Sunday, September 14, 2014

Hirayu Onsen and Waterfall

After our Camping Trip to Wakayama, our daughter wants to go camping whenever possible. Summer in Japan is very hot and humid, so we had been looking for camping spots with pleasant weather. On our neighbor's recommendation we planned to camp at the Hirayu Onsen Campground. 

The Hirayu campground is close to the Hirayu Onsen, one of the onsen towns forming part of the Oku-Hida Onsengo. The Oku-Hida Onsengo is a group of 5 hot spring villages located in the Japan Alps region of Gifu prefecture. The five villages that form the Oku-Hida Onsen go are Hirayu, Shin Hirayu, Fukuchi, Tochio and Shin Hotaka. The Oku Hida onsen area is close to the city of Takayama, a well preserved city in Gifu Prefecture and Kamikochi-Japan Alps in Nagano prefecture. This makes it a popular travel destination despite limited public transport connectivity. 

The Hirayu Waterfall near the campground is listed among  Japan's 100 best waterfalls. The waterfall has a drop of 64 meter high and 6 meters high. The waterfalls freeze in winter and are illuminated in February. (Entrance fees: Free)
There are restaurants and shops near the Waterfall parking lot. Weary travellers can even soak their feet in a foot bath near the restaurant area. 
A shuttle bus carries passengers from the parking area to the waterfall. (Adult fare : 100 yen). 
Parking is available and the Hirayu Waterfall and Onsen areas.  A ski resort is operational during the winter months in the vicinity.

It is said that the Hirayu Onsen was discovered  by exhausted soldiers from the land of Kai who had attacked in to Hida and reached the Hirayu waterfall.
A white monkey  appeared from behind the waterfalls and led the soldiers to a hot spring in the nearby mountains. This hot spring is the source of the Hirayu Onsen. 
The Hirayu Onsen has gender separated indoor and outdoor baths. Visitors can also use family baths, known as Kazokuburo or Kashikiri onsen, during certain time of the day. Overnight stay is possible at the Hirayu onsen hotel.  

Hirayu onsen is a close to the Hirayu Bus Terminal.
Hirayu is a good base for visiting the Kamikochi area of Japan Alps. Buses ply between Takayama and Hirayu Onsen and also between Hirayu Onsen and Kamikochi bus terminal at regular intervals. Private vehicles are prohibited in Kamikochi and visitors have the option of  private taxi and buses; buses being the cheaper of the two. More about Kamikochi in a separate post- Click Here ! 

Hirayu Campground : Click here

Bus schedules :  
Nouhi Bus Takayama-Hirayu route     
Nouhi Bus Hirayu-Kamikochi route

Area Map : Click here 

Address: 506-1433 Gifu Prefecture, Takayama, Okuhidaonsengo, Hirayu 768-36

Phone: 0578-89-2610 

1 comment:

  1. This is very interesting but the information about the camping ground and bungalow is only in Japanese.