Matsumoto is not that much further north than Tokyo, but it has a very different climate. Nagano prefecture, where Matsumoto is based in, is famous for housing the Japanese Alps. This volcanic mountain range may stretch across a wide portion of Japan but Nagano is where the highest points can be found. Because of this increased altitude, the area is a lot colder and perfect for skiing as well as other winter sports. The Japanese Alps are volcanic and heat up many pockets of water in the region. This has led to an abundance of hot springs that are a massive tourism draw for the local area. So here is our list of the best tourist-friendly Onsen Ryokan In Matsumoto, Nagano Prefecture.
Relaxing in an onsen bath is an essential part of the Japanese experience. Myojinkan understands this and generously offers guests the choice between two different types of bath, both indoors and outdoors. The indoor bath might protect you from rain or fallen leaves, but the outdoor onsen is the more traditional of the two. Having your head and shoulders exposed to the refreshing breezes whilst the lower part of your body stays nice and warm in the water is a fabulous feeling. Additionally, the ryokan offers spa treatments such as a facial cleanse or a massage that guests are welcome to. They have western-style rooms and have rental bicycles that you can use to get about town.
Keiryu-so Shiorie is a smartly designed ryokan that adheres to Japanese aesthetics wherever possible. The whole building is picturesque and serene. Their rooms are set out in a traditional Japanese style, meaning they have tatami mat floors and comfortable futon beds. They also have both indoor and outdoor onsen baths that guests are free to use at their leisure. The ryokan is especially proud of their Kaiseki meals. These meals are brought to diners in a succession of small courses that add up to one big meal. This way you can sample a whole host of delightful Japanese dishes, experiencing many different tastes all in one meal. They have both French and Japanese meals available all made with the freshest local ingredients.
A super convenient ryokan that is perfect for those who want to get around easily. The ryokan is just a 10-minute walk away from Matsumoto station and then another 10 minute-walk away from Matsumoto castle. It’s a great location and the staff are always happy to help guests if they need to book anything or plan their excursions to the local sights. They have both western and Japanese-style rooms for guests to choose from.
This ryokan has the individual bonus of being wheelchair accessible. Not a lot of places in Japan are easily accessible for the disabled. Unlike many western countries, there are no laws or social pressures about catering to wheelchair users so many business just don’t. Hotel Tamanoyu has you covered though and they are always happy to have wheelchair using guests. The ryokan has an onsen that is available for all guests. There is an indoor bathhouse and an outdoor traditional onsen. The rooms are more traditional, using futons. Sometimes, the ryokan hosts classical music concerts.
This ryokan has been operating since 1876 and it has maintained the Japanese charm that kept them in business for so long. Guests are treated to kind and polite staff that are willing to help you with any problems you may have. The rooms carry a traditional Japanese style, as is the whole building and the outdoor onsen. Izumiya Zenbe has a variety of baths to choose from each offering a different advantage. Onsen baths are supposed to be therapeutic, and good for your skin, joints and digestion. Different baths have different temperatures and chemical mixtures due to the natural elements found in the underground hot-springs. You can pick the perfect bath for your body’s needs.
This beautifully rustic ryokan is ready for guests who want to experience traditional Japan. You can stay here and sleep in a classical Japanese designed room, eat high quality local specialities at the restaurant and relax in traditional onsen. There are also massages and rental cars available for those willing to pay a bit extra.
Another Japanese style accommodation. Guest get to experience the unique, Japanese feel of a hotel room that has woven reed tatami mats on the floor and surprisingly comfortable futons. From the rooms, you can get amazing views of the surrounding mountains and enjoy the fresh mountain air whilst you bathe in an outdoor onsen. This ryokan also has real vegetarian meals available in its restaurant. This is something not always available in Japan.
Hotel Shirakabaso (Kamikochi) is famous for the beauty of the surrounding landscape. Located right next to Kamikochi mountain and with great views of the whole mountain chain, this ryokan is a fantastic place for photographers and anyone who enjoys a good mountain view. They are very proud of their in-house restaurant that serves local speciality cuisine that is made with 100% local foods.
