Staying at Kindaichi Onsen.

Staying at Kindaichi Onsen.
The place to stay to get the best of the local terroir.

Experience the idyllic life with hot springs.

Located in the northeast corner of the city, Kindaichi Onsen is the best possible place to stay to experience the local terroir or Ninohe during your trip. Kindaichi Onsen is the perfect location for a trip to experience the terroir of Ninohe. Located in the northeastern corner of the city by the Mabechi River, it has been in operation since 1626, and was once the designated hot spring retreat for samurai of the Nanbu domain during the Edo period. There are records of these samurai visiting Kindaichi Onsen to undergo hot-spring cure, as the mild water is said to be beneficial for skin diseases.

There were once ten hot springs, but only four remain in use today. Each of the springs are used in the local hot spring inns. The inns welcome guests for a day use of the hot spring baths, so it’s a good idea to go hot spring hopping to compare the water.

Kindaichi Onsen is located in an agricultural area with a long history, and there are rice fields and fruit farms around the hot spring inns today. After passing the entrance gate of the hot spring village, you can see rice fields expanding across the surrounding area. Original Iwate Prefecture rice brands are cultivated here, including Iwatekko and Kiraho which are enjoyed as table rice, and Gin Otome which is used to make the local craft sake, Nanbu Bijin. Pairing freshly cooked rice and local sake with seasonal dishes made with local ingredients is the best way to enjoy the terroir of this region.

There are many exciting sites that are within a short walk from the 6 inns of the hot spring village. For example, there is a farm that welcomes tourists and offers seasonal experiences, such as picking blueberries in summer and apples in fall. Participants can also get a chance to meet the producers.

You can also go on a stroll to discover the local culture and history. Round nodule stones made of fossilized animals and plants can be found by the Mabechi River. Also, within walking distance is a house where Tetsuro Miura, who won the prestigious Akutagawa literary award, spent his time writing his works. There is also a shrine that is famous for worshipping zashikiwarashi which are mythical spirits that take the form of a human child and are known to bring fortune and happiness to those who encounter them. Visiting well-established Nanbu senbei cracker shops is another fun stop to make during your stroll in the neighborhood.

Photo:Sachie Abiko,tarakusa,Ninohe-city

Click here for Google Maps of all spots

List of spots introduced in “#5 Staying at Kindaichi Onsen.”

Ryokufu-so uses water from the Oyu hot spring source. It’s heated with a heat pump in order to retain the water’s natural component which is well-known for being soft on the skin. There are fields expanding around the inn with various crops being cultivated throughout the year.
address:41 Osagawa, Kindaichi, Ninohe-shi, Iwate Prefecture

While there are many hot spring inns at Kindaichi Onsen, this is the only place where you can relax in a bath using the Tama-no-yu hot spring source. The retro interior of the building and the witty remarks by the proprietress-to-be are just some of the appealing aspects of this inn. Obonai prides itself in the quality meals it prepares for the guests to enjoy the blessings of nature in Ninohe. The cafe space and bar are also popular.
address:43-5 Yuda, Kindaichi, Ninohe-shi, Iwate Prefecture

Kitaguni Ryokan was named by Tetsuro Miura who was a winner of the prestigious Akutagawa literary award, and a relative of the inn’s founders. It boasts its magnificent stone bath where you can leisurely stretch out your arms and legs to fully relax. The hot spring water is sourced from Reimei-no-yu.There is an exhibition space with Tetsuro Miura’s works and photos.
address:24-20 Onuma, Kindaichi, Ninohe-shi, Iwate Prefecture

Hotel Kindaichi

The closest hot spring inn to Kindaichi-Onsen Station on the Iwate Ginga Railway Line (IGR). The baths here use water from Kin-ei-no-yu hot spring which is the hottest hot spring source. Slowly passing some time in the bath while gazing at the Mabechi River flowing nearby will surely bring you peace.
address:25 Ogama, Kindaichi, Ninohe-shi, Iwate Prefecture

Ryokan Sen-yo-kan uses water from a hot spring called Reimei-no-yu which is known for its pure quality that's soft on the skin. There are seasonal baths with specialty apples or flower petals. Please contact the inn for meal plans with a day use of the baths.
address:24 Onuma, Kindaichi, Ninohe-shi, Iwate Prefecture

Spa Dome

The baths of Spa Dome use a hot spring source called Reimei-no-yu. This inn operates from early in the morning until late at night. There are various baths and spa facilities available, including denki buro which are Japanese “electric baths,” water baths, and infrared saunas.
Address:53 Yuda, Kindaichi, Ninohe-shi, Iwate Prefecture

The source of Ryokufu-so’s hot spring

This is a site where the Oyu hot spring flows from. Visitors can touch the original source of the bath water used at Ryokufu-so inn. This hot spring source is said to have suddenly appeared in the middle of a rice field. The transparent water has a mildly alkaline pH level and a temperature of around 33.5 degrees Celsius or 92.3 degrees Fahrenheit.
Address:59-14 Yuda, Kindaichi, Ninohe-shi, Iwate Prefecture

