Want to experience onsen together with your partner of the opposite gender with some privacy?
A Japan onsen for couples is the answer!
Generally, an onsen is segregated to male and female, as such you and your partner of the opposite gender will be separated at the onsen.
Thus, the only way to enjoy the onsen together is to find an onsen for couples in Japan.
What you need to look for is a private onsen called kashikiri buro (private onsen) or kazoku buro (family onsen) that provides the privacy and comfort of onsen in Japan.
These private onsens are normally operated by Ryokan and it is quite exclusive and sometimes requires reservations.
21 Best Onsens For Couples:
1. Hakone Yuryo
7. Bessho Sasa
12. Bourou Noguchi Noboribetsu
13. Dogo Miyu
15. Asaba Ryokan
16. Ryokan Sennari
18. The Lake Suite Ko No Sumika
19. Otaru Korakuen
20. Nishimuraya Hotel Shogetutei
Based on this article, the people have voted that the following are the best onsen town in Japan or rather the top onsen in Japan:
1. Kusatsu in the Gunma Prefecture;
2. Hakone in the Kanagawa Prefecture;
3. Noboribetsu in the Hokkaido Prefecture; and
4. Dōgo in the Ehime Prefecture.
With that we have listed down the 21 best onsen for couples in Japan and here’s an ultimate Japan onsen guide if this is your first time experiencing onsen in Japan.
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1. Hakone Yuryo (Hakone Onsen, Kanagawa Prefecture)
Hakone is an onsen town near Tokyo where it only takes about 90 minutes by train from Tokyo.
It’s an ideal place for a day trip from Tokyo to experience an onsen with your loved one.
Hakone has been known as one of the famous onsen in Japan.
Hakone Yuryo is a countryside onsen resort with a nice forest view and an indoor and outdoor onsen.
It is suitable for a day trip with your loved ones for a romantic evening together enjoying the view of the forest within the confinement of your private onsen, making it the perfect Hakone private onsen for couples in Japan.
- They have 19 private onsen available for reservation up to one month in advance, strictly via telephone (+81-460-85-8411) only.
- Each private onsen is available for 120 minutes and a further extension of 30 minutes.
- On top of that, you can have a wonderful dinner at their restaurant or use their other facilities such as the relaxation room, and traditional sauna with your loved ones.
Price: The price for the private onsen for couples ranges from JPY8,600 (USD67) to JPY13,600 (USD106), depending on the type of rooms and size you are taking.
How to get there: You can get to Hakone Yuryo by taking the Odakyu Limited Express “Romancecar” from Shinjuku station to Hakone – Yumoto station which takes about 85 minutes.
There is a free shuttle bus from the Hakone – Yumoto station to Hakone Yuryo which takes about 3 minutes.
2. Hakone Pax Yoshino (Hakone Onsen, Kanagawa Prefecture)
Hakone Pax Yoshino is just a 12-minute walk from the Hakone Yumoto Station that offers an indoor and outdoor onsen.
However, the private onsen requires reservations strictly upon check-in only as they do not accept any reservations via email or telephone.
- Each session is for no longer than 60 minutes.
- Apart from that, you can enjoy a reflexology session or a karaoke session with your loved ones at the ryokan.
How to get there: You can take the JR Shinkansen from Tokyo Station to Odawara Station which takes about 35 minutes, then another 15 minutes to the Hakone-Yumoto Station via Hakone Tozan Railway, and lastly either by a 5 minutes shuttle bus ride or a 12-minute walk to Hakone Pax Yoshino.
You can also take the Odakyu Limited Express “Romancecar” from Shinjuku station to Hakone – Yumoto station which takes about 1 hour 10 minutes, then either by a 5-minute shuttle bus ride or a 12-minute walk to Hakone Pax Yoshino.
Price: The price for the private onsen is separate from the price of the accommodation rooms at Hakone Pax Yoshino.
The private onsen costs JPY3,000 (USD23) for 60 minutes. As for the rooms, the price ranges from JPY13,200 (USD102) to JPY36,300 (USD282) per night per guest.
You can book Hakone Pax Yoshino here or here
3. Ryokan Hakone Ginyu (Hakone Onsen, Kanagawa Prefecture)
If you are looking for the perfect private onsen for couples in Tokyo, this ryokan is the nearest spot from Tokyo that you can try, which has the best mountain view in Hakone.
Every guest room in this ryokan has its private onsen, thus making it the best onsen for couples in Japan with the grand mountain view.
However, if you are not looking to get a guest room, you can enjoy their Spa and use their private onsen afterward, reservation for the private onsen outside of the guest room is required.
