About Shiobara Onsenkyo
Shiobara Onsenkyo is a collective name for 11 hot springs located along the Hoki River valley in northern Tochigi Prefecture, namely, Syou Onsen, Fukudo Onsen, Shioyu Onsen, Shiokama Onsen, Hata Shita Onsen, Monzen Onsen, Furumachi Onsen, Naka Shiobara Onsen, Kamishiobara Onsen, Shinyu Onsen and Motoyu Onsen, and is therefore widely known as “Eleven Hot Springs of Shiobara. Eleven Hot Springs of Shiobara”.
Each hot spring in Shiobara Onsenkyo has a different quality and therefore has a variety of functions. Yuppo-no-Sato, the largest footbath facility in Japan, is located here, where visitors can enjoy the hot springs with ease. The hot spring town is also very attractive, with a hundred waterfalls, including the Ryuhwa Falls, a three-stage waterfall that cascades down from the rocks, and the Momijidani Bridge, the largest suspension bridge in Honshu, and the Mikaeri Bridge. （There are 12 individual suspension bridges, including the Momijidani Bridge, the largest suspension bridge in Honshu, and the Mikaeri Bridge, as well as special walking trails and other related facilities, so visitors can enjoy the different scenery of the four seasons in the beautiful valley nearby after taking a bath in the hot spring.
How to get there
There are two ways to get to Shiobara Onsen from the Tokyo area: by train or by highway bus.
By train from Tokyo
Take the JR Tohoku Shinkansen from Tokyo Station and get off at Nasushiobara Station. The trip takes 1 hour and 10 minutes and costs 5,390 yen.
Once at Nasu Shiobara Station, take the JR Bus Kanto bound for Shiobara Onsen and get off at the last stop. The trip takes 1 hour and 10 minutes and costs 1,170 yen.
Express Bus from Shinjuku Station
From “Basta Shinjuku” in Shinjuku Station, there is a highway bus bound for Shiobaraonsen on Saturdays and Sundays only. 3 hours and 20 minutes on the JR Bus “Nasu-Shiobara-go” will get you to Shiobara Onsen in about 3 hours and 20 minutes. The fare is 3,400 yen.
The quality of the hot springs in Shiobara Onsen varies from one hot spring to another.
For example, Fukuwatari Onsen, Shiogama Onsen, and Shionoyu Onsen have sulfate spring water, which is effective for burns, cuts, and skin diseases. Nakashiobara Onsen is a simple hot spring that is said to be good for cuts, burns, skin diseases, and women’s diseases.
Some hot springs have more than one quality, so be sure to confirm the quality of the spring at the site.