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Kinosaki Onsen is a charming hot spring town located three hours from Kyoto and Osaka in northern Hyogo Prefecture, overlooking the Sea of Japan. This atmospheric 1,300-year-old Japanese town boasts seven public hot spring bathhouses within walking distance of each other, all free of charge for visitors staying at one of the town’s numerous traditional ryokans (inns). The spa town is a year-round delight, whether draped in cherry blossoms, autumn leaves or fresh snow. The town’s center is bisected by the willow-lined Otani River. Visitors tend to wander around clad in a yukata, a light cotton kimono, and geta, elevated wooden sandals, and take dips in the public bath’s steamy therapeutic waters. The other popular activities are riding the ropeway up the mountain to Onsenji Temple and a scenic lookout point, visiting the Stork Sanctuary and shopping. Grab a drink at a local bar and relish delectable fare prepared using fresh Matsuba crabs and the world-renowned Kobe beef.

Highlights

  • Spa Town
  • Therapeutic Hot Springs
  • Onsenji Temple

Places to Stay

Onishiya Suishoen
Onishiya Suishoen

Style: Boutique

Onishiya Suishoen is a modern ryokan located in the town of Kinosaki Onsen. Built in the Japanese sukiya-style of architecture, the hotel’s lobby overlooks a courtyard with a stream flowing through its manicured garden.

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Sennen No Yu Koman
Sennen No Yu Koman

Style: Boutique

Sennen No Yu Koman is a traditional Japanese inn located in the resort town of Kinosaki Onsen in the Hyogo Prefecture. This 1300-year-old classic hotel occupies a traditional wooden building and is the second oldest hotel in the world.

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