The onsen visits were one of our highlights in Japan. Especially after a long train ride or many hours of sightseeing, there is nothing better than to lie in a pool of hot water and daydream for a while. Beppu is Japan’s most famous onsen town. Therefore, the variety of onsen in Beppu is huge and it can be difficult to decide which is the best onsen in Beppu for your visit.
I made a list with the ones we liked best or which I thought would be most worth to visit because of their history or atmosphere. Some of them are very simple and you can’t expect to get free goodies. Therefore best bring your own towel, hair brush, and shampoo to the onsen.
* I didn’t take the pictures with the asteriks myself because I wasn’t allowed to take pictures inside the Onsen in Beppu. They are all from the visit-oita website.
The best Onsen in Beppu
#1 Hoyo land (mud bath onsen)
Hoyo Land is a public mud bath located in the Myoban area. At first it’s a bit gross to enther a pool filled with mud but once you get used to it, it’s quite a fun sensation. On top oft hat it’s supposed to be very good for your skin. Contrairly to the other onsen, here it’s forbidden to wash yourself with soap. So, simply rinse your body off at the shower before and after the bath, in order not to destroy the positive effect the mud has on your skin. There is a separate indoor pool for men and women and a big outdoor pool which divedes men and women by a thin bamboo fence but you can still talk to your partner on the other side. The area out oft he mud pool is not shaded from the view of the other sex in case that bothers you.
Opening hours: 9 am to 8 pm, Cost: 1050 Yen, Time needed: 30min
#2 Takegawara Onsen
Takegawara Onsen is the oldest onsen in Beppu and therefore an interesting sight. The bath tubs are small and filled with very hot water. Sitting in there you will feel like a local. Takegawara was located only 6 min on foot from our lovely guesthouse (Cabosu House Beppu Hamayu).
Opening hours:6.30 am to10.30 pm, Entrance fee: 100 Yen, time needed: as long as you can manage to stay in the hot water
They also offer sand baths for 1000 Yen, where they bury you in hot sand. The same experience you can have at the beach at Onsen #4.
#3 Yuya Ebisu
Yuya Ebisu is one of the more exclusive onsen in Beppu. Located in the Myoban area, you find various interesting facilities such as an infrared sauna and a healing bar. Further, there is a nice wooden jacuzzi.
Opening hours: 10 am to 11 pm, Cost: 1000 Yen, but 2000 Yen if you book extra treatments, middle school students and younger are 500 Yen, time required: 40 min
#4 Beppu Kaihin Sand Bath
This is the only sand bath in Beppu that is actually located on the beach and from where you have a nice view out on the ocean. You can find it right next to Beppu Ferry Terminal. Women will bury you in warm sand. More than 10 people can take a sand bath at the same time.
Opening hours: 9 am to 4 pm, in summer 8.30 am to 5 pm, cost: 1000 Yen, time required: 15 min
#5 Kannawa Steam Bath
Kannawa Steam Bath started its history in the Kamakura era and has been attracting customers for hundreds of years. The bath is actually more like a sauna than a pool. It’s heated up with onsen steam and filled with special herbs on which you can lie down and relax. In addition, in front of the building, you can find free foot steam baths.
Opening hours: 6.30 am to 8 pm, closed on the 4th Wednesday oft he month, cost: 500 Yen, time required: 30 min
#6 Kaimonji Onsen
This is a simple public bath. It was rebuilt in 2010 and therefore it’s fairly new and clean. If you are just looking for a quick and cheap soak, this is your place to go to. It’s located near Cabosu House Beppu Hamayu.
Opening hours: 6.30 am to 10.30 pm, cost: 100 Yen, time required: 5min
Yunosato Onsen is located in the Myoban area. It is famous fort he yunohana huts, where hot spring salts are produced. Further, the onsen water has a mysterious color of milky white. While soaking in this onsen, you can enjoy a wonderful view from the hill. For couples and families it is possible to rent private baths.
Opening hours: 9 am to 8 pm (summer 9 pm), cost: 600 Yen, time required: 40 min
Termas is recommended because it’s located right on the beach and you are supposed to have a view of the ocean. However, the outdoor pools are too low to see above the wall and therefore you can’t see the ocean. Further, the sauna looked moldy and old and therefore I didn’t trust the cleanliness of the baths too much. After 5min in the outdoor pool, I felt itchy everywhere and had a slight rash on my legs (the others were fine). Indoors I was fine but we have seen much more special and nicer onsen.
Opening hours: 10 am to 10 pm (last entry 9 pm), cost: 500 Yen, time required: 20 min
What is your favorite Onsen in Beppu? What was the best Onsen you visited in Japan?
Also, read the post about how to best visit the Beppu Hells. It’s amazing to see these colorful ponds with your own eyes.