Awashizenmura Onsen is part of Awashizenmura (安房自然村), a ryokan offering nature activities in the surrounding area. The onsen is primarily for guests of the ryokan, but it also accepts day guests. Awashizenmura is not at all easy to reach without your own transport (I went there by motorbike): 1 hours and 50 minutes on the express train to Tateyama from Tokyo and then 25 minutes by bus to the Awashizenmura stop. But I had high hopes for the onsen from a quick glance at the ryokan’s homepage: an entrance in the hillside with a cave-like tunnel leading to a secluded onsen. What’s not to like?

The hillside entrance

Unfortunately, the onsen facilities were probably the most disappointing I’ve ever been to. The onsen itself consists of just two small baths, with the tub outside only just qualifying as “open-air”—it is set about 15 foot down from the trees above and surrounded by soil and poured concrete. It’s also small, able to fit only 4-5 adults, which is a problem because the inside bath is so hot it is practically unusable (there wasn’t a temperature gauge, but I’m guessing it was around 45-46°C). The few other guests at the onsen would dip inside for maybe 10 seconds before jumping out and heading outside. It took me three attempts to even sit down in the tub.

The entrance for day guests

The outside bath, on the contrary, is lukewarm for a hot spring (maybe 38°C) giving you the worst of both worlds. Couple all that with poor water pressure for the showers and taps (that also run so hot you have to carefully splash yourself with the water), no sauna, steam room, or anything else, and changing rooms that are in dire need of a complete overhaul, and this was definitely not an onsen to which I would ever return.

And the cave? Well, the entrance in the hillside does exist but it is only used by guests of the ryokan. Day visitors take the stairs down from the restaurant area. The only positive thing I can say about the place is that the food was pretty good…

Kaisen-don (海鮮丼) lunch including the entrance fee for the onsen for ¥1,500
Awashizenmura, Mera, Tateyama, Chiba, 294-0234
« Google Maps »
Getting there
1 hours and 50 minutes on the express train to Tateyama from Tokyo and then 25 minutes by bus to the Awashizenmura stop
10am to 9am (last admission 8pm)
Adults ¥700 | Children ¥400. They also have a combined set lunch menu and onsen entrance for ¥1,500. Entrance fee does not include towels, but facetowels can be purchased for ¥220
You May Also Like

Oedo Onsen Monogatari

Tokyo’s most famous onsen is undoubtedly Oedo Onsen Monogatari in Odaiba. Its attraction is a combination of easy access, a multitude of services, and Edo-style amusement arcade designed with young people and foreigners in mind.

Kashitate Mukaizato Hot Spring

Popular with the locals because it is the closest hot spring to the town. The onsen is housed…

Hottarakashi Onsen

Onsen in Yamanashi Prefecture with clear views of Mount Fuji from the outside baths

Kanaya Ryokan

Kanaya Ryokan (金谷旅館) is a 150-year old traditional wooden ryokan located near Rendaiji station just north of the…