How to get there: The fastest way to get there is by taking the JR Shinkansen from Tokyo Station to Odawara Station which takes about 35 minutes, then another 16 minutes to the Miyanoshita Station via the Hakone Tozan Railway, and lastly a 3-minute walk to Hakone Ginyu
Price: The guest room ranges from JPY29,700 (USD230) to JPY53,900 (USD418).
You can book Ryokan Hakone Ginyu here.
4. Ryokan Tokinoniwa (Kusatsu Onsen, Gunma Prefecture)
Kusatsu onsen is one of the top onsens in Japan for couples that you need to visit if given the chance.
It is also known as one of the famous onsen town in Japan, which is well-known for the quality of its spring water.
- All the guest rooms in Ryokan Tokinoniwa have a personal open-air bath with natural hot spring water with an amazing view.
- Alternatively, you can also enjoy a private onsen where no reservations are required.
How to get there: The fastest way to get to this ryokan is by the JR Shinkansen from Tokyo Station to the Karuizawa Station which takes about 1 hour 15 minutes and a 1 hour 20-minute car or bus ride to the Ryokan Tokinoniwa.
If you are planning to drive there, there are parking lots available for free.
Price: The price for the guest rooms ranges from JPY17,000 (USD132) to JPY52,800 (USD409) per night, depending on the style of the room that you get.
You can book Ryokan Tokinoniwa here (only in Japanese) or here.
5. Syoubun (Minakami Onsen, Gunma Prefecture)
This place may not be the easiest to get to but the room and facilities are beautifully decorated with the forest mountain view.
There is also a ski resort nearby.
- Every guest room comes with an open-air hot spring bath, which makes it a great option for those that are looking for an onsen for couples in Japan.
- If you are looking for a hot spring outside the guest room, they have 3 private onsen for you to use without additional charges.
Aside from the onsen, you can also canoe, hike, or even ski during the winters with your loved ones.
How to get there: You need to take the JR Shinkansen from Tokyo Station to Takasaki Station for about 55 minutes, then transfer to Joetsu Line at the Takasaki Station to get to the Minakami Station which takes about 65 minutes and a shuttle bus ride (which required reservation the day before) to Syobun.
Price: The guest room price ranges from JPY21,000 (USD163) to JPY56,100 (USD435) per night which includes breakfast and dinner.
You can book Syoban here (only in Japanese) or here.
6. Kawaguchiko Fufu (Kawaguchi Onsen, Yamanashi Prefecture)
Kawaguchiko Fufu is a luxury modern ryokan that has an amazing view of Mt. Fuji and Lake Kawaguchi.
For those that are looking for a couple onsen Tokyo – Japan , you need to take a short trip to Kawaguchiko Fufu to experience the onsen with Kawaguchiko’s forest as the backdrop.
- Every guest room comes with its own open-air hot spring bath and it is beautifully decorated.
How to get there: Take the JR Chou Line from Shinjuku Station to Otsuki Station which takes about 60 minutes, then another 50 minutes by the Fujikyuko Line to Kawaguchiko Station and a 15-minute taxi ride to the ryokan.
If you ever decide to drive there, they do provide free parking for guests.
Price: Ranges from JPY43,500 (USD338) to JPY167,800 (USD1,303) per night depending on the size of the room.
You can book Kawaguchiko Fufu here or here.
7. Bessho Sasa (Kawaguchi Onsen, Yamanashi Prefecture)
Bessho Sasa is a ryokan within a hotel called Hotel Kaneyamaen that is located on the 4th floor of the hotel.
- Bessho Sasa has an open-air hot spring bath in the guest room with a grand view of Mt Fuji.
- Each guest room at the ryokan comes with breakfast and dinner making it one of the best onsen for couples in Japan as a romantic getaway.
- Also, don’t forget to catch their Taiko Drum show every night.
How to get there: You can get to the ryokan by taking the JR Chou Line from Shinjuku Station to Otsuki Station which takes about 60 minutes, then another 45 minutes by the Fujikyuko Line to Fujisan Station and there is a complimentary shuttle bus services from the Fujisan Station to the Bessho Sasa (upon request).
Price: The guest room price ranges from JPY41,800 (USD324) to JPY72,100 (USD560) per night.
You can book Bessho Sasa here.
8. Hotel Kitanoya (Amanohashidate Onsen, Kyoto Prefecture)
Hotel Kitanoya is located on the top of Mt. Monju has an excellent view of the Amanohashidate. With it being close to the Asoumi Sea, the view is magnificent.
