Traditional Hot Spring Town: Kinosaki Onsen

Stroll around the old streets of Kinosaki Onsen and enjoy the clatter of wooden geta sandals. Take a step back in time for a retro feel in one Japan's best preserved classic onsen towns.

Kinosaki Onsen – Traditonal Hot Spring Town

In northern Hyōgo Prefecture, Kinosaki is one of Japan’s best places to sample the classic onsen experience. A willow-lined canal runs through the town centre, and many of the houses, shops and restaurants retain their traditional charm. Add to this the delights of crab fresh from the Sea of Japan in winter, and you’ll understand why this is one of our favourite overnight trips from the cities of Kansai.

Lonely Planet Japan

Kinosaki Onsen has long been celebrated as one of Japan’s finest hot spring towns. The entire town is layed out as if it was a single ryokan (traditional Japanese inn) – the train station is the entrance, the narrow walker friendly roads the hallways, the inns are the guest rooms, the public hot springs the guest baths, and the various shops & restaurants for visitors to enjoy.

Visitors to Kinosaki Onsen wear comfortable yukata robes (light cotton kimono) and slip on a pair of wooden geta sandals as they stroll the atmospheric streets, exploring the shops, cafes, and restaurants and of course enjoying the 7 public hot springs (each with its own unique bath style).

Nishimuraya Honkan – classic Japanese-style ryokan

With 160 years of history, Nishimuraya Honkan is a classic Japanese-style inn that was praised by Lonely Planet as the “best onsen ryokan” in Japan.

Owned and operated by the Nishimuraya family for its entire history (now in its 7th generation), we pride ourselves in providing not only the most comfortable and authentic experience, but most importantly genuine hospitality from the heart.

Nishimuraya Honkan

It’s 34 guest rooms are all traditional style. Tatami-mat floors, sliding paper doors, private sitting areas with outside views are just a few of the luxuries guests will experience. Dinner & breakfast featuring local cuisine is served privately in the guest room or a private traditional dining room. Three hot spring baths are available for the comfort & convenience of guests.

The large Japanese-style garden at the center of the ryokan is one of the main features of Nishimuraya Honkan. Some guest rooms look out onto this garden. Designed by famed Japanese architect Masaya Hirata – the Hiratakan annex building features another garden as well as guest rooms designed in sukiya-style architecture.

Nishimuraya Honkan is a proud member of Relais & Châteaux.

Nishimuraya Hotel Shogetsutei – modern ryokan

Nishimuraya Hotel Shogetsutei Entrance

Nishimuraya Hotel Shogetsutei is a modern ryokan with both Japanese-style and Western-style guest rooms, private Japanese-style kaiseki dining or Western-style restaurant dining available. Views of a 30 acre mountain forest (some guest rooms), private open-air hot springs and aroma treatment massages are just some of the comforts to enjoy.