For full itinerary, check out my Japan Trip 2014: 9D8N Hiroshima & Kyushu Area
Come to Japan, you must at least have a night stay in Ryokan, a type of traditional Japanese inn that housed the tatami style rooms with communal baths. And my most 幸せ (shiawase) stay happened here in Aso…
Shinwaen Inn 旅館 親和苑
Located in Uchinomaki, Aso of Kumamoto Perfecture, this is a heart warming ryokan that housed 8 regular guest rooms in the main building and 4 detached houses with private onsen in its premises. From the outlook of the building itself, it looks a bit own and normal. But once you entered into the house, you will definitely be amaze with it. That is the warmest house I came across.
Served with snack and green tea upon checking in; filled in some forms and the lovely lady will explain everything from A to Z and tell you what to do and what not to do. You will be asked a few questions too, on the food preference. We were then leaded to our tatami style room filled with basic facilities. Some of the rooms are equipped with basin for clean up and washing while some are not. But worry not, there are sharing toilet and basin outside the rooms.
Oh there are also sharing private bath if you are not used to having your dip at public hot spring bath.
There were 3 of us staying in a room and each of us paid about Rm 360 for a night stay with unlimited onsen dips, one kaiseiki dinner and breakfast. Price differs by low or peak season as well as weekdays and weekend. It definitely worth every cent spent for staying a night or 2 here.
The post-harvested land.
Toured around to check out the ryokan.
Welcome drinks are available all day, I believe. The ginger water and red shiso (Japanese herbs) water were so yummy.
Souvenir section is available too. You can grab home some of the products they use in their cooking and the toiletries they put in the washroom after you have tried it.
Wish I could bring this home…
Outdoor public bath. They will swap over the male and female bath every day. Just be sure you won’t enter the wrong one. Each public bath has different scenic view.
There is a library too. You can chillax the lazy afternoon over here.
Aside from the stay and bath, I need to highlight their kaiseki dinner. It was the most 幸せ thing in life.
10 course kaiseki dinner and this is just the starter!!! First dish itself was too pretty to be eaten bahhh…
Akaushi 赤牛 Beef
Dessert was heavenly good too!!! Can I have second helpings??? ♥
In season fresh fruit we brought along and nicely sliced by them.
The night, I slept in the most comfortable bed *scream*!!! ♥
The next morning after taking another hot spring dip again, I had the most ♥ 幸せ ♥ breakfast of my life!!! Can I have this… every day??? ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥
Bid goodbye with the lovely family who own this place. They took care of us so well even though it was just a night stay. Worry not for communication barrier. This pretty mummy cum owner can speak fluent English.
Shinwaen Inn 旅館 親和苑
1354 Uchinomaki, Aso,
To get here:
From JR Aso Station, you can take taxi or the bus bound for Uchinomaki. Board off at Onsen Hospital. Shinwaen Inn is about 2 minutes walking distance from the hospital. And there is a clear signage directing you to the Shinwaen Inn.