deepjapan.org/c/visit/recommends/398


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