Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Nishimuraya Honkan Kinosaki Onsen (城崎溫泉 西村屋本館): the ryokan and surroundings

Another year, another crab season.  Did you know the Matsuba Crab is only available from November to March every year?  I had an unforgettable experience at Nishimuraya Honkan in Kinosaki.  It was a splurge but it is worth every penny!  We were definitely spoiled by the food and the hospitality.

Garden view from main entrance at Nishimuraya Honkan

Nishimuraya is the oldest ryokan in the area.  If you want to experience traditional Japanese hospitality, look no further.  Everything oozes with class and elegance here.  You will wish to return year after year just like me.  (I have been wanting to write about my experience but it got indefinitely pushed back due to one thing and another...)  Since pictures speak a thousand words, I will just show you the pictures I took~

From the moment your car arrived,
the ryokan's staff promptly come to assist you with your luggage,
parking, check-in, etc.
Look at how neatly all the slippers were arranged.
You were immediately greeted with this gorgeous view of their garden
We even got lucky with the weather.
It snowed the very next morning!
The whole place felt like it's from a totally different era.
well, it was built a hundred years ago... 
The view from our room.  Fall came a bit late that year.
Could you imagine how gorgeous it would be if the leaves were more red?
I can literally sit here and sip tea all day.
Nishimuraya even got their very own museum,
displaying artifact through time.
The yukata is very traditional in colors.
It does reflect the clientele here.
Our welcome tea and snack

After we enjoyed our welcome snack and changed into our yukata (the staff will help you if you don't know how to wear it), we went out and explored the town.  (FYI: the wooden slippers were really uncomfortable, especially in a rainy day.)  Kinosaki Onsen is a great tourist town in my opinion.  It is connected by JR, has 7 public hot springs, and offers delicious food.  It is bound to make even the pickiest tourist happy :) 

There is even a JR station right at Kinosaki Onsen.
So, you can come here even if you don't know how to drive!
(However, the drive here from Kyoto is beautiful)
One of my favorite of the seven
if you are the first one to enter the onsen,
they will give you a plague to prove it!
a Japanese lady cleaning the street, the proper way!
you could buy local seafood here and bring home,
or cook it yourself in Kinosaki!
look at this!

The custard at this place seemed to be quite famous
it was creamy
can't miss onsen egg at an onsen, right?
love it!
OMG!  they even provide you proper tools to cut your eggs
Guarantees perfection every time
so good!

After all that snacking and relaxation in the onsen, it's time to head back to the hotel for the dinner.  For anyone staying with Nishimuraya Honkan, I hope you are very hungry because dinner was colossal!  (It is probably wise to skip lunch to prep yourself for the meal.)  But just before, look what the ryokan had for us - rice cakes!!!  So wrong but I couldn't resist! 

rice cake is comfort food,
especially when it is cold outside.

Since the post is already getting very long and I really need to give due credit to the dinner here, I am going to split it into separate posts... so stay tuned...

Nishimuraya Honkan Kinosaki Onsen (城崎溫泉 西村屋本館)
469 Kinosakicho Yushima, Toyooka, Hyogo Prefecture 669-6101, Japan
Tel: +81 796-32-2211

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