February 2023: Please note Kurama Onsen is temporarily closed. Please see Kurama And Kibune for other things to see and do in the area.
The best onsen (hot spring) in the Kyoto area, Kurama Onsen is an easy 30-minute train trip north of Kyoto. Sitting in the outdoor tub surrounded by forested mountains is pure onsen bliss.
Kurama Onsen Outdoor Bath © gbsk
Onsen purists quibble that Kurama Onsen is not a real onsen (they claim that the natural spring water is heated a bit before entering the tubs). Frankly, we could care less – Kurama Onsen is a damn fine hot spring and it’s a great way to relax tired muscles after climbing up to nearby Kurama-dera Mountain Temple, or even walking all the way across the mountain from Kibune. You can choose from the indoor tubs that include all kinds of extras, or the bare bones outdoor pools (we always opt for the latter). If you’re lucky enough to be there when it’s snowing, you’re in for a magical experience.
520 Kurama Honmachi, Sakyo-ku
Outdoor bath only
Children (4-12 years old): \700
Outdoor bath and indoor bath (face towel, bath towel, and yukata included)
Children (4-12 years old): 1600
Non-smoking area: Yes
3min free shuttle bus ride from Kurama Station, Eizan line
10min walk from Kurama Station, Eizan line
Official Website (English)
Near To Here:
Kurama Onsen is located in Kyoto’s Kurama and Kibune district. See our complete list of things to do in Kyoto’s Kurama and Kibune district, including places to eat, nightlife and places to stay.
Where Is This Place Located?See these places on our Kyoto Google map:
- Open the Kyoto map
- You will see the list of places on the left hand side. (Click the 3-line icon in the top left corner if not). Scroll down or use the map search (the magnifying glass icon) to find the place you want.
- Click the name of the place in the list. Its location pin will be highlighted on the map.
- Map pins are color coded - BLUE: Hotels | VIOLET: Ryokan | PINK: Places to Eat | YELLOW: Things to See and Do
- If you're using the map on your phone, open the map and then search for the name of the place. The map will then zoom in on its location.
Kyoto Vacation Checklist
- For all the essentials in a brief overview, see my First Time In Kyoto guide
- Check Kyoto accommodation availability on Booking.com – usually you can reserve a room with no upfront payment. Pay when you check out. Free cancellations too
- Need tips on where to stay? See my one page guide Where To Stay In Kyoto
- See my comprehensive Packing List For Japan
- Buy a data-only SIM card online for collection when you arrive at Kansai International Airport (for Osaka and Kyoto) or Tokyo's Narita Airport. Or rent an unlimited data pocket wifi router
- Compare Japan flight prices and timings to find the best deals
- If you're visiting more than one city, save a ton of money with a Japan Rail Pass – here's my explanation of why it's worth it
- A prepaid Suica card makes travelling around Kyoto easy – here's how
- World Nomads offers simple and flexible travel insurance. Buy at home or while traveling and claim online from anywhere in the world