Stay Safe in Japan Update: 21/09/2018, 19:14


More Information

Nature, Great Food and Amazing Hot Springs! The Charms of Yufuin, Oita

Nature, Great Food and Amazing Hot Springs! The Charms of Yufuin, Oita

Oita 2016.10.29 Bookmark

Oita's hot spring town Yufuin combines both a charming rural townscape and gorgeous natural scenery. Along its main street you can enjoy delicious local treats as you browse through fascinating shops.

Translated by Hilary Keyes

Written by MATCHA-PR

Known as the hot spring prefecture thanks to having the highest output of onsen water in Japan,Oita prefecture draws a great number of visitors both domestic and international. The two most popular areas in Oita are Beppu and Yufuin.

Surrounded by the splendor of nature and home to a bustling townscape, today we'd like to tell you more about the charms of Yufuin, where you will find wonderful hot springs you'll want to visit over and over again.

What is Yufuin?

yufuin_kanko1

Called Bungofuji ("the Fuji of Bungo", with Bungo being the historical name of this region), the foothills of Mt.Yufudake spread out into a beautiful rural landscape and a tranquil hot spring town. It goes without saying that there are popular onsen here, but there are also general stores, sweets shops, restaurants filling out this townscape, all of which make Yufuin a wonderful place.

yufuin_kanko2

Most visitors travel through the gateway to Kyushu, Hakata Station, where they take the Yufuin no Morigo, a limited express train. It takes about 2 hours and 20 minutes to reach Yufuin Station from Hakata.

To Sightsee in Yufuin, Where Do You Start?

To begin with, why not take in all the lovely natural charms of Yufuin's town and natural surroundings? When you're sightseeing in Yufuin, there are two recommended ways to do this that we would like to introduce.

The Comfortable Rocking of a Horse-drawn Sightseeing Carriage

yufuin_kanko3

In front of Yufuin Station just waiting to greet visitors is the incredibly popular Sightseeing Horse-drawn Carriage.

yufuin_kanko4

With the quaint sounds of the horse's hooves clip-clopping along the streets, you can enjoy a leisurely excursion around the tranquil rural landscape. With space for a maximum of 10 passengers, there are times when it will be a bit difficult to get on the carriage right away.

Sightseeing Horse-drawn Carriage

View Information

Take a Rickshaw Pulled by a Friendly Driver

yufuin_kanko5

If you are in a small group and would like to see the sights around Yufuin, why not take an Ebisuya Rickshaw? It's an awesome experience, riding through this charming landscape in a rickshaw!

yufuin_kanko6


Our Shafu, Reo Shirakawa

Our shafu (the proper term for a rickshaw driver) Reo Shirakawa, introduced us to many different spots in Yufuin. And when we found a place that we were interested in, she stopped the rickshaw and let us take our time to really enjoy the scenery around us.

Ebisuya Yufuin

View Information

Take a Stroll Down the Yu no Tsubo Kaido

yufuin_kanko7

After first seeing the sights in Yufuin from a vehicle, now let's take a walk for ourselves through the streets. Yufuin's main street, the Yu no Tsubo Kaido, has many restaurants and souvenir shops lined up in rows down both sides.

Enjoy P Rolls at B-Speak in Yufuin

yufuin_kanko8

Near the entrance of the main street you will find a shop that has become quite popular with visitors from overseas: B-speak.

yufuin_kanko9

The fluffy texture and gentle sweetness of their signature P-roll makes this the standout sweet, popular with both domestic and international customers. The ingredients that go into the P-roll are completely additive-free, meaning that this cake has a best before date of just one day. And as there are days where it sells out quickly, if you are desperate to get one, you may consider making a reservation in advance.

B-Speak

View Information

Enjoying Your Time in Various Specialty Shops

yufuin_kanko10

The best way to enjoy the Yu no Tsubo Kaido is when you see a shop that catches your eye, just head on in! This visit, we went to a soy sauce specialist shop.

yufuin_kanko11

There are many different types of soy sauce to choose from here, and you can taste samples of them on tofu. If you find a flavor that really suits you, why not purchase a bottle as a souvenir for yourself?

yufuin_kanko12

Our recommendation is Oita's famous product, yuzu kosho soy sauce.

