Day 1 - Kyoto - Kinosaki Onsen (D)
Today is a self-guided day.
This morning take the train to the seaside town of Kinosaki. On arrival at Kinosaki train station, take the free shuttle bus to your accommodation or check in your luggage at the train station (pay-on-spot; your luggage will be delivered to your hotel) and start discovering this quintessential Japanese onsen (hot spring bath) town on the coast of the Sea of Japan that has preserved its charming atmosphere.
Suggested Self-Guide Itinerary:
After the walk, check-in at your hotel, pick up your tickets to the onsen, change to yukata (Japanese robes) and geta (wooden clogs), and stroll around town along the willow tree-lined small river, visiting some of the seven hot spring baths there. The tour of the seven onsen is called “Sotoyu Meguri Tour” and is a tradition amongst visitors in Kinosaki. You will meet many fellow travelers in the streets in yukata and geta, with towels on their shoulders.
The hot spring baths usually open at 7:00 a.m. and close at 10:30 p.m. (please inquire at the reception about closing days). If your preferred onsen is closed today, you will have an opportunity to visit it tomorrow.
Tonight, you will be staying at a ryokan, a traditional Japanese-style inn that comes with tatami-floored rooms and sliding rice-paper doors. For dinner, you will be having a multi-course meal that consists of some local produce from Kinosaki.
Before you bed down on your futon, you may want to soak in the ryokan’s shared hot spring bath.
Overnight in Kinosaki
Distance and journey time:
JR Kyoto Station to JR Kinosaki-onsen Station (158km): approx. 2.5hrs