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Omaki Onsen: Secluded Hot Springs Only Accessible By Boat

With the Hokuriku Shinkansen having extended its service in Spring of 2015, the Hokuriku Region is now attracting a lot of interest. This article is about one of the most secluded of hidden onsen (hot spring) hotels in Toyama prefecture that is only accessible by boat. The hot bath of this secluded onsen hotel has been selected as one of the top 100 hot springs of Japan. It is in such a desolate area that you cannot even get cell phone reception there. It is sure to help you truly get away from your hectic everyday life. Related: Kanazawa, Ishikawa


The History of Omaki Onsen



The Omaki Spa Hotel (Omaki Onsen Kanko Ryokan) stands as if it is adjoined to the Komaki Dam lakefront. The dam is located upstream in the Shogawa River. The history of the hot spring dates back to over 800 years ago, in 1183. A Heike clan warrior, who was defeated in the battle of Tonamiyama, was wandering the area trying to avoid attack from his opponent, the Genji clan. It was by chance that he discovered the hot springs. It is said that this hot spring helped heal the battle wounds of this Heike samurai. So this was the start of the Omaki hot springs. 

After many years, in 1930 when the Komaki Dam was completed, all the neighboring communities sunk in water. However, the only building that remained from this was the Omaki Spa Hotel which stood in between the dam and the cliff. 


Highlights of the Omaki Spa Hotel

Here we introduce some beautiful highlights. Though it is in a secluded area, it is a large scale hotel that is well equipped.

#1 There is excitement even before you arrive


The only way to get to Omaki Spa Hotel is by boat, but the travel there is very mesmerizing. It is a 30 minute ride in a rocking boat and you will hear traditional Japanese songs while you travel. You will also be able to enjoy the magnificent view of the gorges on both sides.

*Access to Omaki Onsen Spa Hotel: Take the Kaetsunou Bus from Tonami Station on the Jyohana Line. 40 minutes on the bus will take you to the Komaki Dam. From there, it’s a 30 minute boat ride (There are 4 boats per day.) Information: Map

#2 A hearth reminiscent of the Showa period


There are two hearths in the facility. There is a charcoal fire built in this hearth twice a day in the morning and evening. You can enjoy Japanese food while sitting around the hearth.

#3 Open air bath while enjoying the magnificent view

Needless to say, the main feature is the hot spring. Since it is located amidst the vast nature, the air quality is exceptional. At times you will even encounter boars and raccoon dogs. You can warm your body from the inside out.

#4 A Japanese style room that overlooks the emerald green waters

Washitsu (Japanese style room)

Wayoshitsu (Japanese and Western style)

Once you’re warm and toasty from the hot springs, it is recommended to enjoy in the washitsu style room fragrant from the tatami mats. Do have some sake or Japanese sweets after your bath.

#5 Delicious Japanese cuisine


With there being so many good things to say about this place, some of you may be thinking that there has to be some kind of catch. Rest assured, even the food has a very good reputation. They serve a countless number of dishes in Japanese style cuisine, using fresh seafood from the Sea of Japan.


Omaki Onsen hot springs: where you can enjoy the luxury of nothingness in the most secluded of secluded areas. Doesn’t it make you want to visit? Please do enjoy this atmosphere which will let you truly relax.


Nearby Tourist Attractions: Gokayama (World Heritage Site)


In the nearby area, there is the historic village of Gokayama. It is only one of 2 locations in Japan that has the Gassho style housing (The other is Shirakawago).

Related: Try the Incredible Experience of a Night’s Stay at the Gokayama World Heritage Site

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