Dogo Onsen (道後温泉, Dōgo Onsen) is one of Japan's oldest and most famous hot springs, located to the east of central Matsuyama. The area is popular with tourists for its beautiful bath house and many ryokan. Dogo Onsen has also been a frequent destination for Japan's most prestigious guests, the Imperial Family.
The main attraction in Dogo Onsen is the Dogo Onsen Honkan, a wooden public bathhouse, dating from 1894. The interior of the Honkan is a maze of stairways, passages and rooms, all of which bustle with bathers and staff. It is said to have served as inspiration for Miyazaki's popular animated film "Spirited Away".
The Dogo Onsen area also features many other attractions such as a shopping arcade, the secondary bath house Asuka no Yu, interesting temples and shrines, Dogo Park and a museum about Masaoka Shiki, one of Matsuyama's most celebrated figures. Ryokan guests often walk around the streets in their yukata, giving the onsen town a very pleasant atmosphere.
Hours: 6:00 to 23:00 (entry until 22:30) Admission: 420 yen
The Honkan has two indoor baths: Kami no Yu is the larger public bath and Tama no Yu is the smaller, more noble and less crowded bath. Four different options provide visitors with varying levels of access to the Honkan's facilities, with some price plans including a snack and some green tea. Visitors on the highest price level can view the exclusive bathing facility reserved for visiting emperors.
Hours: 6:00 to 23:00 (entry until 22:30) Admission: from 610 yen
Located about 100 meters away from the Honkan stands Dogo Onsen's newest bath house, Asuka no Yu. Opened in 2017, it is a tastefully designed, modern version of the Honkan, offering similar visiting plans from simply using the bath to the additional use of private rooms and a private bath at additional costs. In between is the pleasant plan that allows visitors to relax and drink tea in a large tatami room on the second floor after taking a bath.
Tsubaki no Yu
Hours: 6:30 to 23:00 (entry until 22:30) Admission: 400 yen
Tsubaki no Yu ("Camellia Bath") is another public bath house that stands just next to Asuka no Yu. Dating from the 1980s, it offers simple, gender-separated indoor baths and the same hot spring water as the Honkan.
Dogo Onsen Station
Built in 1895, Dogo Onsen Station is a nice representation of Meiji Period architecture. It serves as the terminal station to three tram lines. A "Botchan" steam locomotive is often exhibited in front of it.
Botchan Karakuri Clock
Clock chimes every 30-60 minutes from 8:00 to 22:00 Foot bath can be used from 6:00 to 23:00
The Botchan Karakuri Clock near the station plays music on the hour whilst figurines of characters from the famous novel "Botchan" come to life. Next to the clock stands a foot bath free for all to enjoy.
Hours: varies by shop, typically from 9:00 to 22:00 Closed: varies by shop from no closing days to one per month or week, typically Tuesday or Wednesday
An approximately 250 meter long, covered shopping arcade connects Dogo Onsen Honkan with Dogo Onsen Station. The arcade is filled with stores selling local specialties, gifts and snacks. Most shops here open into the night and the shopping street remains lively with strolling visitors and ryokan guests in their yukata.
Shiki Memorial Museum
Hours: 9:00 to 18:00 (until 17:00 from November to April) Admission ends 30 minutes before closing Admission: 400 yen Closed: Most Tuesdays
The Shiki Memorial Museum displays information on one of Matsuyama's most well-known sons, Masaoka Shiki, who introduced modern haiku poetry. Shiki's works of poems and paintings, as well as materials documenting his life are presented.
Dogo Park occupies the former grounds of a castle. Today, only the moats and barely noticeable castle ruins remain, and Dogo Park is better known as a great cherry blossom spot in spring. The spacious park offers wide lawns which are ideal for picnics and barbecue parties.
Ishiteji is Matsuyama's most famous temple, located a short bus ride or 20 minute walk from central Dogo Onsen. On its spacious grounds stand several temple buildings, a three-storied pagoda and a temple gate that is a designated national treasure. Ishiteji also has a cave that leads to a somewhat bizarre secondary temple complex.