- Some guest rooms come with an open-air hot spring bath so that you can enjoy a romantic evening with your partner while soaking in the view.
- Alternatively, you can reserve a private onsen outside the guest room for a fee of JPY3,000 (USD23) for 50 minutes.
How to get there: The hotel is only a 10-minute walk from the Amanohashidate Station.
Price: The guest room ranges from JPY25,000 (USD194) to JPY50,000 (USD388) depending on the room you choose.
You can book Hotel Kitanoya here or here.
9. Dantoukan Kikunoya (Kyoto Lake Biwa Onsen, Shiga Prefecture)
Dantoukan Kikunoya is a traditional ryokan that is right by Lake Biwa. You will get to have a traditional Japanese experience in this ryokan with a beautiful serene view.
- Some guest rooms come with an open-air bath as well as a private onsen for rental.
- It is also day trip friendly and dog friendly. So, it is suitable for your short romantic getaway.
How to get there: Pick-up service is available at the Ogoto-onsen Station upon reservation.
Price: May range from JPY12,700 (USD98) to JPY44,000 (USD340) depending on the room. The private onsen is available for reservation at a fee of JPY5,500 (USD43) for 50 minutes.
You can book Dantoukan Kikunoya here or here.
10. Hanaikada (Amanohashidate Onsen, Kyoto Prefecture)
Hanaikada is one of the must-visit couples onsen Kyoto – Japan for the amazing view of the Togetsukyo Bridge which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is also a convenient location for sightseeing around Kyoto.
Enjoy the private onsen with your partner and finish it off with Kyoto-style kaiseki that is unique and based on locally sourced ingredients.
How to get there: Take the JR Sanin Main Line train from Kyoto Station to Saga-Arashiyama Station and a 5-minute taxi ride to the ryokan. There’s also a free pick-up service from the Saga-Arashiyama Station upon reservation.
Price: It ranges from JPY20,500 (USD159) to JPY51,700 (USD400) per guest per night. A private onsen can be reserved at a fee of JPY1,500 (USD12) for 40 minutes.
You can book Hanaikada here or here.
11. Noboribetsu Sekisui Tei (Noboribetsu Onsen, Hokkaido)
Noboribetsu onsen is also a famous couples onsen in Japan that has several types of hot springs. Aside from that, Noboribetsu town is not only limited to onsens but also has ski resorts and hiking trails.
Noboribetsu Sekisui Tei is located up on the hill with an incredible view.
- You can enjoy a romantic moment in a private onsen with the natural hot springs for about 50 minutes.
- Thereafter, you can get a relaxing full-body massage with your partner.
How to get there: One of the ways to get to the ryokan is by the shuttle bus from New Chitose Airport on a reservation basis. There are other ways to get to the ryokan which are explained here.
Price: It ranges from JPY8,300 (USD64) to JPY30,800 (USD238) per guest per night.
You can book Noboribetsu Sekisui Tei here or here.
12. Bourou Noguchi Noboribetsu (Noboribetsu Onsen, Hokkaido)
Bourou Noguchi Noboribetsu is an adult-only ryokan that is located in the countryside. It is a slightly modern ryokan with an updated interior.
- Each guest room has its private onsen with a view of nature which is beautiful during all four seasons. Have a romantic evening with your partner while soaking in the mountain view.
- You can try a Korean-style hot spring called “ganbanyoku” for an entirely new experience.
How to get there: They provide a free bus shuttle from the JR Sapporo Station and the New Chitose Airport (online reservation needed), there are other ways to get to the ryokan as stated here.
Price: The ryokan is priced between JPY32,500 (USD251) to JPY100,000 (USD774) per guest per night.
You can book Bourou Noguchi Noboribetsu here or here.
13. Dogo Miyu (Dōgo Onsen, Ehime Prefecture)
Dōgo Onsen is a famous onsen in Japan with 3,000 years of history and it is recorded as the oldest onsen in Japan. Dōgo is located on Shikoku Island which has a huge castle-like bathhouse and abundant ryokan.
Dogo Miyu is a modern ryokan with locally sourced furniture that has individual open-air hot spring baths in each guest room to be enjoyed with a view of the Matsuyama Castle. You can enjoy the couple onsen in the comforts of your room.
How to get there: One of the ways to get to this ryokan is by bus from Matsuyama Airport to Dogo Onsen Station and a 5 minutes walk to the ryokan.
Price: JPY40,000 (USD309) to JPY100,000 (USD774) per night depending on the size of the room.
