Deciding where to stay during your trip to Japan is an important step of your travel preparations, which can sometimes also be very time-consuming. There are so many awesome hotels to choose from in Japan, ranging from cool and unique hotels in Tokyo to capsule hotels and hotels catering specifically to families. But there is one type of hotel that you simply have to experience during your stay in Japan to not miss out on a special adventure: an upscale ryokan. Here is a list of some of our favorite luxury ryokan in Japan!
Stefanie Akkerman moved from the Netherlands to Japan in 2013 with her Japanese husband and son. She jumped into the niche of Dutch tour guiding in Tokyo and Kamakura in 2015 and occasionally writes articles about all the great sights and activities Japan has to offer. She loves (Japanese) food, and to work that all off she goes diving, snorkeling, cycling, or hiking.
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Kawaguchiko is famous for offering some of the best vantage points for admiring majestic Mt. Fuji. If you would like to have plenty of time to do so, staying at Fufu Kawaguchiko is going to be a real treat for you. This modern luxury ryokan features spacious, well-designed rooms with private bathrooms as well as a shared sauna and hot spring bath. There is also a gorgeous garden terrace from where you can take in the splendid Mt. Fuji views on clear days.
Location: Kawaguchiko, Yamanashi Prefecture
Fujikawaguchiko Onsen Konanso
Also located in Kawaguchiko is Fujikawaguchiko Onsen Konanso, a more traditional ryokan with tatami-floored rooms and futon beds for a truly Japanese experience. The ryokan features incredible views of Lake Kawaguchi and Mt. Fuji, and guests can enjoy outdoor hot spring baths, a foot bath, karaoke rooms, and a game center. Some rooms come equipped with an ensuite private open-air hot spring bath for the ultimate relaxing experience.
Location: Kawaguchiko, Yamanashi Prefecture
Hokkaido is known for its incredible natural beauty, the Sapporo Snow Festival, and its many opportunities to engage in winter sports. Enjoy the wonders of Hokkaido and relax in a beautiful, romantic ryokan featuring a balcony in each room and an incredible onsen area with a view of the great outdoors – we can hardly imagine anything better than this! Another selling point of this traditional Japanese accommodation is the delectable food which is beautifully presented. We recommend doing a private tour of Hokkaido’s largest city upon arrival in Sapporo to make sure your visit to Japan’s northernmost island is kicked off in the best possible way!
Location: Kutchan, Hokkaido Prefecture
Hakone is a great place to go if you want to experience the healing powers of hot spring water coming directly from an active volcano. And what better way to do so than at a luxury ryokan? Gora Kadan is conveniently located near Gora Station, and this upscale hotel features not only unobscured views of the mountains, but also supremely comfortable bedding, private onsen baths in the rooms or on the balcony, and exquisite traditional Japanese cuisine. The outdoor spaces of this ryokan are meticulously designed and kept in perfect condition, making sure the surroundings, too, are extremely pleasant to the eyes.
Location: Hakone, Kanagawa Prefecture
Now connected with Tokyo by shinkansen, Kanazawa is a relatively peaceful city with plenty of fascinating culture and nature to discover. One of the best ways to do so is on a private tour, where an experienced local guide will show you the best of this beautiful historical town. If you want to savor some of the city’s best delicacies, a lunch-time food tour is a surefire way to make sure you miss nothing of Kanazawa’s most famous seafood dishes. After discovering this cultural gem, staying in Kagaya, a ryokan with a long history of top-notch hospitality and a wonderful onsen with sea views, is the perfect way to immerse yourself even further in Japanese culture. The rooms have a nostalgic charm and comfortable tatami flooring, and the traditional art adorning the walls will only add to the historic Japanese atmosphere. Of course, dining here is an unmissable part of the experience as they serve delicious and beautifully presented seasonal dishes.