Kindaichi Onsen Apple Orchard uses local and organic resources. The use of agrochemicals are kept to the absolute minimum amount required. The varieties include Fuyukoi, Tsugaru, Kio, Beniiwate, Shinano Gold, Jonagold, San Fuji, Orin, etc. The sweet fruit of the apples can only be made in Ninohe’s climate where there is little precipitation and a big temperature difference throughout the day. A harvest festival is held in fall.
address:Nakasato, Yuda, Kindaichi, Ninohe-shi, Iwate Prefecture

Yuttari Yukkuri Yuyu Blueberry Farm

From mid-July to the beginning of August, the farm is open to the public for blueberry picking. The varieties include Rubel, which has a rich sweetness that makes it suitable for making products such as jam, Blueray, which bears large, dark-blue berries, Barkley, which is known to be extra-sweet and perfect to eat raw, Elliot, which has a delicate flavor, and many more. Pick, taste, and compare the different varieties!
address:Osagawa, Kindaichi, Ninohe-shi, Iwate Prefecture

The rice fields at Kindaichi Onsen

Rice fields expand on your left and right when you enter the entrance gate of Kindaichi Onsen. It has been said to be extremely difficult to cultivate rice in Ninohe due to the cold, humid air from the Pacific Coast. However, this has changed with the development of rice varieties that could acclimatize to the local weather. There are various brands of rice cultivated at Kindaichi, including Iwatekko, an original Iwate Prefecture cultivar which is resilient to the cold, Kiraho, a low amylose rice with a soft, chewy texture that lasts even after the rice gets cold, and Gin Otome which is essential for making Nanbu Bijin sake.
address:Oki, Kindaichi, Ninohe-shi, Iwate Prefecture

Fujiwara Senbei Shop

Nanbu senbei crackers made with flour have long been cherished as a meal and a snack by the residents of Ninohe. Baked the traditional way using charcoal, Fujiwara Senbei are made only with flour, sesame seeds, salt, and baking soda. They are made using local ingredients and resources, such as Nanbu flour produced in Iwate Prefecture which has a natural sweetness and rich aroma, and charcoal produced at the base of Mt. Oritsume.
address:64 Yatsuosa, Kindaichi, Ninohe-shi, Iwate Prefecture

Fujiwara Confectionery Shop

Fujiwara Confectionery Shop, established in 1950, makes a naturally sweet syrup made from barley and wheat sprouts, and was once the favorite snack for many of the local children. Barley sprouts contain a high amount of an enzyme called diastase which creates maltose when mixed with carbohydrates. Locals use this syrup to coat Nanbu senbei, as an alternative to sugar when cooking, and as a secret ingredient in pickles. Takaraame is a popular candy made with the handmade malt syrup mixed with soy sauce or Japanese cinnamon. This old-school candy with cute, retro packaging is a must-try.
address:79-4 Arata, Kindaichi, Ninohe-shi, Iwate Prefecture

Kamemaro Shrine

Kindaichi Onsen is well-known as a place that’s home to zashikiwarashi. Zashikiwarashi are mythical spirits that have the appearance of a young child. They have been loved as spirits that bring good fortune to the house they reside in and the people they encounter. Tales of zashikiwarashi spirits have long been passed down in the Nanbu region. Ryokufu-so is famous as the inn where a zashikiwarashi called Kamemaro appears, and there are countless stories of people who were blessed with good fortune after encountering him. Kamemaro Shrine was built in the backyard of Ryokufu-so to worship the generous spirit.
address:41 Osagawa, Kindaichi, Ninohe-shi, Iwate Prefecture

Kindaichi Onsen Yakushi Shrine

After leaving Ryokufu-so, crossing the bridge, and going up Danja-zaka slope, you will reach Onsen Shrine. The strange name of the slope comes from the father of Tetsuro Miura who was an Akutagawa literary award winner. His father’s family name was Danzawa. Not long after Ryokufu-so opened, there was a woman who came for a hot spring cure every day, and it is said that one night, the woman appeared by the bedside of the bathhouse’s owner. The owner believed that the goddess of health, Yakushi-Nyorai, was taking the form of a human to send a message. He built Kindaichi Onsen Yakushi Shrine to worship Yakushi-Nyorai as the goddess of health and cure.From this shrine, you can enjoy the beautiful scenery of the river terrace which includes traditional Japanese houses, inns, and fields.
address:78-2 Yuda, Kindaichi, Ninohe-shi, Iwate Prefecture

The riverside of Mabechi River

Surrounded by mountains reaching over 1,200 meters, including the Kitakami Mountains, the Mabechi River is made up of multiple currents that join while flowing north to Ninohe before it reaches Hachinohe Bay in Aomori Prefecture. The Mabechi River zigzags through Kindaichi Onsen, and the riverside there attracts the attention of researchers from around the world as the riverbed is famous for having fossils. If you take a stroll by the riverside, you can find round nodule stones made of fossilized animals and plants.
address:Osagawa, Kindaichi, Ninohe-shi, Iwate Prefecture

Ishibuchi Bridge

The perfect place to enjoy viewing the Mabechi River and its riverside with a beautiful backdrop of nature that changes each season. The pure spring water that flows from Mt. Oritsume has made it famous as a place for fishing ayu sweetfish with live decoys in summer.
address:Kindaichi, Ninohe-shi, Iwate Prefecture