We then found a shop selling tofu ice cream, which seemed so interesting that we just had to check it out.

yufuin_kanko13

The natural flavor of the soy beans and just the right amount of sweetness make for the perfect ice cream! Enjoying a cone as you walk along the Yu no Tsubo Kaido is a great way to spend the time in Yufuin.

yufuin_kanko14

There are so many different types of shops along the street. There was even a store selling Snoopy-themed souvenirs.

yufuin_kanko15

Don't be shy - take some photos of yourself to remember your trip by!

Visit Kinrinko in the Early Morning

yufuin_kanko16

As you walk from Yufuin Station down along the Yu no Tsubo Kaido, you will arrive at what is perhaps Yufuin's model sightseeing attraction: Kinrinko. Flowing with hot spring water, the temperature of this lake is quite high; on cold winter mornings the difference in the water and air temperature causes a gentle mist to rise up from the lake surface, creating a wondrous and romantic atmosphere.

Enjoy a Relaxed Ambience in Tea Room Nicol

yufuin_kanko17

After walking along the bustling Yu no Tsubo Kaido for awhile, you may find yourself feeling a little tired, and when that happens, you should head a short distance from the main street and visit Tea Room Nicol.

yufuin_kanko18

Their apple pie is so famous here that it often sells out by mid-morning, but passing the time with their original chiffon cake and herb tea feels incredibly luxurious.

This is another of their amazing set courses. Anpan (sweet buns with red bean paste) from Beppu's well-known bakery, Tomonaga Bakery, served with a glass of fresh milk from Tsukawara Farm in Yufuin make for an excellent treat.

yufuin_kanko19

And, if you find that you aren't able to finish your anpan bread, you have it to go instead.

Tea Room Nicol

View Information

Enjoy Yufuin's Picturesque Scenery: Musouen

yufuin_kanko20

After enjoying your stroll, head towards Yufuindake where you can overlook the entirety of the town from the large open-air bath available to guests staying at Musouen.

Photo courtesy of: Musouen

On a clear day you can enjoy a gorgeous panoramic view of Yufuindake as you soak in this luxurious hot spring. You're sure to want to come back to Yufuin again and again after this experience!

MUSOUEN

View Information

Stretch Your Legs in Yunohira Onsen!

yufuin_kanko23

The final place we would like to introduce you to is Yunohira Onsen, located a 20 minute drive from Yufuin Onsen. With a history older than that of Yufuin itself, this place is a must for fans of hot springs and hot spring towns.

The Proprietress' Pride: Yunohiran Ice Cream

yufuin_kanko22

One of the most enticing points of Yunohira Onsen is the handmade ice cream, Yunihiran Ice Cream, made by the proprietress of the hot spring inn. This ice cream, entirely made with seasonal local products, is not only popular with travelers but is well-loved by the residents of the area as well.

yufuin_kanko24

The great natural textures and flavors of the ingredients are perfectly suited to the ice creams and gelato, but all of the flavors available are season-limited. They are so good that you will find yourself wanting to try them all!

Visitors to Japan Should Stay at the Popular Yamashiroya Ryokan

yufuin_kanko25

At Yunohira Onsen, more than half of the international visitors come to stay at Yamashiroya Ryokan. With an authentically old Japanese atmosphere and reservable open-air bath, news of this traditional Japanese inn has spread world-wide, making it a must-stay place for many.

yufuin_kanko26


Yamashiroya's Proprietress, Ms. Ninomiya

Perhaps the greatest selling point of this ryokan is the English-speaking eager proprietress, Ms. Ninomiya's wonderful omotenashi (hospitality). Her fascination with learning all about the home countries of her guests and ability to share news from their homeland with them makes Ms. Ninomiya and her charming attitude quite the popular person in this ryokan!

Yamashiroya Ryokan

View Information

In Conclusion

What do you think? We've only introduced here a fraction of just what makes visitors to Yufuin want to come back again and again. Beyond the many charms of Yu no Tsubo Kaido mentioned here, there are many, many other lovely shops to see. By all means, please head to Yufuin and find the shop that best suits you too!

The information presented in this article is based on the time it was written. Note that there may be changes in the merchandise, services, and prices that have occurred after this article was published. Please contact the facility or facilities in this article directly before visiting.

Related topics