You can book Dogo Miyu here (only in Japanese) or here.
14. Gyokusui (Atagawa Onsen, Shizouka Prefecture)
Gyokusuis guest rooms have elegant and zen rooms that have bamboo grass around their own open-air hot spring baths. You can enjoy the private onsen for couples or even with a group of friends.
Enjoy the romantic and calming onsen to reset your mind, body and soul for the week to come. Further, you can enjoy the private onsen under the starry night skies with your loved ones.
Otherwise, you can book a private onsen out of the guest rooms for free to get a different view for about 50 minutes each session.
How to get there: You can get to the ryokan by 2 hours and 15 minutes JR Limited Express train ride from Tokyo Station to Izu-Atagawa Station.
Price: It starts from anywhere between JPY24,200 (USD187) to JPY97,900 (USD757) per guest per night.
You can book here (only in Japanese) or here.
15. Asaba Ryokan (Shuzenji Onsen, Shizuoka Prefecture)
Asaba Ryokan is a famous couples onsen in Japan that has a long history of 335 years. Surrounded by nature with bamboo bushes around it that provide a sense of peacefulness.
Each guest room in this ryokan comes with either an open-air hot spring bath or an indoor hot spring bath for your enjoyment. Have a romantic time together while enjoying the breeze through the bamboo bushes that provide serenity to your day.
Aside from that, Asaba Ryokan has seasonal Japanese traditional art performances to enjoy during your stay with them.
How to get there: by the Tokaido Shinkansen from Tokyo Station to Mishima Station which takes 1 hour, and change to the Izu-Hakone train to Shuzenji Station which takes about 35 minutes, and a 7-minute taxi ride to Shuzenji onsen. There is another way to access the ryokan that you can find here.
Price: Ranges from JPY74800 (USD578) to JPY154,000 (USD1,190) per night per guest.
You can book Asaba Ryokan here or here.
16. Ryokan Sennari (Beppu Onsen, Oita Prefecture)
Beppu onsen is famous for the 2 active volcanoes around the area that makes Beppu have an abundance of hot springs.
- Ryokan Sennari is just a 4 minutes walk from the Beppu Station.
- It has a traditional Japanese ryokan style that takes you back in time and they only allow 13 years and older to enter the ryokan.
- The ryokan has an open-air private onsen where you can enjoy a romantic night with your partner in the serene environment while watching the starry skies.
How to get there: Take the Airliner Bus from the Oita Airport to Beppu Kitahama which takes about 50 minutes and then 11 minutes walk to Ryokan Sennari.
Price: It is priced between JPY6,000 (USD46) to JPY75,000 (USD580) depending on the room size.
You can book Ryokan Sennari here or here.
17. Zaborin (Niseko Onsen, Hokkaido Prefecture)
Zaborin is a small luxury ryokan with a fantastic nature view, it is more beautiful during the winter. It is an authentic traditional ryokan with a contemporary interior design that does not feel dated.
- All of their guest rooms have indoor and open-air hot spring baths for your enjoyment. You can enjoy the private onsen while appreciating the serenity of nature around the area.
- You and your partner can also indulge in their award-winning kaiseki meal at their restaurant.
How to get there: Take the JR Limited Express train from the New Chitose Airport to the Otaru Station which takes about 1 hour 15 minutes, switch to the JR Hakodate Main line and go to Kutchan Station which takes another 20 minutes, and lastly a 15 minutes shuttle bus ride (booking is required) to the ryokan.
Other routes to the ryokan are stated here
Price: JPY56,900 (USD440) to JPY89,900 (USD695) per guest per night
You can book Zaborin here or here.
18. The Lake Suite Ko No Sumika (Lake Toya Onsen, Hokkaido Prefecture)
This resort is relatively new and has a magnificent view of Lake Toya.
Every room has private open-air hot spring baths on its balconies and every room have an amazing view of Lake Toya. It feels as if you are on the lake itself because of the openness of the bath.
This is one of the recommended best couples onsen in Japan for its serenity and calmness.
How to get there: The resort offers a free airport shuttle service from the New Chitose Airport upon reservation.
Price: The rooms range from JPY55,000 (USD425) to JPY120,000 (USD928) per room depending on the type of room.
19. Otaru Korakuen (Otaru Onsen, Hokkaido Prefecture)
Otaru Korakuen is surrounded by a Japanese-style garden that provides breeze and serenity to the area.
- It’s a traditional Japanese ryokan where some of the guest rooms in the ryokan have their own open-air hot spring baths for your enjoyment.
