Named one of the three best onsens in Japan during the Edo period, the Gero Onsen (下呂温泉) is a wonderful and romantic place to relax and escape from the stressful buzz of the Japanese Metropolis. Its waters are known for its smoothness and skin beauty related benefits. Even though Gero town is now more urbanized than it was by the Edo period, appreciators clarifies that the Gero Onsen water´s famous special qualities remain the same and really worth the try. This must be true since visitors continue to consider it one of the best hot springs in Japan. And the best part is that you can visit it for free!
Best time to visit
Gero, which translated to “lower bath”, is located between Nagoya and Takayama (about one hour south of the last one). This makes October the best time to visit Gero because it is when the famous Takayama Festival takes place. During this time, Takayama gets crowded and accommodations can be hard to find, making Gero and enjoyable and convenient stopover. It is also a good season to enjoy hot springs, since is generally cold by this time but not enough to make outdoor bathing displeasurable.
How to get to Gero
1/ By train from Takayama or Nagoya
The fastest way to get to Gero onsen from Nagoya Station to Gero Station is by taking the JR Hida limited express, which costs around 4500 yen and takes about 90 minutes.
If you are not in a hurry and want to save some money, the cheapest way is to take the JR ordinary (non express) train, which costs around 2,270Yen and takes 160min.
Click here to find how to get to Nagoya.
To get to gero onsen from Takayama, the fastest way would be to take the limited express (about 2000 yen, takes 45 min) and the cheapest is by taking the local train, which takes about one hour and only costs 970 yen.
2/By bus from Takayama
You can find local buses from takayama to Gero Onsen which circulate every 1-2 hours .It costs 1040 yen one way trip and takes about 1 hour and a half hours.
3/ By shuttle bus from Nagoya (overnight guests).
Between Nagoya Station and Gero Station there is a daily shuttle bus operated by Gero Onsen for visitors who stay overnight. It costs 2800 yen (one way) and takes 2 and a half hours. You can get a round trip ticket for 3700 yen. However, you will need advance reservations.
Other than Gero Onsen, there are many great baths located in the Gero area ryokans that are open to the public. If you wish to try them, you should get the Yumeguri Tegata, a wooden tablet which serves as a spa pass. With this you can visit three baths of the about thirty ryokans covered by it. It is good for six months and costs 1300 yen.
If walking around the city made your feet tired and sore, don´t worry! There are free footbaths spread across the city, so you can sit, relax, and recharge your energies!!
Gero onsen is in the Gifu prefecture, click here to learn more about Gifu, watch videos, view itineraries and more!