In the old days, Yamaga City, Kumamoto Prefecture, flourished as a post town along the Buzen Highway that connects Kumamoto Prefecture and Fukuoka Prefecture. Not only remains the historic cityscape and cultural assets, but it is also an attractive hot spring resort.
Yamaga is easily accessible in about 40 minutes by bus from Kumamoto city center, making it perfect for a day trip from Kumamoto city.
Speaking of sightseeing in Yamaga, first of all, Yachiyoza is a playhouse that is an important cultural property of the country. Although it was built in the Meiji era while incorporating Western architectural techniques, it has a unique atmosphere that retains the atmosphere of the Edo period.
There may be stage performances due to an active playhouse, but you can visit the inside on days when there are no performances. A colorful advertising picture, a ceiling with a chandelier, and a tatami mat seat. You can visit the stage with a rotating device and the abyss with a guide.
The famous “Sakurayu” communal bath in Yamaga Onsen that retains the atmosphere of Edo is also a famous spot. “Sakurayu” started with “Ochaya”, a resting place established by the Higo owner, Tadatoshi Hosokawa. It is a historical hot spring that is said to have taken Musashi MIYAMOTO (who was a sword master and a Zen artist during the beginning of the Edo period) bathing.
The retro and stately building was demolished and rebuilt in the 1960s. Let’s take a bath with regulars who come from the neighborhood every day. Please keep in mind that you will need to bring or purchase soap and towels in the traditional bathing area.
There is also a “Foot Bath” that can be used for free, opposite “Sakurayu”. If you don’t have enough time to enter the hot spring with Sakurayu, try it out with foot bath alone.
It is an alkaline simple spring and the water temperature is slightly warm at 39.4 degrees. Perfect for resting tired feet walking. It is not too hot and even children can use it with peace of mind, so it is also popular with families. With a roof, you can enjoy it regardless of the weather. There is also a drinking fountain near the footbath.
You can enjoy a variety of historical buildings, cityscapes, hot springs, and gourmet food. Yamaga has many other highlights. If you have plenty of time and want to repeat it, please stay at Yamaga Onsen Ryokan and enjoy it.
Yamaga is surrounded by deep mountains at the prefecture border with Fukuoka prefecture and the plains spreading in the Kikuchi River basin. In the Edo period, this area prospered as a post town of the daimyo’s alternate-year residence in Edo of the Hosokawa clan, and the surroundings of the time still remain in the current cityscape. The hot spring in this area boasts the largest amount of springs in the prefecture and lots of accommodation facilities have made use of the characteristics of each hot spring area.
Yamaga has many valuable historical sites and ambience. In addition, there are six hot spring town in this area, and there are more than 60 hot spring facilities etc. making use of the features of each hot spring area. It is a popular hot spring resort where many hot spring customers come from outside the prefecture. It is a popular tourist destination with many people gathering, including the playhouse “Yachiyoza” selected as a nationally designated important cultural property and the largest scale “Yamaga Lantern Festival” in the area.
“Sakura-yu Hot Spring” which was founded in the Edo era has been reborn as “Citizen’s Hot Spring” in a major renovation that took place in 1870. In addition, it was rebuilt as a former figure since the Meiji era by traditional construction method in 2011. Buildings that are dignified, such as the entrance with Tang gable, make you feel a long history.
The bath is simple construction of only the inside bath and the washing place. Alkaline simple hot spring is like soft and moist, it looks as if it is immersed in lotion. It is a very good hot water that will make your skin swell. The inner bath divides the temperature zone by partitioning the wide bathtub.
Baths used by Hosokawa lord owners are reproduced in the facility, and you can also visit.
“Yachiyoza” is a playhouse founded by people in the town in 1873. Building of wooden two stories leaves the building of the Kabuki Theater of the Edo period, such as Masu-seki (box seating), Sajiki-seki (elevated wooden seats on both sides of an auditorium for expensive tickets), turning stage, lift and so on. Many actors are still presenting the stage. Yachiyoza can visit and the guide will introduce the highlight, such as the backside of the stage.
|Name:||Yamaga Onsen Hot Spring Resort|
|Address:||Munakatadori Yamaga, Kumamoto 861-0518 Japan|
|Access:||JR Kyushu-shinkansen “Shintamana-eki Station” (30 minutes by car)|
|Tel:||(+81) 968-43-2952 (Yamaga Onsen Tourism Association)|
|Price/Charge:||Sakura-yu Hot Spring|
300 yen (Adult)
150 yen (Elementary School Children or Under)
Please refer the official web page.
Yachiyoza Hall and Yumekogura (Archives Center)
630 yen (Adult)
310 yen (Junior High School Students or Under)
Please refer the official web page.
|Official site:||Yamaga Onsen Tourism Association|