Hours: 5:00 to 19:00 (6:00 to 18:00 during winter) Admission: Free
Isaniwa Shrine is located about 200 meters east of Dogo Onsen Station. A tall flight of stairs lead to the shrine, which is constructed of the traditional Hachiman architectural style. In this style, the shrine consists of two halls whose roofs are connected with each other, essentially forming a single building. Sheltered corridors and vermillion pillars and walls are also a feature of this style.
Getting there and around
Dogo Onsen Honkan is a four minute walk from Dogo Onsen Station, the terminus of three tram lines. From JR Matsuyama Station, take tram line 5 (20 minutes, 170 yen). From Matsuyama-shi Station, take tram line 3 (15 minutes, 170 yen).
Open from 2015, Cinnamon Guesthouse Dogo offers female only and mixed dormitory rooms with free WiFi. Dogo Onsen Station is a 4-minute walk away. Each bunk bed in the dormitory rooms come with a curtain to secure your privacy. Bathroom facilities and toilets are shared with other guests. Guests can cook their own meals in the shared kitchen with free-use kitchenware and seasonings. There is also a bar on the ground floor. There is no laundry facility on site, however, guests can take a 10-minute stroll to a nearby public coin launderette. The nearest super market is a 5-minute walk away, while the nearest convenience store is just a 2-minute walk from Cinnamon Guesthouse Dogo. The property is a 40-minute bus ride from Matsuyama Airport and Matsuyama Tourist Port. Matsuyama Castle is a 15-minute train ride away.
Attractively set in the Dogo Hot Spring district of Matsuyama, CHAHARU Hanare Dogo Yumekura is situated 700 metres from Joshin-ji Temple, less than 1 km from Matsuyama Shrine and 1.9 km from Miyukiji Temple. This 4-star ryokan offers a 24-hour front desk and luggage storage space. Private parking can be arranged at an extra charge. At the ryokan rooms come with a private bathroom. CHAHARU Hanare Dogo Yumekura offers a buffet or ? la carte breakfast. Matsuyama castle is 2.4 km from the accommodation, while Okaido Shopping Street is 2.7 km from the property. The nearest airport is Matsuyama Airport, 9 km from CHAHARU Hanare Dogo Yumekura.
3LDK Denchi is situated in Matsuyama, 2.7 km from Matsuyama castle and 3.5 km from Miyukiji Temple. The property is set 1.7 km from Matsuyama Civic Center, 1.8 km from The Museum of Art, Ehime and 1.9 km from Ishitegawa Park. The guest house has family rooms. All guest rooms come with air conditioning, a microwave, a fridge, a kettle, a shower, a hairdryer and a desk. Featuring a private bathroom with a bath and free toiletries, rooms at the guest house also have free WiFi. Popular points of interest near 3LDK Denchi include Botchan Train Museum, Yasaka Temple and Okaido Shopping Street. The nearest airport is Matsuyama Airport, 6 km from the accommodation.
Dormy Inn Matsuyama Natural Hot Spring is set in Matsuyama, within 1.5 km of Ishitegawa Park and 1.9 km of Matsuyama Civic Center. Among the facilities of this property are a restaurant, a 24-hour front desk and luggage storage space, along with free WiFi throughout the property. Local points of interest like Matsuyama castle and The Museum of Art, Ehime are reachable within 2.1 km and 2.1 km, respectively. Guests at the japanese-style business hotel can enjoy a buffet breakfast. The wellness area at Dormy Inn Matsuyama is comprised of a hot spring bath and a sauna. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Yasaka Temple, Okaido Shopping Street and Botchan Train Museum. The nearest airport is Matsuyama Airport, 7 km from Dormy Inn Matsuyama Natural Hot Spring.
DogoYaya features air-conditioned rooms with satellite flat-screen TV in the Dogo Hot Spring district of Matsuyama. Boasting a 24-hour front desk, this property also provides guests with a restaurant. Free WiFi is available and private parking can be arranged at an extra charge. All rooms in the hotel are fitted with a kettle. A ? la carte breakfast is available each morning at DogoYaya. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Joshin-ji Temple, Matsuyama Shrine and Miyukiji Temple. The nearest airport is Matsuyama Airport, 8 km from DogoYaya.
