Yamabiko Ryokan (Kurokawa Onsen), Traditional Japanese dinner

Yamabiko Ryokan (Review)

Family-Friendly Rustic Inn In Kurokawa Onsen

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Yamabiko Ryokan is a 3-stars Japanese thermal inn located in Kurokawa Onsen, a village part of Minami-Oguni city in Kumamoto prefecture on Kyushu Island. The place offers large outdoor baths in the heart of nature and rooms that can accommodate families and small groups.

In Kyushu Island’s Mount Aso area, Kurokawa Onsen ♨️ is one of Japan’s best thermal destinations. The village is established in an exceptional natural environment, on the banks of the Tanoharu river and surrounded by beautiful green mountains. Each of its traditional ryokan inns provide a unique and authentic experience, in the heart of the Onsen bath culture of Japan.

Located at the center of the spa village, Yamabiko Ryokan’s buildings are spreading on both banks of the river; a covered bridge connects the 2 sides within the inn’s precincts. The 3 main services of the inn, that is to say: accommodation, meals and hot baths, are dispatched in dedicated pavilions and guests walk between each place wearing a yukata 👘 lent upon arrival.

Yamabiko Ryokan (Kurokawa Onsen), Lucky God statue in the inn's inner garden

With a rather rustic wooden decor that reminds of snowy mountain huts, Yamabiko Ryokan is quite spacious, and especially suitable to families with young children and small groups of friends. It has 19 rooms:

  • 7 Japanese-style rooms, available in various superficies with futon bedding;
  • 2 Japanese-style suites with 2 rooms for families and up to 8 guests;
  • 9 rooms in a mixed Japanese-Western style, with Western-style twin beds, that can accommodate up to 6 persons. 3 of these rooms are also equipped with a kitchenette; and,
  • 1 special suite called "Kura" (upon reservation, for 2 persons maximum), the high-end range of the inn, with a private bath.

All the rooms are clean and fitted with reversible air conditioning, a Wi-Fi internet 📶 connection and private WC. Some have a view on the river or on the mountain, which comes at a higher reservation price.

Lounges for relaxing are arranged at each floor of the rooms’ building, as well as a playroom with a ping-pong table for evening games. Additionally, the inn offers a surprising plan for dogs, with an onsen bath exclusively dedicated to the beloved pets.

Yamabiko Ryokan (Kurokawa Onsen), Lounge 2

Shared outdoor baths and private onsen

For washing, relaxing or taking care of their skin, Yamabiko Ryokan’s customers can choose from:

  • 4 shared baths, divided into men and women’s baths, located indoor and outdoor. The 2 outdoor onsen are called Sennin Furo, and are also accessible to day-trip visitors, like bath-hoppers enjoying the Kurokawa Onsen rotenburo meguri tour thanks to the nyuto tegata pass ; and,
  • 6 small private pools, either in wood or carved in the rock, to use for example, as a couple or a family. Open 24/7 and free, these private onsen do not require advance reservation; however, if the door is closed, it means that the pool is currently occupied.

The 1rst quick bath before dinner puts in a good mood to discover Japanese traditional cuisine served in the kaiseki fashion, in a succession of small savory dishes made with local ingredients that vary according to the season.

Yamabiko Ryokan (Kurokawa Onsen), Traditional Japanese breakfast

Guests, however, are advised to mind the schedule for eating: the ryokan has indeed only a 1 hour time frame for its restaurant service:

  • Dinner is served between 6 p.m. and 7 p.m.; then,
  • Breakfast is served between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m.

Meals are thus served on time at the restaurant located in its dedicated building, and there is no service in the room. After dinner a last bath is the way to go to relax completely and have a good night of sleep.

Due to being sheltered in a forest valley Kurokawa Onsen is on average slightly colder, by approximately 5°C, compared to Kumamoto City. Less popular among Japanese people in summer, and once the tsuyu ☔️ rainy season is finished, the destination can offer a good deal regarding the price – quality ratio for an authentic stay in the heart of the Japanese volcanic nature.

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⬇️ Further down this page, discover our visit guide in Yamabiko Ryokan and around.
By Kanpai Updated on July 02, 2024 Yamabiko Ryokan (avis)