Yufuin (由布院 as onsen resort, 湯布院 as city district) is a popular hot spring resort, located about ten kilometers inland from Beppu, another, much larger and more developed hot spring resort. Yufuin has a wealth of art museums, cafes and boutiques, and many travelers come to the city just to stroll about town for the day.
Yufuin is located on a flat river basin surrounded by mountains. The most prominent feature of Yufuin's skyline is the twin peaked Mount Yufu, which hovers over the town and serves as the backdrop for many scenic views. The area is rural and shortly after leaving the main walking route, travelers will come across the rice paddies and farm houses that make up a considerable part of the town.
The ryokan and hotels of Yufuin are spread out around town, and not clustered along the main street like in many other resort towns. Instead, the main street is lined with cafes, boutiques and small museums, giving Yufuin an atmosphere more like a trendy shopping area than a traditional onsen town. Nonetheless, there is a large number of lodgings with hot spring baths, some of which open their baths to non-staying guests during daytime.
Another natural landmark of Yufuin besides Mount Yufu is Lake Kinrinko. The small lake is located at the end of the town's main walking route, about a kilometer and a half from the station. Walking paths surround the lake as well as more small shops and cafes, and there is a small shrine located at the lake's southern end. There are also a few public bath houses, one of which, the Shitanyu, can be used by tourists, while the others are for use by local residents only.
Below is a list of some of Yufuin's best baths:
Ratings: best of the best best of Japan outstanding
How to travel between Yufuin and Beppu
Train travel between Beppu and Yufuin requires a transfer of trains at Oita Station. By local trains, the one way journey takes about 80 minutes, costs 1130 yen and is fully covered by the Japan Rail Pass and Kyushu Rail Pass.
By Kyusanko Kyushu Odan Bus
The Kyushu Odan Bus operates between Beppu and Kumamoto, stopping at Yufuin along the way. The one way journey between Beppu and Yufuin takes one hour, costs 1000 yen and is covered by the Sun Q Pass. Click here for timetables and online reservations.
Above fees and schedules are subject to change. For the current yen exchange rate, click here.
Yufuin can be easily explored on foot, and the majority of the town's attractions are located along the 1.5 kilometer long main walking route between Yufuin Station and Lake Kinrinko. Walking the entire route takes between 20 and 30 minutes, not counting any stops along the way.
Yufuin's baths are spread out all across the town, and many of them are difficult to access without private transportation. Bicycles are a convenient method for traveling to the more remote baths or for seeing the town quickly. Rental bicycles can be obtained at Yufuin Station for 250 yen per hour or 1250 yen per day. Taxi and rental car are other options for getting around. Nissan and Ekiren have rental car outlets in Yufuin, while many more outlets are found in nearby Beppu.
Top rated in Yufuin powered by
Yurari RokumyoGuests at Yurari Rokumyo can rent out an entire traditional Japanese-style house with a private hot-spring bath. Free Wi-Fi is available at the public areas. Guests can use the 24-hour shared bath for private use and in-room massages can be request for an extra cost. JR Yufuin Train Station is a 10-minute walk away. The Japanese-style house features 2 connecting rooms with tatami (woven-straw) floors and Japanese futon bedding. Each comes with a flat-screen TV and a seating area with low tables. A microwave, an electric kettle and a private toilet are included as well. The house comes with an open-air hot-spring stone bath. Rokumyo Yurari is a 15-minute walk from Lake Kinrin and a 15-minute drive from Mount Yufu. Oita Airport is a 50-minute drive away. Free parking is available on site and luggage storage is offered at the front desk. No meals are served.View on Booking.com
