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.
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, 160 yen). From Matsuyama-shi Station, take tram line 3 (15 minutes, 160 yen).
How to get to and around Matsuyama