If you want to spend the time off from the hustle and bustle of city living, you might want to stay in one of the many beautiful ryokans in Japan. From Kyoto to Hokkaido, these traditional inns are perfect for rejuvenating because of its relaxing facilities and superb views of nature. Typical features of ryokans include tatami-matted rooms, wooden tables, sliding doors, communal baths and sometimes an onsen (hot spring). More to that, you can wear yukata robes and talk with the owner when you are in a ryokan, which will bring your Japanese culture experience to a whole new level.
The best part of staying in a ryokan is the chance to be transported back in time and get in touch with the well-preserved traditions of the Japanese people. Amid modernization, ryokans, for the most part, have stayed true to its roots and are designed in lieu of Japan’s rich customs. Here are 10 amazing ryokans in Japan that you can visit for a dreamy stay.
1. Zaborin Ryokan, Hokkaido
Situated in the Hanazono woods in Hokkaido, Zaborin is the perfect place to reconnect with nature while enjoying Japan’s rich tradition. Fusing simple contemporary and old designs, this ryokan compliments the soothing surroundings in the woods. It has 15 separate villas with a private indoor and open-air hot spring baths (onsen). Zaborin also serves fine Japanese cuisines to satisfy your taste buds.
Location: 76-4 Hanazono Kutchan-cho, Abuta-gun, Hokkaido, Japan 044-0084
Price: from SGD $ 1713/night on Booking.com
2. Ryokan Kurashiki
Located in the beautiful Bikan Historical District in the town of Kurashiki, Ryokan Kurashiki is situated at the foot of Nakabashi Bridge, making it very close to numerous attractions in the town. You can choose from its luxury, deluxe and standard suites. This ryokan has a large bath which is available for all the guests. Its dining offerings are superb too which includes a Kaiseki cuisine, which is inspired by nature and the different seasons in Japan. This dining offering uses the freshest local flavors that would satisfy your tastebuds. Its dining room called “kamizashiki” offers the best view of the kurashiki and the garden. It has numerous restaurants too to give you the best dining experience.
Location: Ryokan Kurashiki, 4-1 Honmachi, Kurashiki, 710-0054, Japan
3. Nishimuraya Honkan, Toyooka City
Nishimuraya Honkan is truly a paradise for relaxation and rejuvenation. This ryokan has a beautiful garden in the middle, which is visible through the windows of the rooms. Its lobby lounge is designed using European and Japanese-style architecture. It has also a museum which contains a collection of historic artifacts and photographs. What makes this ryokan more outstanding is its various beautiful hot springs to help you relax and rejuvenate. Among its hot springs are the Kichino-yu or the Japanese-style hot spring, the Fukuno-yu which or the Chinese-style hot spring, and the Shouno-yu or the Hiratakan annexe hot spring. It has also an open-air private spa in the forest with a beautiful view of nature. It has also a spa called Relaxation Salon Fuka which is perfect for relaxation.
Location: 469 Yushima, Kinosaki-cho, Toyooka City, Hyogo 669-6101, Japan
Price: from SGD $ 635/night on Booking.com
4. Sadachiyo, Tokyo
Located in the central part of Tokyo is Sadachiyo. But despite the fact that it is built within the city, this ryokan is very peaceful since it is situated far from the main road. Sadachiyo is home to numerous Japanese antiques which will help you immersed in the Edo era. Its rooms are also designed woodblockblock paints, giving you a traditional atmosphere unlike elsewhere. The rooms are also covered with tatami, which are mats weaved using straws. A Japanese-style bedding is also available, which is put directly on the tatami-matted floor. A wooden bath and a stone bath are also available in this ryokan.
Location: 2-20-1 Asakusa, Taito-ku, Tokyo 111-0032 Japan
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Price: from SGD $ 242/night on Booking.com
5. Ryokan Sanga, Minamioguni-machi
Ryokan Sanga takes pride in being surrounded by nature. Covered by luscious green trees, this ryokan will help you ease the stress of today’s fast-paced lifestyle. Ryokan Sanga has many hot springs for you to enjoy. It has types of hot springs – a medicinal bath and the new one which is great for your skin. There are a mixed outdoor bath, indoor bath and private bath. Sanga’s rooms are designed in traditional Japanese style. Rooms available include Asebi, Nejiki, Tsuribana and Hisakaki. Sanga also offers a traditional kaiseki dinner, which is prepared using the finest traditional kaiseki dinner.
