A Giant Ryokan in Shirahone Onsen
Trip Start Dec 15, 2009
21Trip End Jan 29, 2010
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We were also a bit worried about the bus trip UP the mountain, and the lonely planet said quote '[some people will find it a reason] to take their happy pills'tiger leaping gorge was scarier.
We stayed at what we thought was a small traditional ryokan, but was actually a behemoth with its own restaurant with private dining rooms.
Our room was ginormous, being more apartment than room with several different rooms, and even a hallway with its own rock garden!
The main point of staying in the Ryokan, is to enjoy its onsens - as the name of the place suggests. There were 3 onsens each for the males and females and one large outdoor mixed onsen. The water in the onsens were milky white, and the outdoor onsens were surrounded by snow. We even sat in the onsen while it was snowing! This is us.
The Ryokan also served a Kaiseki meal, with about 6 courses... we were both SO FULL that we hardly ate anything the next day. We had our own private dining room and the serving person would come in and serve each course. She even fixed up our shoes and lined them up nicely on the way out. So Japanese!
It was a lovely holiday from the holiday - I can see why Japanese people think of Onsen holidays as the ultimate in relaxation!