Hi, this is the last episode of my trip and I will introduce 2 main Onsen spots where we visited during the trip. Onsen visiting is the largest purpose and of course, we all were excited to spend our time there!
Compared to other local area, there are a small number of Onsen resorts in the western area in the main island. Yuda Onsen is one of awesome Onsen resorts in the area, where locates in Yamaguchi city (the center of the prefecture) and 10 minutes’ walk away from JR Yuda Onsen Station.The onsen was found almost 600 years ago with a legend that a monk of a temple at the foot of mountains found white foxes came to soak into the hot-spring there. “Yuda” means literally “Hot water & rice field” in Japanese and this is the name of origin that the hot water came up from the rice field.
We choose the Japanese Style Inn called “Sansuien” as our accommodation for the 1st night. Architectures of the inn have traditional appearance with very large Japanese garden. Additionally, it is famous for visiting Japanese Imperial Family in the past. What we were most excited was Onsen of the inn, of course! The Onsen quality of Yuda is alkaline simple spring water which is very mild and less stimulated for your skin. In addition, Onsen water of the inn is springing up all the time and never stop, so you can enjoy very fresh spring water anytime! They have 2 types of Onsen facilities, the outer bath and the inner bath. The outer bath is next to the main building and people who will not stay in the inn can also drop in this facility. For the inner bath, only guests of the inn can use there. Luckily, it was on Friday and guests were just 2 groups including us, so that we could occupied the inner bath almost all time during our stay.
Sansuien can be one of options in Yuda Onsen If you prefer to stay in the traditional styled Japanese inn, however, their “Omotenashi” is a kind of “butler” style (they don’t have the reception desk at the entrance) so that you have to call a staff anytime by phone from your room whenever you have some inquiry. In case you think it troublesome, you had better stay at other accommodation and just visiting to the outer bath facility for dropping by.
Yuyawan is a bay locates on the north western area of Yamaguchi, near Tsunoshima and Motonosumi Shrine. “Hotel Yokikan” where we stayed for the 2nd night is the only hotel in the area which was built on the edge of Yuyawan and the best feature is the landscape of sunrise and sunset on the ocean from the hotel. The weather of our trip on the 2nd day was terrible snow, so that we all were anxious whether we can see the beautiful sunset from our rooms, however, snow had stopped when we arrived at the hotel in the late afternoon and we were able to see the sunset although it was not very clear.
The hotel also has 2 different types of Onsen. The water quality is almost the same as the one in Yuda and we could enjoy wider ocean views in front of the hotel from the outer bath even though outside was so cold and freezing!! The Onsen water in Yamaguchi seemed suite for my skin, so I soak into the bath totally 3 times during our stay. Additionally, the dishes for dinner and breakfast ware also good combinations and amount for me. Yokikan is the completely different style accommodation from the inn in Yuda Onsen, which was the modern designed hotel with family-friendly atmosphere. There were many guests on Saturday and we also found some foreigners from Asian countries although an accessibility to the hotel is not so convenient. (You can visit there by rent-a-car, or the courtesy bus from JR Igami Station, the nearest one.)
Coincidentally, a small recital was held by young male chorus group at the lobby space at night. Some of them belong to the professional theater companies and/or work as professional solo player. One of the members originally come from the area and they visit the hotel sometimes in between their performances. The hotel sometimes plans such a surprising event for guests.
Taking photos inside of both Onsen facilities was prohibited, so that there are no pictures here that I can show you. (Basically, almost all Onsen facilities in Japan are not allow us to taking photos inside the bath rooms.) Regarding to Onsen, especially, It is better for you to visit there in fact and experience by yourselves. Anyway, seeing is believing!
This is all highlights of our annual trip this time. If your Japan visit is not the 1st time and you prefer to discover local areas where haven’t known so much yet among foreign tourists, how about adding to visit Yamaguchi in your trip schedule??