Hotel Shirakabaso (Kamikochi)
Address: 4468 Azumi, Matsumoto-shi, Nagano Prefecture
Price: from 158 USD
Access: From Matsumoto Station (JR Chuo Higashi Line): Take a Kamikochi Line train to Shin-Shimashima Station. Get off there and take a bus bound for Kamikochi to the Kamikochi bus stop (about 65 min). It is about 5 min on foot from there. For guests arriving past 17:00, please make sure to contact the hotel in advance. 0263-95-2131 <u>Important Note:</u> It is not possible to drive to the hotel because private automobiles are restricted in the Kamikochi area. Guests must leave their vehicle at a parking area, then travel the remaining distance by bus or taxi. - From the Takayama area: Park at the Hirayu Parking Lot before the tunnel. Take a bus or taxi from there. Bus fare is JPY 1,130 one-way, JPY 2,000 round-trip. Parking costs JPY 1,000 per night. Buses run until about 17:00, so guests arriving later must take a taxi, which costs about JPY 4,000. - From the Matsumoto area: Park at the Sawando Parking Lot, and take a bus or taxi from there. Bus fare is JPY 1,200 one-way, JPY 2,000 round-trip. Parking costs JPY 1,000 per night. Buses run until about 16:00 so guests arriving later will have to take a taxi, which costs about JPY 4,000. (All times and prices listed above are subject to change; please confirm that information beforehand.)
An exemplary ryokan with helpful staff and spacious rooms. Yumoto Saito Ryokan has Japanese-style rooms with the option to rent your own private onsen bath. There is also an onsen that can be used by all guests that has milky water inside. This water is tinged white by natural volcanic elements that are said to be therapeutic. It’s a great, secluded health spa.
Yumoto Saito Ryokan
Address: 4195 Azumi, Matsumoto-shi, Nagano Prefecture
Price: from 216 USD
Access: From Matsumoto Station (JR Chuo-to Line): Take a Kamikochi Line train bound for Shin-Shimashima and get off at Shin-Shimashima Station (about 30 minutes). Then take a Shirahone Onsen Line Bus bound for Shirahone Onsen and get off at the Shirahone Onsen bus stop (about 50 minutes). It is about 10 minutes on foot from there. By car: Exit the Nagano Expressway at Matsumoto IC and continue along National Route 158 until Sawando, then Prefectural Route 300 for about 60 minutes (40 km).
Guests of Matsumoto Hotel Kagetsu can choose from western-style or Japanese-style rooms. Both are spacious, it just depends on the type of bed you prefer. They have a large onsen that guests are encouraged to share, and the traditional Japanese game mahjong is offered up to guests as entertainment. There is also Wi-Fi but playing mahjong is a true Japanese experience.
Matsumoto Hotel Kagetsu
Address: 4-8-9 Ote, Matsumoto-shi, Nagano Prefecture
Price: from 55 USD
Access: From Matsumoto Station (JR Shinonoi Line) East Exit: Take a bus bound for Asama Onsen via Nitta from Matsumoto Bus Terminal and get off at the Agetsuchimachi bus stop (about 10 minutes). It is about 1 minute on foot from there. By car: Exit the Nagano Expressway at the Matsumoto IC and continue along Route 158 for about 25 minutes (7 km) towards Matsumoto Castle.
A winter wonderland
This snowy little part of Japan is great for history buffs and winter sports enthusiast. If you are looking for somewhere to experience Japanese culture but also want to ride down a couple of slopes, then this is the place for you.
Get Trip101 in your inbox
You can buy and claim online, even after you've left home. Travel insurance from WorldNomads.com is available to people from 140 countries. It’s designed for adventurous travellers with cover for overseas medical, evacuation, baggage and a range of adventure sports and activities.
*5% off when you book with our promo code: TRIP101
*For our Canadian and US travellers, unfortunately due to financial services laws, we cannot provide a discount. This promotional code cannot be used with any other discount offer, including World Nomads Members’ discount for travel insurance policy holders.