Hot springs are a popular attraction in japan, known for their relaxing and therapeutic properties. One such hot spring destination is Kamisuwa Onsen, located near the Yatsugatake Mountains on the edge of Lake Suwa. This Tokyo getaway is famous for its hot springs, stunning natural surroundings, and exciting events.
Kamisuwa Onsen is easily accessible from Tokyo’s Shinjuku Station via the JR Azusa on the Chuo Line, making it a convenient destination for both locals and tourists. The journey takes approximately two hours, allowing visitors to escape the bustling city and immerse themselves in the serene atmosphere of Kamisuwa Onsen.
Upon arriving at the station, visitors will immediately notice the presence of hot springs in the area. One of the defining features of a hot spring town is the foot bath, and Kamisuwa Onsen does not disappoint. The town is blessed with seven hot spring sources, which feed into the various hotels, Japanese-style inns, and public bathhouses in the area.
While many of these facilities are reserved for overnight guests, some do allow day trippers to access their baths as well. One of the must-visit hot springs in Kamisuwa Onsen is the Panorama Bath on the fourteenth floor of Hotel Beniya. This bath offers sweeping views across Lake Suwa to the hills beyond, providing a truly immersive and picturesque experience.
Another popular hot spring in the area is Katakurakan, located down the road along the lake. This bathhouse features a pool-sized common bath with a Romanesque atmosphere. The smooth stones lining the bottom of the tub provide a soothing massage for the feet, making it a perfect place to relax and unwind.
Aside from hot springs, Kamisuwa Onsen also offers a variety of other attractions. One of the highlights is Suwa Lakeside Park, which is just meters away from the onsen area. Guests staying at the inns often wander down to the park in the evenings, wearing cotton robes known as yukata. This park is an ideal spot to watch the sunset over the lake and enjoy the tranquility of nature.
For those interested in sake, Kamisuwa Onsen is home to the Nomiaruki Brewery Crawl, which is held twice a year in the spring and fall. This event allows visitors to sample sake from five local breweries, all within walking distance of each other. It’s advisable to book accommodation in advance for these weekends to fully enjoy the sake tasting experience.
Kamisuwa Onsen also serves as a great base for exploring the Suwa region. Visitors can visit the Suwa-taisha Shrine, which is one of Japan’s oldest and most important Shinto shrines. The shrine is known for its unique architecture and its connection to the Onbashira Festival, which takes place every six years.
Nature enthusiasts can also explore the Yatsugatake Mountains, which offer stunning hiking trails and breathtaking views. The Kirigamine Highland is another popular destination, known for its beautiful alpine meadows and panoramic vistas.
In conclusion, Kamisuwa Onsen is a charming and picturesque hot spring town near Tokyo. Its proximity to the Yatsugatake Mountains and Lake Suwa makes it an ideal destination for nature lovers and those seeking relaxation. With its wide range of hot springs, cultural events, and natural attractions, Kamisuwa Onsen offers a unique and memorable experience for visitors. Whether you’re soaking in the famous onsen baths, enjoying summer fireworks at Lakeside Park, or sampling Suwa’s fine sake, Kamisuwa Onsen is sure to leave a lasting impression.
Address And Maps Location:
1-1 Suwa, Nagano-ken