- On top of that, kaiseki (dinner meal) using the local Shiribeshi seasonal ingredients can be arranged for your guest room upon confirmation
How to get there: Take the JR Limited Express train from New Chitose Airport to Otaru-Chikko Station which takes about 1 hour 10 minutes and then a 10 minutes taxi ride to the ryokan.
There are other routes to the ryokan which are stated here.
Price: It ranges between JPY19,800 (USD153) to JPY50,000 (USD387) per guest per night. The private onsen outside of the guest room is available for reservation at JPY2,200 (USD17) for 45 minutes.
You can book Otaru Korakuen here or here.
20. Nishimuraya Hotel Shogetutei (Kinosaki Onsen, Hyogo Prefecture)
Nishimuraya Hotel Shogetutei is surrounded by a neighboring forest garden of about 160,000 square meters that truly shows the beauty of nature. Each room has its own open-air hot spring bath.
You can have a relaxing onsen with your partner while enjoying the peaceful atmosphere.
How to get there: By taking the JR Limited Express train from Kyoto Station to Kinosaki Onsen Station, and a 5-minute shuttle bus to the hotel (advanced booking is required).
Here are other routes to the ryokan.
Price: Starts from JPY22,000 (USD170) to JPY81,400 (USD630) per guest per night.
You can book Nishimuraya Hotel Shogetutei here or here.
21. Myojinkan (Tobira Onsen, Nagano Prefecture)
Myojinkan is located in the surrounding areas of the Yatsugatake-Chushin Kogen Quasi-National Park. This ryokan has various open-air hot spring baths in the room where you can enjoy the onsen with the natural breeze from the forest, which relaxes you physically and mentally.
How to get there: One way is by taking the JR Limited Express train from Shinjuku Station to Matsumoto Station which takes about 2 hours 30 minutes, and a 40 minutes shuttle bus ride to the ryokan (reservation is required).
Alternatively, there are other routes to the ryokan that are stated here.
Price: Ranging from JPY30,600 (USD237) to JPY214,600 (USD1,660) per guest per night.
You can book Myojinkan here (only in Japanese) or here.
Can Couples Go To Onsen Together?
Usually, couples cannot go to an onsen together. An onsen is usually segregated into genders – male and female. As such, if you and your partner are of a different gender, you may not be able to go to a public onsen together.
There are certain places or ryokan that have private onsen which essentially can be used as onsen for couples. Some ryokan or hotel rooms have an in-room private onsen that you can enjoy together with your partner for a longer period.
Are There Unisex Onsens In Japan?
There are unisex onsens in Japan. However, it is banned in Tokyo. You may not find any unisex onsen in Tokyo but you can find them in the neighboring prefecture close to Tokyo.There are some rules and etiquette that you need to follow if you visit one of them.
How Much Does A Private Onsen Cost In Japan?
A private onsen costs that does not have in-room onsen would cost somewhere between JPY1,500 (USD12) to JPY5,000 (USD39) per session.
A private onsen would usually cost more than a public onsen. It also depends on whether you would like to have the in-room private onsen or just a separate private onsen outside of the guest room.
Usually, a separate private onsen outside of the guest room is free for in-house guests. Each session lasts for somewhere between 60 minutes to 120 minutes depending on the place.
How Much Does It Cost To Soak In An Onsen In Japan?
It costs between JPY200 (USD2) to JPY2,000 (USD15) to soak in an onsen in Japan in a regular onsen.
If you want to have exclusivity in a private ryokan, that would cost between JPY10,000 (USD77) up to JPY100,000 (USD773) depending on the room, services, and place that you prefer.
Once you are all set and have a place in mind to experience onsen, you might want to prepare some items to bring to the onsen, even though some onsen places do provide or rent these items but it is best to have your own:
- Face towel to dry yourself once you are out of the onsen before entering the dressing room.
Be mindful that although you can bring these face towels to the onsen baths, do not let your towel touch the hot spring and contaminate the hot spring.
- Prepare a bath towel to dry yourself after you clean yourself once you get out of the hot spring.
- You might want to bring your toiletries as some do not provide them, or if you have sensitive skin. Use a travel toiletry dispenser for convenience.
A Japanese onsen for couples is not something foreign. You can now enjoy an onsen together with your partner of the opposite gender in the privacy of your own space and enjoy the benefits of the onsen for your body.
Try out some of the recommended onsen for couples in one of the famous onsen in Japan or any of the onsen town near Tokyo on your next trip to Japan, to experience the serenity of the onsen and spend quality time together with your partner to relax your mind, body, and soul.