Set in Matsuyama, 600 metres from Joshin-ji Temple, Yamatoya Honten offers accommodation with a restaurant, private parking and a bar. The property is around less than 1 km from Matsuyama Shrine, 1.8 km from Miyukiji Temple and 2.4 km from Matsuyama castle. The ryokan has a hot spring bath, a 24-hour front desk and free WiFi. All guest rooms come with air conditioning, a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, a fridge, a kettle, a bidet, a hairdryer and a wardrobe. All units feature a private bathroom with a bath and free toiletries. An Asian breakfast is available every morning at the ryokan. Okaido Shopping Street is 2.8 km from Yamatoya Honten, while Yasaka Temple is 2.8 km from the property. The nearest airport is Matsuyama Airport, 8 km from the accommodation.
Daiwa Roynet Hotel Matsuyama offers accommodation in Matsuyama near Matsuyama castle and Botchan Train Museum. Among the facilities of this property are a restaurant, a 24-hour front desk and luggage storage space, along with free WiFi. Private parking can be arranged at an extra charge. All guest rooms at the japanese-style business hotel feature air conditioning and a desk. A buffet breakfast is available every morning at Daiwa Roynet Hotel Matsuyama. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Okaido Shopping Street, Yasaka Temple and Ishitegawa Park. The nearest airport is Matsuyama Airport, 8.5 km from Daiwa Roynet Hotel Matsuyama.
Offering Onsen baths (hot-spring bath) and a beauty salon, Hotel Tsubakikan Honkan is a 9-minute walk from the Dogo Onsen station. Guests can enjoy traditional Japanese meals at the dining room. Free Wi-Fi is available at the lobby area. Rooms include a flat-screen TV, a refrigerator, and an electric pot with complimentary green tea. The hotel features a karaoke room, a shop, and a vending machine. The Onsen bath is an outdoor open-air bath, which is available from 05:30 to 09:30 and from 15:00 to 0:00. Guests with a meal plan can enjoy a Japanese and Western style buffet breakfast and dinner on site. Tsubakikan Honkan Hotel is a 10-minute drive from the famous Matsuyama castle, and a 14-minute drive from Bansuiso villa. The Dogo park is a 12 minute walk, and the Ishite Temple is a 25-minute walk away.
Featuring 3-star accommodation, Comfort Hotel Matsuyama is situated in Matsuyama, less than 1 km from Okaido Shopping Street and 900 metres from Matsuyama castle. The 3-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with a private bathroom and free WiFi. Private parking can be arranged at an extra charge. All units in the hotel are equipped with a kettle. The rooms in Comfort Hotel Matsuyama are fitted with a flat-screen TV and a hairdryer. A continental breakfast is available each morning at the accommodation. Speaking Japanese and English, staff will be happy to provide guests with practical advice on the area at the 24-hour front desk. Popular points of interest near Comfort Hotel Matsuyama include The Museum of Art, Ehime, Matsuyama Civic Center and Botchan Train Museum. The nearest airport is Matsuyama Airport, 6 km from the hotel.
Candeo Hotels Matsuyama Okaido is situated in Matsuyama, 2 km from The Museum of Art, Ehime and 2.3 km from Miyukiji Temple. The property is around 1.5 km from Ishitegawa Park, 1.6 km from Matsuyama castle and 1.8 km from Matsuyama Civic Center. The air-conditioned rooms provide a city view and come with a desk and free WiFi. All rooms in the hotel are equipped with a kettle. The rooms in Candeo Hotels Matsuyama Okaido are fitted with a flat-screen TV and a hairdryer. Staff at the accommodation are always available to provide advice at the reception. Popular points of interest near Candeo Hotels Matsuyama Okaido include Okaido Shopping Street, Botchan Train Museum and Yasaka Temple. The nearest airport is Matsuyama Airport, 7 km from the hotel.