Location: Nanao, Ishikawa Prefecture
Kurokawa Onsen Gosyo Gekkoujyu
Kyushu is located in southern Japan and is a volcanically active island with an abundance of high-quality natural onsen resorts. Mt. Aso is a popular destination for hikers, and near this lush region tucked between two mountains, you’ll find the picturesque town of Kurokawa Onsen. This hot spring town boasts various types of onsen supposed to benefit your health in different ways, and Kurokawa Onsen Gosyo Gekkoujyu is a ryokan offering its guests multiple springs to soak in. Alternate between the open-air baths and the indoor springs as many times as you please, and feel your body and mind relax in the gorgeous surroundings. The alluring, spacious rooms provide great privacy, comfortable beds, and amazing nature views.
Location: Aso, Kumamoto Prefecture
AMANE resort SEIKAI
Also located in Kyushu, Beppu is known as the ‘onsen capital of Japan’. So how to choose between the many ryokan in this hot spring-rich city? If you are looking for a supremely comfortable stay, AMANE resort SEIKAI is a great choice. The rooms have been designed with a perfect mix between Japanese and Western styles, and some of the suites come with a relaxing private onsen bath. The restaurants at this luxury accommodation offer options for Japanese and Western cuisine, and their excellent breakfast will be one of the highlights of your vacation. One of the hotel’s most outstanding features is the rooftop infinity pool with sweeping ocean views.
Location: Beppu, Oita Prefecture
If you are looking to venture well off the beaten path, Mimasaka in Okayama Prefecture might be the perfect destination for you. It is a convenient stopover between Osaka and Himeji with its stunning castle, art island Naoshima, or history-rich Hiroshima, and a great way to incorporate a relaxing stop on your trip through western Honshu. Kifuno Sato is a charming ryokan with friendly and accommodating staff who will do everything they can to make your stay as comfortable as possible. The rooms are decorated simply yet stylish, and some rooms come with a private onsen bath. There is also a public bath for all guests to enjoy, and the countryside surroundings will surely help you reach a state of peaceful tranquility.
Location: Mimasaka, Okayama Prefecture
When Tokyo’s city dwellers want to relax in natural surroundings without having to travel too far, hot spring town Atami is a popular destination. In summer, there are plenty of beaches nearby to enjoy a swim in the ocean, and during the colder months there is nothing better than soaking in an outdoor hot spring while feeling the cool air on your face. Watei Kazekomichi is one of the town’s best onsen hotels with impressive ocean views from the baths. The rooms are a great mix between Western-style comforts and Japanese-style aesthetics, and all rooms boast a private open-air bath with superb views of the mountains, city, and ocean. Foodies will also love this ryokan, as they serve beautifully presented Japanese cuisine with only the freshest ingredients.
Location: Atami, Shizuoka Prefecture
Ochiairo is located in the middle of nature-rich Izu Peninsula with its many great hiking trails, and a stay at this ryokan will make it easy for you to decompress and leave all your woes behind for a bit. Although boasting a traditional design, you can enjoy all the comforts of a modern hotel as well as a very cozy atmosphere at this upscale accommodation. But one of the best things about this pleasant ryokan is the fantastic indoor and outdoor onsen baths, with one uniquely located in a dark cavern. Also remarkably good are the meals served here, consisting of the freshest catch of the day and grated wasabi (yes – the real thing) sourced from the fields nearby.
Location: Izu, Shizuoka Prefecture
While many travelers visiting Japan steer away from staying at a luxury ryokan at multiple destinations due to the cost, splurging on a 1- or 2-night stay at a high-end ryokan is definitely an exquisite and worthwhile experience. We are sure that your stay at a luxury ryokan in Japan will likely become one of the most unforgettable highlights of your trip!
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▶Tokyo Fish Market Tour @Tsukiji – Enjoy Local Food and Drink
Explore the most lively and popular fish market in Tokyo and try some of the local’s favorite street foods and sake with one of our friendly and knowledgeable English speaking guides!
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