This is most certainly one for the bucket list of any keen traveller.
Your choice of accommodation is a crucial element when it comes to planning an unforgettable trip, from securing the most luxurious resort for a relaxing summer getaway to selecting the most central location for those with a packed city break itinerary.
For those with Japan on their must-visit list, we think we’ve found the perfect spot – and its situated amongst some of the country’s most iconic scenery.
Japan is a country with a rich and varied culture. Its fast-paced cities are home to some of the most advanced technology in the world, where conceptual, experimental ideas thrive. Architecture, food, nightlife – every area of Japan’s urban metropolis is ever-changing, always ready to offer visitors something entirely new.
However, to truly experience Japan, travellers must go beyond the hustle and bustle of Japanese city life, venturing out into the parts of the country that have somehow perfectly maintained their rich heritage and unmatched tranquility. For this chapter of your trip, the Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan is the place to stay.
Not only is the Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan the oldest hotel in Japan, but it’s recognised by Guinness World Records as the oldest hotel on earth. Incredibly, it’s thought to have been operating since 705AD.
Founded by Fujiwara Mahito around 1,300 years ago, the Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan has been passed down for 52 generations – and it’s easy to see why the family at the heart of the hotel’s operation would be reluctant to leave.
Situated at the foot of South Japanese Alps in Yamanashi, the hotel is just a stone’s throw from Mount Fuji – Japan’s tallest mountain, standing at over 12,000ft. Famously, Mount Fuji’s surroundings offer some of the most beautiful scenery in the world, with the Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan making up just one attraction within this vast, unspoilt area.
The hotel’s age could understandably leave you wondering whether or not it has seen better days – after all, breaking records is no good if the hotel itself makes for an uncomfortable stay.
Fortunately, the Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan has been cared for lovingly throughout its rich history, maintained with love and periodically updated to cater for the tastes of the era’s travellers. It has had many faces over the years, modernised and brought into line with the standards of the time, always without sacrificing on its important traditional aspects.
Modernisation, however, has had little effect on the unmatched level of tranquility here. The Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan has always offered visitors a secluded getaway with peace and natural beauty at the core of its design. Home to some of the world’s most incredible hot springs, which can be enjoyed against a backdrop of lush greenery and rolling hills, the resort is a sanctuary for those looking to switch off for a while and mute the white noise of the outside world. In many ways, the Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan feels like a world of its very own.
A stay at the Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan starts from around $470 per night, a small price to pay for the sense of peace and escapism available to guests. The rooms themselves are decorated beautifully, keeping traditional Japanese interior design at their core. For those who are looking to truly elevate their experience, there are rooms with generous balconies, each opening out onto some of Japan’s most breathtaking natural beauty.
Japan is the dream getaway for so many across the world, offering the very best in conceptual accommodation within its cities, but when it comes time to truly experience the stark contrast of its unspoilt, rural beauty, the Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan should be at the very top of your list.
More information can be found on the Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan website.