Hot Spring Exploration
A gentle breeze, dense fog and the melody of the gurgling river stream surrounds the forest of Minakami. This breeze neutralizes the heat of the boiling hot spring. Close your eyes and listen to the chant of wind, the river and the forest as you become a part of nature. All the things above can be experienced in Takaragawa Onsen hot spring in Minakami. Besides being named “No.1 outdoor hot spring in the world”, it is also the filming location for “Thermae Romae II”. Want to get a breath of fresh air and get out of the stressful city? This is the perfect place for a two-day relaxing trip!
Departure from Tokyo Station (Joetsu Shinkansen)
Arrival at Jomo-Kogen Station
1 min walk
The simple local cuisine Soba Noodles “Tenmaru”
1 min walk from Jomo-Kogen Station, you will see the most popular soba noodles restaurant in the area called “Tenmaru”. Tenmaru serves soba noodle that is refreshing and smoothening. The vegetables from Gunma are delicious, and the juicy giant shrimp tempura will surely satisfy you!
- 1146-2 Tsukiyonomachi, Minakami-machi, Tone-gun, Gunma, Japan
- 11:00~20:30 (L.O.19:45)
Closed: Thur & First Wed of the month
Take the bus at Jomo-Kogen Station 1st bus stop
Transit to bus at Minakami Station
Dogen-no-Taki bus stop
Explore the Naramata Dam
The height of the rock-filled Naramata Dam is 158 meters high. A 3 hours walk around this area is recommended. There is a stairway at the dam which allows you to climb up to the top. At the top of the dam, the stunning views of Lake Naramata and the Okutone mountains are right in front of you.
- Fujiwara, Minakami-machi, Tone-gun, Gunma, Japan
Take the bus at Yunokoya-Onsen bus stop
Takaragawa-Onsen-Iriguchi bus stop
10 mins walk
Take a bath in the “No.1 Hot Spring in the World”
- Takaragawa Onsen
Here we are at the highlight of this trip, the “No.1 outdoor hot spring in the world”- Takaragawa Onsen hot spring. The hot springs are formed by streams of Takaragawa hillsides. Takarakawa Onsen hot spring has five outdoor hot springs and one indoor hot spring. The vast outdoor hot spring was also the filming set for the movie “Thermae Romae II”.
- 1899 Fujiwara, Minakami-machi, Tone-gun, Gunma, Japan
- 09:00~18:00 (Last Check-in: 17:00)
The Traditional Cuisine
You will be surprised when you enter the dinning room. All the dishes will be cooked and beautifully set on the table waiting for you, including the featured village roasted vegetables and bear broth. The hostess will cook and serve the meal in front of you, this is a tradition in Japanese dining.
Fall asleep in the forest song and the gentle smell of Tatami
During your stay please do spend your time to relax and enjoy the fresh air while you bath in the outdoor hot spring. Rest and release all the stress in your body. During your bath in the hot spring, the hostess will make the bed for you. The gentle smell of tatami will guide you into your sweet dreams.
Deluxe Breakfast in Takaragawa Onsen
There are two styles for breakfast; Japanese or Western. Both styles provide big portions if required. Start your day big!
Take the bus at Takaragawa-Onsen-Iriguchi bus stop
Transit to another bus at Minakami Station
Doai-Ekimae bus stop
The Journey to the Center of the Earth - Doai Station
Doai Station is known as “Japan’s No.1 Talpidae Station”. This is the closet railway station to the center of the earth in Japan, in other words the deepest underground railway station. Taking a train in this station sometimes feels like going on a journey to the center of the earth! Once you go through the ticket gates, through the long corridors it will take you 10 minutes and around 486 steps to get to the passenger platform. Since it is slightly dark in the station it feels like a never ending journey! Before you start walking down, you better take a deep breath and be prepared because an adventure is ahead! The deserted station looks like a ruin as well as a film set. You really should consider visiting it!
- 218-2 Yubiso, Minakami-machi, Tone-gun, Gunma, Japan
15 mins walk from Doai Station
360 degrees scene from Tanigawadake Ropeway
The ropeway journey offers a breathtaking 360 degree panorama view, just like a walk in the sky! During you journey, the view of mountains gets wider and grander. The peak of the mountain is also a skiing resort in winter!
- Yubiso, Yubukiyama-Kokuyurin, Minakami-machi, Tone-gun, Gunma, Japan
Take the bus at Tanigawadake Ropeway
Transit to another bus at Minakami Station
Shougakkou-Shita bus stop
5 mins walk
Delightful meal of “Kamameshi” in Sansui
The famous local cuisine “Sansui” serves “Kamameshi” with chicken and maitake mushroom. The maitake mushroom used in the dish is “Sukuyoka”, a very rare mushroom found in Gunma prefecture. Open the cover of the iron pot and the smell will definitely amaze you. Use the rice paddle to mix the rice, then put the cover back on for a few minutes before you eat. The side dishes are also carefully thought through and cooked.
- 757-1 Royal Plaza Yubara, Minakami-machi, Tone-gun, Gunma, Japan
- Weekday 11:00~15:30 (L.O.)
Weekend & Weekdays Public Holiday 11:00~15:30 (L.O.)
Closed: Tue (except for national holidays)
Take a walk around the Suwakyo Gorges
Due to the breathtaking scenes of the gorges, this place was chosen and known as “The Best 500 promenade of Japan”. Take a walk though the promenade, as the landscape actually changes each season. A variety of flowers bloom along the promenade. On a sunny day, look back, you will see a chain of gorgeous mountains behind you.
At “Mizukikoukan” near the starting point of Suwakyo promenade. You will be able to find a very popular souvenir. The Japanese silky sweet bun (Manju) of “Marusu-seika”. The specially mashed red bean paste inside the bun is very tasty. There are also other flavors available besides the common black sugar flavor.
- 1680-4 Yubara, Minakami-machi, Tone-gun, Gunma, Japan
Take the bus at Shougakkou-Shita bus stop
Departure from Jomo-Kogen Station (Joetsu Shinkansen)
Arrival at Tokyo Station