Ryokan -1-

Posted October 1st, 2009 in Japan No Comments »

While staying in Japan my husband and I went on a little trip to Kyushu island, southernmost of the 4 main islands of Japan. It was actually my first time going to this island. The purpose of going to Kyushu was, the famous Onsen. I was dying to go to Onsen because I’m Japanese, but hadn’t taken proper bath for long long time… (Japanese people take bath everyday) And, I had been to Onsen just few times in my life, so I wanted to go on Onsen trip with my husband together.

I asked one of my friend -an Onsen Somurie (expert)- which Onsen we should go to. It was kind a special occasion for us (just married) and there are thousands of good Onsen around Japan. She recommended me an Onsen ryokan in Yufuin, in Ooita prefecture in Kyushu island. Ryokan is a term for a Japanese style hotel, and usually features tatami-matted rooms, sleep on futon on the tatami floor, and has everything you can imagine of “Japan”. Guests wear yukata (Japanese casual summer wear /after-bath wear) and walk around public area. Usually staying in a ryokan is more expensive than staying in a normal hotel.

Yufuin is one of famous Onsen area in Japan, and I had seen many tv programs featuring this area on tv before (like “Postcard WA” type of tv show). A ryokan my friend recommended me is called “Gettouan”, and I decided to stay there as our petit honeymoon. Because it was a special occasion, I booked a room in their annex with Honeymoon Plan. The annex is separated from its main building and we had to walk through a bridge – the view and atmosphere was magnificent!!! Sooo beautiful.

Our room – like a house – had a beautiful garden with natural mountains and river in background (of course the garden was surrounded with wooden wall for privacy), with private bathroom where we can enjoy Onsen (natural hot spa) by ourselves. Everything around this building is made un-artificial (eg: no concrete walls, no electric wires ) and I felt like I was back in samurai era!

I will write about the room, staff and food in another post. Staying in this ryokan was like a “dream” and took all my stress away!

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