Home To Many Famous Onsen - Yamanashi Prefecture

Hot springs in Yamanashi Prefecture offer much variety in terms of the water temperature, yield, and mineral quality. Also, with springs situated at altitudes extending from 100 m 1400 m above sea level, visitors can enjoy a range of different springs.

 Yamanashi’s hot springs are surrounded by scenery—mountains and forests, valleys and rivers—that varies enormously. The wonderful views from the springs and their different look in each of the four seasons is also another great attraction.

1. Isawa Hot Springs

Yamanashi Prefecture is well known for its fruits and also is home to Isawa Onsen. In spring the land is clothed in pink and the soft scent of peach blossoms is in the air. Though Isawa Onsen’s history is not so long, it is the largest hot spring resort in Yamanashi Prefecture and famous throughout the country.

In 1961, when people dug in a vineyard here, 60-degree-temperature water gushed forth. They threw the water away, diverting it to a nearby river, and children who played in the river were pleased because the water was warm and comfortable. Seeing that, people thought only throwing away this hot water was a waste and made a pool, which became a kind of openair bath and drew a lot of attention. Since that humble start, Isawa Onsen has been developing and now more than 3.5 million tourists visit this area annually.

How to Access : 90 minutes from Shinjuku Station to Isawa Onsen Station on the JR Chuo Line.

2. Hottarakashi Onsen

This popular day spa offers views looking down onto the Kofu Basin and expansive views of Mt. Fuji standing right before one’s eyes. At night, visitors can enjoy night views and a sky studded with stars. The baths open an hour before dawn, so wonderful dawn views can also be enjoyed. 

Hottarakashi has two facilities: “Kotchi no yu,” which allows for front-on views of Mt. Fuji from an open-air tub with logs arranged on the edges, and “Atchi no yu,” a larger open-air bath, where night views of the Kofu Basin can be enjoyed to the utmost. Distinctive features of this hot spring are its high position, waters that promise smooth and beautiful skin, and temperatures warm enough that will not get a chill after your bath.

3. Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan

Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan is a hot spring hotel in Hayakawa, Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan. Founded in 705 AD by Fujiwara Mahito, it is the oldest hotel and one of the oldest companies in operation. In 2011, the hotel was officially recognised by the Guinness World Records as the oldest hotel in the world. It has been continuously operated by 52 generations of the same family (including adopted heirs) for over 1,300 years.

The Keiunkan lies at the foot of the Akaishi Mountains. Since its foundation the hotel has had all its hot water sourced directly from the local Hakuho Springs. The hotel was last renovated in 1997 and has 37 rooms.

Things You Must Visit At Yamanashi

Kachi Kachi Ropeway

The Kachi Kachi Ropeway ascends 400 meters from the eastern shore of Lake Kawaguchiko to an observation deck near the peak of Mount Tenjo. From the observation deck, which sits more than 1000 meters above sea level, there are panoramic views of the lake below and of Mount Fuji.

While most visitors take a round trip on the ropeway, there is also a hiking trail from the observation deck down the forested mountain slope which takes about 30 minutes to descend. A different trail leads from the observation point 300 meters uphill to a small shrine at the summit of Mount Tenjo, from there the trail continues on to Mount Mitsutoge, a popular day hike with good views of Mount Fuji.

Mt. Fuji 5th Station

Also known as Yoshidaguchi 5th Station or Kawaguchiko 5th Station, Mt. Fuji 5th Station is positioned around the halfway point of the Yoshida trail. This trail leads from the Fujiyoshida Sengen Shrine at the bottom of the mountain to the summit of Mount Fuji. One of four 5th stations located on Mount Fuji, this station is perhaps the most popular. It can be easily accessed by trains and buses from Tokyo. 

The station is reached by using the Subaru Line, which itself is a popular sightseeing spot all year-round. The line is a toll road which travels up one of the lower northern slopes of Mount Fuji. The road begins in the town of Kawaguchiko, and shuttle buses take climbers from the town to the 5th station. The station itself is located at 2300 meters above sea level, meaning there are beautiful views of the area. 

Behind the shopping area is Komitake Shrine, which has an observation point, giving unobstructed views of Lake Yamanaka and Fujiyoshida City. The station is also the last place to buy food and hiking supplies before you ascend the mountain, where they become more expensive as you climb.