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One of the Best Secluded Hot Springs, Shinmoeso in Shinyu Onsen

Onsen Sommelier Musashi
Published Feb 24, 2016

Shinmoeso inn in Shinyu Onsen is a pleasant hot spring accommodation located in Kirishima city’s Takachiho, 920 meters above the ground. The entire surrounding area is full of sulfuric vents which makes it perfect for a hot spring treatment vacation. However, there are no other inns around and you will get to know the true meaning of a “secluded hot spring”.

This place was chosen as one of the best secluded hot springs in Japan in a 1995 ranking by a major newspaper. Let me introduce this famous Kagoshima inn.

The inn was reopened last year after being closed because of Mt Shinmoedake’s eruption

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Shimoeso inn was closed for one year and a half after Mt Shinmoedake (1421 meters ) erupted and the access to the area was restricted. Finally in July 2012 the inn was opened again for visitors. This was a very celebrated occasion, as Shinyu Onsen hot spring region has many fans from all over the country and people couldn’t wait to come here again.

See our full list of recommended Hotels in kirishima and also compare the prices with airbnbs in kirishima

Shinyu Onsen fascinates with its blue and white water

This is the color that people associate Shinyu Onsen’s hot springs with. The blue and milky white shade is typical for the hot springs in Kirishima. Not only I get excited when I see this pool!

It’s really great how the hot water comes out of the stone and mortar-covered wall and delivers all the important sulfuric components.

This is a sulfuric thermal hot spring with a very strong smell of hydrogen sulfide. A sign says that you shouldn’t stay more than 30 minutes.

Actually, once you enter Shinyu Onsen’s hot springs, you wouldn’t be able to remove the smell of sulfur from your body on the next day.

See our full list of recommended Hotels in kirishima and also compare the prices with airbnbs in kirishima

The highlight of this hot spring is the gender mixed open air bath

Another popular thing that Shinyu Onsen is associated with are the gender-mixed open-air baths. This one also has blue and milky white colored water. The original hot spring source has a temperature of over 60 degrees, so additional natural water is added to make the pool temperature comfortable. When I went there the temperature was 41 degrees and it was quite pleasant.



The water is transparent only for about 20 centimeters under the surface which means that women can possibly enjoy the gender-mixed bath too. In fact every time I visit this place it’s early morning during the weekdays so I still haven’t seen a woman bathing inside. I’m just assuming they might enjoy.

See our full list of recommended Hotels in kirishima and also compare the prices with airbnbs in kirishima

The pool for health treatment has an even stronger sulfuric smell!

Finally, let me introduce the special hot spring pool for health treatment. When Shinyu Onsen was originally developed in the Meiji period, it became famous for treating dermatosis and other skin diseases. Even now many people come here for treatment. 



Similarly to the other indoor bath, the water comes from a pipe in the wall. But there’s something unique when you look closely – from time to time muddy pieces of sulfur fall into the pool together with the hot water. I was really amazed by this view! This bath is made for health treatment and once you see it, you’ll certainly understand why.

See our full list of recommended Hotels in kirishima and also compare the prices with airbnbs in kirishima

Shinyu Onsen’s Shinmoeso inn

Quite a few disasters have happened in Shinyu Onsen. In 1951 a big landslide caused by a typhoon killed 9 people. In 1989 hydrogen sulfide gases killed 2 people, while in 2011 Mt Shinmoedake erupted… Nevertheless, visitors and hot spring fans have never stopped coming to Shinyu Onsen. I myself have been here many times.



See our full list of recommended Hotels in kirishima and also compare the prices with airbnbs in kirishima

Out of all the Kagoshima hot springs that I’ve visited

I can indeed say that this is one of the best. Be sure to visit it when you go to Kagoshima’s Kirishima city.


Hot spring: Shinyu Onsen Facility: Shinmoeso inn Address: Kagoshima prefecture, Kirishima city, Makizonocho, Takachiho 3968 Telephone: 0995-78-2255 Hot spring type: Thermal sulfuric Good for treating: Chronic skin diseases, chronic female diseases, burns, etc. Day trup visit: From 8 am to 8 pm, 500 JPY Rest time: From 8 am to 4 pm, from 1000 JPY

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