• Kurokawa Onsen to Minamioguni

Kurokawa Onsen

The Minamioguni spa resort

Kurokawa Onsen is a mountain spa located on the slopes of the Aso Massif in Aso District (Kumamoto Prefecture) on Kyushu Island. It is one of the most popular and renowned spas in Japan, and has many luxury spas.

To get to Kurokawa Onsen from Fukuoka, take the bus from Hakata station (2 hours and 30 minutes direct trip). From Kumamoto, it is necessary to take the bus Kyushu Odan to Kurokawa Onsen (2 hours and 30 minutes of direct trip), but it is necessary to be careful because this bus ensures only two connections per day.

In Kurokawa Onsen the ryokan (traditional Japanese inns) follow one another along the valley on the banks of the Tanohara River. Some of them have existed for several centuries and all have their own onsen (thermal bath), most of them being large outdoor stone baths (rotenburo) located in the middle of nature and surrounded by forest. An idyllic setting to enjoy the hot springs and traditional Japanese thermal luxury!

To find your way among the many establishments and bathing places in Kurokawa Onsen, and to identify those that are open to the public, those that can be visited during the day, and those that can be frequented according to gender, it is advisable to start your visit of the village with the information center. There you can get a lot of advice on what to look for and a map of the area.

For accommodation, it is advisable to choose an authentic traditional inn (ryokan). For an authentic immersion in Japanese tradition, you can opt for a formula including the kaiseki menu (a gastronomic meal consisting of a series of several refined dishes) and a night in an inn. It is recommended to reserve well in advance, especially for a stay during the red maple leaf season or for Golden Week in the spring.

With a more limited budget, one can still enjoy the baths at Kurokawa Onsen even without spending the night in a hostel, as the village baths are open to the public during the day. It is possible to opt for a pass that allows you to test 3 Onsen for only 1300 yen.

Apart from the baths, the visit of the village is worth the detour. One feels transported to the Edo period and it is not uncommon to come across visitors in Yukata (the traditional bathing attire) and wooden tap dance. In the Kurokawa Onsen area, one can also tackle the ascent of the peaks of the Aso Caldera.

Kurokawa Onsen in Japan map

General informations

Kurokawa Onsen in japanese : 黒川温泉

Municipality : Minamioguni

Region : Kyushu

Prefecture : Kumamoto

Population : 4,600 inhabitants

Density : 40 inhab/km²

Link : Official Website

  • onsen in Minamioguni, Japan

Where to sleep in Kurokawa Onsen

among the best rated ryokans
Miyama Sansou

Miyama Sansou

Opened in October 2014, Miyama Sansou offers a large public hot spring baths and sophisticated guest rooms surrounded by untouched nature in the Kurokawa Hot Spring area. All rooms come with a private indoor or open-air hot spring bath, as well.

Yamabiko Ryokan

Yamabiko Ryokan

Located in the Kurokawa hot-spring area, Yamabiko Ryokan offers public indoor/outdoor hot-spring baths and some rooms with mountain or river views. Free Wi-Fi is available at the public area and guests can request relaxing massages for an extra cost. JR Aso Train Station is a 1-hour drive away.

Yamamizuki

Yamamizuki

Yamamizuki offers hot spring baths and Japanese-style rooms with river or nature views and a private coffee machine, some boasting a private hot spring bath. It features free Wi-Fi at the lobby, a souvenir shop and free parking.

Kurokawa So

Kurokawa-So

Boasting 6 different hot spring baths, Kurokawa-So is a traditional ryokan accommodation nestled in a tranquil valley along the river. It features some Japanese-style guest rooms with tatami (woven-straw) flooring.

Ryokan Kono Yu

Ryokan Kono-Yu

Boasting individual Japanese-style houses and maisonettes with a private open-air hot spring bath, Ryokan Kono-Yu is nestled in lush greenery in the peaceful Kurokawa hot spring area. Free Wi-Fi is provided in the lobby, and spacious public baths are available. Modern Kumamoto cuisine prepared with local ingredients is offered.

among the best rated ryokans
Ryokan Wakaba

Ryokan Wakaba

Boasting spacious indoor and outdoor hot spring baths surrounded by lush greenery, Ryokan Wakaba provides Japanese-style accommodation in the peaceful mountain area. Free Wi-Fi is offered in the public area, and parking is available for free.

Fujiya

Fujiya

Situated along a river in Kurokawa Hot Spring area, Fujiya offers traditional Japanese-style accommodation boasting natural hot spring baths. Guests staying at the adult-only property are welcomed with complimentary tea, and they are free to unwind in the cosy communal lounge. Free WiFi can be used in the public area.

Kurokawa Onsen Oyado Noshiyu

Kurokawa Onsen Oyado Noshiyu

Located in the centre of Kurokawa Onsen, Oyado Noshiyu offers outdoor and indoor hot-spring baths, Japanese-style accommodations and a traditional teahouse. It also features a lounge with complimentary coffee and WiFi, a terrace and a garden. Free parking is available.

Ryokan Sanga

Ryokan Sanga

Situated among tranquil Japanese gardens, Ryokan Sanga boasts spacious open-air hot spring baths and classic Japanese-style guest rooms with a relaxing ambience. The cosy lobby lounge comes with comfortable sofas, a fireplace and free Wi-Fi. Free parking is available.

Okyakuya

Okyakuya

Built in 1722, Okyakuya is situated in the historical district of Kurokawa Onsen district. Located only 100 m from Kurokawa Onsen, Free WiFi is provided and private parking is available on site.

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Transportation for Kurokawa Onsen

Access

Direct bus from Fukuoka :

  • Departure from Hakata station
  • Departure from Fukuoka airport

Direct bus from Kumamoto :

  • Departure from Kumamoto train station
  • Departure from Kumamoto airport

Direct bus from Yufuin :

  • Departure from Yufuin train station (bus center)

Direct bus from Beppu :

  • Departure from Beppu station (Honmachi)