Yunotsu (温泉津) is a hot spring town in Shimane.
A one-street onsen town with several inns and two beautiful old public bath houses, Yunotsu is a piece of 1920s Japan (think Studio Ghibli) that somehow survived into the 21st century, full of classic wooden buildings and geta clip-clopping on the street.
JR Yunotsu station on the Sanin line is almost a 1-km walk from the main part of town. There is limited bus service to and from the station. If you have a reservation at a ryokan or inn in town, ask them to pick you up.
By car, Yunotsu is on Route 9 about 30 minutes drive from Iwami Ginzan UNESCO World Heritage site in Oda.
As an onsen town, the main activity here is bathing. Although your inn or hotel may have natural hot spring water pumped in, going out to visit other baths is well worthwhile.
- 1 Senyakuto (泉薬湯), 208-1 Yunotsu-chō, ☏ . 05:30-20:20. The first bath developed in the area. It's extremely simple without any of the typical small showers or taps for washing. Just scoop water from the pools. ¥300.
- 2 Yakushiyu (薬師湯), Yunotsu-chō, ☏ . 05:00-21:00. A short walk up the main street. This Meiji-era (1872) building is highly ranked by the Japan Onsen Association. The upstairs is a relaxing place to take a break. ¥300 adults, ¥150 children.
The town is pretty quiet, things close up early, and there are not many options aside from the inns that line the main street. Yunotsu does have a small, but high quality sake brewery called Kaishun (開春) if you want to try what the locals drink. It's widely available in town.
- Chomeiso, A Taisho or early Showa period building - immediately opposite from the main bath-house in town. It has a huge old wooden staircase rising up through the entire central part of the building. Simply gorgeous. On weekdays they charge about ¥7500 per person including two meals.
- 1 [formerly dead link] Asagiya, 1109-17 Yunotsu-chō, ☏ . On the road into town, next to the water on the bend just before the large parking area. Though the room rate only includes breakfast, the restaurant has reasonable prices. Rooms from ¥4200 per person.
- 2 Kiunso (輝雲荘), 202-1 Yunotsu-chō, ☏ . 14 tatami rooms and a lovely facility. Great food. Rooms from ¥8500 per person, including two meals.