Shin-Hotaka-onsen Hot Spring
A hot spring resort on a plateau surrounded by the Northern Alps
The Oku-Hida Spa Village has been designated as a National Hot Spring Health Resort by the Japanese government (Ministry of the Environment), as its beautiful natural environment had been protected and it was ideal for convalescent purposes. Shin-Hotaka Hot Spring is the most distant of this cluster of hot springs. An abundant source of warm water wells up in the invigorating surroundings of this plateau nestled amid the towering peaks of the Northern Alps, and has soothed away the exhaustion of many a mountain climber since ancient times. Rather than being a secluded hot spring, it is more like a resort, with a row of hotels and guest houses standing amid a forest of white birch. The hotels each have outdoor baths to which a variety of original touches have been added, and you can enjoy spectacular views of Mount Yari and Mount Kasa, among other peaks of the Northern Alps, as you bathe.
There are also many public baths. Shin-Hotakanoyu features a bath as big as a swimming pool, surrounded by enormous rocks. The bottom is covered in small pebbles, which massage the pressure points on the soles of your feet. However, it is closed from November until late April, as the temperature falls considerably during winter.
The main attraction for tourists visiting Shin-Hotaka is the Shinhotaka Ropeway, which is the second-largest aerial tramway in the world. Using the only double-decker cabins in Japan, this aerial tramway takes you from the base station close to the hot spring district, all the way up into the clouds, to a point 2,156 m above sea level.
Address: Okuhida-Onsen-Go, Takayama City, Gifu
Phone: 0578-89-2458 (General information Center, Oku-hida Onsen-Go)
Directions: (Train) 1 hour and 30 minutes from Takayama Station on the JR Takayama Line (2 hours 20 minutes from Nagoya) by Nobi Bus; alight at Shin-Hodaka Onsen. (Car) 1 hour from Takayama Interchange on the Chubu-Jukan Highway.