Location: 6961-1 Manganji, Minamioguni-machi, Aso-gun, Kumamoto-ken
Price: from SGD $ 400/night on Booking.com
6. Gora Sounkaku, Ashigarashimo-gun
This ryokan has an outstanding view of the mountains and the sky. Different rooms are available including a suite room with private open-air bath, a Japanese style room with a Hakone Mountain Range view, a Japanese style room surrounded by the Souun-Zan Forest, and a Japanese Style room surrounded by a garden at the 1st floor. There are different onsens or hot springs available too in this ryokan including a public bath with a hot spring and cold spring tubs and a private open-air bath. This ryokan also serves outstanding cuisines including a seasonal cuisine using the Finest Hida Beef and Fresh Fishes.
Location: Hakone Machi Gora 1300-492, Ashigarashimo-gun, Kanagawa, 250-0408
Price: from SGD $ 911/night
7. Shimaya Ryokan, Yamanouchi
Located at the foot of mountains of Shiga Highlands is the Shimaya Ryokan. This ryokan takes pride of its hot spring wherein its water comes from the Hoshikawa River’s riverbed which is about 300m away. Shimaya Ryokan has two large communal baths, one family bath and one small private bath. As the water comes from a natural source, the hot spring is indeed good for the health. It’s Japanese rooms have two options, the 10 tatami mats in size type and the 8 tatami mats in size type. Its dining area is designed in a retro-style. This ryokan also serves delicious meals that use seasonal ingredients. Its meals come in different meal plans such as the Standard Plan, Shoukado-gozen Plan and the morning plan.
Location: Yudanaka Onsen Yamanouchi-machi, Shimotakai-gun Nagan
Price: from SGD $ 147/night on Booking.com
8. Matsubaya Ryokan, Kyoto
This wooden two-story building ryokan has been around for many years and one can truly enjoy the traditional Japanese culture when you become a guest at Matsubaya Ryokan. With its Japanese bed or Futon, Japanese wear or Yukata and the Japanese Tatami-floor room, this ryokan will surely make you experience pure Japanese tradition. There are different traditional rooms available such as the 1-room type, 2 rooms type, 5 rooms type and the 8 rooms type.
Location: Nishi-iru, Higashinotouin, Kamijuzuyamachi-dori, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto City, Japan
Price: from SGD $ 175/night on Booking.com
9. Andon Ryokan, Tokyo
Located a few minutes away from the Arakawa Line Minowabashi Station and the Hibiya Line Minowa Station, this ryokan has 24 guest rooms. It has a koagari or a raised tatami-floored seating area where one can enjoy a cup of tea after a long tiring day or where one can chat with family and friends. There is also a rooftop terrace or the “Andon Sky Terrace” where one can enjoy the view of the Tokyo Tower and the Tokyo Skytree. It is also a perfect place for yoga or to drink some ice cold beer during the evening. There is also a tea corner on each floor. A jacuzzi is also available for private parties where you can see a wall art made out of Ariake tiles created by pop artist Mie Ishii. The owner is an antique collector, hence this ryokan is filled with his antique collections that you will surely be thrilled to see.
Location: 2-34-10, Nihonzutsumi, Taito, Tokyo, 111-0021
Price: from SGD $ 99/night on Booking.com
10. Ryokan Matsushima
Founded in 1874, staying in this ryokan will surely transport you back in time. Single rooms and twin rooms are available in this ryokan. Its rooms have 18 tatami mats that will surely give you that traditional Japanese vibe. There is also a garden where you can relax. Ryokan Matsushima also offers delicious shochu. It also offers banquets for you and your family to enjoy. This ryokan also provides a show or a presentation for its visitors upon request such as how to properly wear a kimono costume.
Location: 863, Makita, Minami-ku, Yokohama-shi, Kanagawa-ken, 232-0043
Price: from SGD $ 178/night on Agoda
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