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Pictured above: Kozantei Ubuya

It goes without saying that seeing Mt. Fuji at least once is a must. You can visit the iconic (and volcanic) peak on tours or even climb it overnight to watch the sunrise from the top, but one of the most popular ways to enjoy Mt. Fuji is gazing at it from afar, particularly from a relaxing hot spring in the Fuji Five Lakes area for example. Below, find our top recommendations for hot spring-equipped inns and hotels that are ideal for taking in Mt. Fuji's splendor, listed in order of ratings given by JAPANiCAN.com customers.

[ Hotel, Mt. Fuji, Onsen (Hot Springs), Ryokan | published 2012.06.14 | PermaLink ]

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One of the things that makes Hokkaido so popular is its wide open spaces, but this same spaciousness can make getting around a bit tricky. Luckily, many hotels, ryokan, and resorts offer free shuttle service! Check out our recommendations below for some of the most popular hot spring resorts with free shuttle service from Sapporo or New Chitose Airport!

[ Hokkaido, Hotel, Onsen (Hot Springs), Ryokan | published 2012.06.01 | PermaLink ]

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Get the lowdown on some of what Ishikawa Prefecture has to offer!

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Araya Totoan
An open-air bath at The Kayotei overlooking the verdant hills of Yamanaka.

Ishikawa Prefecture lies on the west coast of Japan's main island, a part of Hokuriku in the larger Chubu, or "central", region. It is best-known perhaps for its capital city of Kanazawa, an old castle town rich in history and natural beauty and surprisingly compact in size (a good thing -- more on this later). Kanazawa offers a range of sightseeing destinations and cultural experiences -- not to mention the tasty food -- that will delight history buffs and artisans alike.

Although it is certainly not to be missed, Kanazawa is not all that Ishikawa Prefecture has to offer. Travelers to Japan -- both first-timers and repeat visitors alike -- are sure to know of the country's nationwide passion for hot springs; well, Ishikawa is no exception as home to Kaga Onsen (among others) which consists of four smaller hot spring towns including Awazu, Yamashiro, Yamanaka, and Katayamazu. Those looking for a peaceful getaway with a steamy bath to melt away the weariness of travel need look no further than these small, somewhat secluded hot spring villages tucked amongst the verdant mountains and valleys of Ishikawa. Kaga Onsen's soothing hot springs -- and their purported healing powers -- are said to have been discovered more than 1,000 years ago, and in addition to the famous public bath houses here, visitors can find a number of top-class ryokan to choose from. Continue below for some of our top choices.

[ Onsen (Hot Springs), Ryokan | published 2012.05.02 | PermaLink ]

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201203_yoshiikespring1.jpg This past autumn, we shared some pictures from scenic Yoshiike Ryokan in Hakone-Yumoto featuring the Japanese inn's beautiful grounds (see below).

We got our hands on some from the spring, and -- as you may have guessed -- the garden is just as gorgeous this time of year. From delicate cherry blossoms to the season's fresh greenery, Yoshiike gives guests the opportunity to really feel the new life of spring, as well as the beauty of all four seasons.

[ Autumn, Ryokan, Spring | published 2012.03.06 | PermaLink ]

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