Yufuin Bettei ItsukiYufuin Bettei Itsuki features a hot spring bath, free Wi-Fi and luxurious contemporary rooms with a balcony, a private hot spring bath and a Japanese-style seating area. Air-conditioned rooms come with a living room with a wooden floor, a sofa and a wall-mounted flat-screen TV. A minibar, toiletries and yukata robes are provided, while the en suite bathroom offers a bathtub, a shower and a toilet. Itsuki Yufuin Bettei offers luggage storage and room service, while facilities include a souvenir shop and free parking. An American breakfast is served at Dining Towakura, which offers a Japanese dinner in the evening. Guests can request to upgrade their dinner to Bungo beef steak course dinner at an additional charge (advance reservation needed). Also, guests staying for two nights or more will be offered a different dinner everyday. The property is a 5-minute drive from Yufuin Station, and a 10-minute walk from Kinrin Lake.View on Booking.com
Ryoso Yufuin YamadayaSet in Yufu, within less than 1 km of Yufuin Motorcycle Museum and 2 km of Kinrinko Lake, Ryoso Yufuin Yamadaya offers accommodation with a garden and free WiFi as well as free private parking for guests who drive. Popular points of interest nearby include Unaki Hime Shrine, Bussanji Temple and Yufuin Showakan. The ryokan features a hot spring bath and luggage storage space. Rooms are complete with a private bathroom, while certain units at the ryokan also have a seating area. Guests at Ryoso Yufuin Yamadaya can enjoy an Asian breakfast. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Norman Rockwell Yufuin Museum, Yufuin Stained Glas Museum and Yufuin Trickart Meikyukan Museum. The nearest airport is Oita Airport, 62 km from Ryoso Yufuin Yamadaya.View on Booking.com
Yufuin Onsen Hinoharu RyokanOffering public indoor/outdoor hot-spring baths, Yufuin Onsen Hinoharu Ryokan features Japanese-style accommodations with a flat-screen satellite TV and Yukata robes. Guests can request for relaxing massages and free WiFi is available throughout the entire property. Prepared with fresh sashimi, wagyu beef and local vegetables, traditional Japanese multi-course meals are served for dinner at the dining room. For breakfast, a Japanese set menu is offered at the dining room. The air-conditioned rooms feature garden views, tatami (woven-straw) floors and Japanese futon bedding. Each comes with a safety deposit box, a fridge and an electric kettle. Some rooms have a private hot-spring bath, while for some bathrooms are shared. Guests at the ryokan are welcomed with green tea and Japanese sweets. They can relax at the large public hot spring baths or take a dip in a cosy privately-reserved bath for free. A free-use internet computer and photocopying services are available as well. Hinoharu Ryokan Yufuin Onsen is a 10-minute walk from Lake Kinrin. JR Yufuin Train Station is a 15-minute walk away. Oita Airport is a 60-minute drive from the property and Fukuoka Airport a 90-minute drive away.View on Booking.com
Yufuin-Sanso WaremokouYufuin-Sanso Waremokou offers large Japanese-style rooms boasting an open-air cypress hot spring bath, sweeping nature and city views and a massage chair. Free Wi-Fi is available at the lobby, and pets are welcome at a charge. Guests at Waremokou Yufuin-Sanso can unwind in indoor and outdoor public hot spring baths, reserve a hot spring for private use, or relax on the terrace. The hotel has a garden, and facilities include drinks vending machines and free parking. The Yufuin-Sanso offers units of 2 en-suite rooms, divided by fusuma sliding doors. Featuring a tatami (woven-straw) floor and traditional futon bedding, they come with a personal attendant. Amenities include an air purifier/humidifier, yukata robes and an LCD TV. The mountain hotel offers a Japanese breakfast and a traditional multi-course kaiseki dinner, both using local ingredients. Delicacies like puffer fish (October-March), Sekisaba and Sekiaji fishes (throughout the year) can be savoured at an additional fee. Meals are served at the dining room, and they can be served in the guestroom at a charge. Yufuin-Sanso Waremokou is a 3-minute free shuttle ride away from JR Yufuin Train Station. Kijima Kogen Park can be visited a 20-minute drive away, and theme park African Safari is a 30-minute drive.View on Booking.com
