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Japanese hotel than. Onsen: What’s the Difference?


Japan is not only the most popular tourist destination, but also the birthplace of many traditional accommodation and leisure methods. Two ways to relax in Japan are the ryokan and onsen that are often found around the country’s many hot springs.


It is often difficult to distinguish between a ryokan and an onsen. They usually appear in the same places and are usually related to each other in the way they operate. Here’s some information to figure out what exactly each place offers and how they differ.

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Japanese hotel

A ryokan is a type of Japanese-style hotel found throughout Japan. They are especially prevalent in spa resorts. They offer visitors the opportunity to experience the traditional Japanese way of life. They are more than just a place to sleep. They are as close to the real past as many travelers are. They offer tatami rooms, futon beds, Japanese baths and local dishes. They are popular with both local and foreign tourists.

Not all ryokans are created equal. They come in several different sizes, costs and styles. Some family-run establishments are usually small, with only a few rooms. There are large hotels that are more like hotels, with complete facilities and hundreds of rooms. They can even vary widely in terms of cost.There are budget versions and expensive versions for those with a little extra spending

Ryokan costs vary, but travelers can expect to pay 15,000 yen ($149) to 25,000 yen ($186) per person per night. Even the budget versions aren’t necessarily cheap, but there are plenty of reasons to choose to indulge in them. First, they are classic experiences. Second, an elaborate dinner and traditional breakfast are included in the fee. Meals are usually kaiseki and often feature local and seasonal specialities.

They really emphasize traditional style and ambience. This can make them a bit intimidating for beginners, as they can seem a bit rigid. But it is important to note that their purpose is to relax, and all procedures and etiquette are designed to help travelers relax.

  • average cost – JPY 15,000 (USD 149) and JPY 25,000 (USD 186) per person per night
  • meal – Includes dinner and breakfast.
  • slippers – Visitors are required to leave shoes at the door and wear slippers.

Related: 9 Awesome Things to Do in Hakone, Japan

Japanese hot spring

Onsen are another example of traditional Japanese accommodations that are available throughout Japan. They are Japanese hot springs and bathing facilities and the traditional inns that surround them. They are ubiquitous in Japan’s volcanically active environment and can be found on all major islands.

There are several types of hot springs. Some offer indoor baths, while others offer outdoor baths. Some of these are openly run by local municipalities, while others are privately run. Privately run onsen are usually part of a hotel, ryokan or bed and breakfast.

Hot springs are also easy to find, as they are usually marked on maps with the symbol ♨ or the Chinese character 汤 (yu, meaning “hot water”). Sometimes travelers may see the character ゆ(yu), which is more basic and easier for younger children to understand,

More traditional onsens are located outdoors, though recently inns have added indoor bathing facilities to their selection. In more modern times, the number of traditional public baths has dwindled as they became more common in people’s homes. However, there are still plenty of hot springs that cater to travelers.

  • entrance fee – Typically, usually between 400 and 800 yen (US dollars)
  • bath towel – 300 to 500 yen (US dollars)
  • recommend – Do not bathe again immediately after leaving the hot spring.

RELATED: 10 Reasons to Visit Japan’s Kansai Region Instead of Tokyo

what is the difference?

For travelers who don’t know the difference yet, it comes down to what their actual purpose is. Yes, they often appear in similar positions, and may even appear together, but they do very specific things. A ryokan is a traditional form of accommodation, similar in many ways to a hotel, that provides a place to rest and eat traditionally. They are often found around hot springs, but not all of them. Hot springs are hot springs and facilities around hot springs. Onsen, by definition, are baths that use natural hot water from geothermal springs.

Both ryokan and onsen are important traditional aspects of Japanese culture. Each of them offers visitors something different, but also something to enjoy at the same time. In fact, visitors to Japan should definitely enjoy the luxury of a ryokan while soaking in the hot spring water of an onsen.



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