Kusatsu(草津) is the most popular onsen(hot spring) resort area in Japan. It’s located in Gumma Pref. I went on a trip to onsen the other day.
Sainokawara Onsen & Park (西の河原温泉)
Sainokawara Park(西の河原公園) is a park consists of hot river and sandy riverside. There are large open-air onsen baths called “Sainokawara Onsen”(西の河原温泉) at the far side of the park.
Sainokawara Onsen, Gozanoyu(御座之湯) and O’takinoyu(大滝乃湯) are called “Kusatsu 3 Famous Onsen”(草津三湯). I went these 3 onsen in this trip.
There is a small shrine : “Kusatsu Anamori-inari” (草津穴守稲荷) in the corner of the park. It’s quiet and good atmosphere.
Tsuki-ya Restaurant (月や)
After Sainokawara, I went to a Japanese restaurant, “Tsuki-ya”(月や) for dinner. It’s located near the entrance of Sainokawara park. Pork shabu-shabu and soba were very nice!
Yubatake, or hot spring field is a symbol of Kusatsu. It is a facility for temperature adjustment for onsen water and collecting onsen components. There are many waterways, and hot onsen water flows through them.
At the night, Yubatake was illuminated colorfully. It was very fantastic and photogenic!
Pension Vent Vert (ペンション ヴァンヴェール)
I stayed at Pension Vent Vert. It’s located in the southeast of Kusatsu. From Yubatake, it takes about 15 mins by walk. The pension has 3 small onsen baths with nice view of the forest.
Gozanoyu Onsen (御座之湯)
Gozanoyu is located near Yubatake. It is a wooden building and reproduces a traditional onsen bath. The temperature of the bath is a little high.
O’takinoyu Onsen (大滝乃湯)
O’takinoyu has various onsen bath. There is a very high temperature bath(46℃). Of course there is also lukewarm baths.
There is a “Kusatsu Rusk”(草津ラスク) shop across from Otakinoyu. You can eat Gelatos and Rusks for 500yen.
Public Onsen Baths
There’re many small public onsen baths in Kusatsu town. They are free. If you are used to Japanese onsen, try it!