Yawaragi-no-Sato YadoyaYawaragi-no-Sato Yadoya features 6 hot spring baths, a Japanese restaurant and universal design, only a 2-minute walk from the picturesque Yu-no-Tsubo Kaido (Yu-no-Tsubo Road). If offers Japanese-style and Western rooms, a library and free Wi-Fi at the lobby. Guests at Yadoya Yawaragi-no-Sato can unwind in outdoor and indoor public hot spring baths, or enjoy a private hot spring at extra charge. The hotel has a souvenir shop and free parking. Comfortable rooms feature an interior in neutral colours, and they’re fitted with air conditioning, a TV and a fridge. All rooms have an attached bathroom with free toiletries. The hotel’s restaurant serves a Japanese breakfast and Japanese dinners featuring the local speciality Bungo beef. Yawaragi-no-Sato Yadoya is a 7-minute walk from Kinrin Lake, and a 15-minute walk from JR Yufuin Train Station.View on Booking.com
Yufuin GettouanBoasting chic Japanese-style guestrooms with a private open-air bath, Yufuin Gettouan is a luxurious accommodation, nestled in the tranquil mountains. Lush greenery surround the property, and guests can enjoy the sound of a nearby river and chirping birds. Free WiFi is provided in the lobby. Fitted with a historic charm and the open-air bath, each room is housed in an individual building, and features tatami (woven-straw) flooring and futon bedding. Facilities like a flat-screen TV and a personal safe are provided. Guests can unwind in the room with a yukata robe on, sipping a cup of green tea. Gettouan Ryokan offers large public hot spring baths, both indoors and outdoors. Guests can unwind on the terrace, or go for a stroll in the large garden. JR Yufuin Station is a 7-minute drive, and Yufuin Interchange on the Oita Expressway is within a 10-minute drive. Free parking is available at the property. Delicately prepared Japanese multi-course dinner features local specialities, and it is served in the dining rooms with a relaxing ambience. Hearty Japanese breakfast is also offered there. Guests can sip whiskies and cocktails at Bar Ripe in the evening.View on Booking.com
Yufuin TabinokuraFeaturing a hot spring bath, Yufuin Lodge Tabinokura is located a 15-minute walk away from JR Yufuin Station. Guests can socialise at the communal lounge which features a retro ambience and a vintage d?cor, or make use of the free bike rental and barbecue facilities. Free WiFi access is also available and free luggage storage service is available. Guests can enjoy games at the shared lounge and make use of the kitchen to prepare meals. Staffs can advise guests on the nearby sightseeing areas, while free bicycle rentals are available. The property also offers laundry facilities and free parking. Simply furnished rooms at Tabinokura Yufuin Lodge comes with a TV and a refrigerator. Private bathrooms come complete with a bath or shower, a hairdryer and free toiletries. The hotel is 300 metres from Kyushu Yufuin Folk Village and 500 metres from Kinrinko Lake.View on Booking.com
BaienLocated in Yufu, within 1.2 km of Yufuin Motorcycle Museum and 1.1 km of Kinrinko Lake, Baien provides accommodation with a garden and free WiFi throughout the property as well as free private parking for guests who drive. Each accommodation at the 4-star ryokan has mountain views, and guests can enjoy access to a hot spring bath. The ryokan features family rooms. Each room has air conditioning and a flat-screen TV, and certain rooms at the ryokan have a patio. At Baien each room includes bed linen and towels. An Asian breakfast is available daily at the accommodation. Popular points of interest near Baien include Yufuin Stained Glas Museum, Unaki Hime Shrine and Bussanji Temple. The nearest airport is Oita Airport, 59 km from the ryokan.View on Booking.com
Yufuin Lamp no YadoSet in Yufu, within 1.3 km of Yufuin Motorcycle Museum and 1.8 km of Kinrinko Lake, Yufuin Lamp no Yado offers accommodation with a garden and free WiFi throughout the property as well as free private parking for guests who drive. The property is close to Yufuin Showakan, Yufuin Stained Glas Museum and Yufuin Retro Motor Museum. The ryokan features a hot spring bath and a shared kitchen. All guest rooms in the ryokan are fitted with a kettle. At Yufuin Lamp no Yado all rooms include air conditioning and a flat-screen TV. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Norman Rockwell Yufuin Museum, Yufuin Trickart Meikyukan Museum and Iwashita Collection. The nearest airport is Oita Airport, 60 km from Yufuin Lamp no Yado.View on Booking.com