Beppu Onsen "Kamiya Onsen"
We visited Beppu Onsen “Kamiya Onsen” in Chiyomachi, Beppu, Ōita. This onsen originally opened in the Edo period, and opened for the public by the grandfather of the current chairman Kenichi in the late 1800s. Kamiya (紙屋) means “Paper shop” in Japanese. This name was decided in the age when the printing technology rapidly developed and paper shops were growing along with that.
This is the reception.
There are simple compartments in the dressing room.
The bathroom is quiet and calm. Kenichi says many first-time visitors say “I like this onsen!” after taking a bath. He has a strong confidence in the water quality of Kamiya Onsen and thinks onsen lovers can understand it. We agree with him, the quality is pretty high.
The hot spring water is pouring from the bottom of the bathtub. According to the record made in 1908, the water is clear, smell-less, and moderate temperature. And these characteristics are completely the same even now.
As a large amount of hot spring water is always supplied, a lot of water is overflowing.
Yukio (left) is an onsen lover and came to Kamiya Onsen on this day, and Michiyoshi (right) is a regular bather who comes every day. They both say “Really, really, good hot spring!”, and, even in winter, you won’t feel a chill after bathing.
Also, the water is drinkable. Kenichi says this hot spring has been famous as a “Drinkable hot spring” from a long time ago, and used to be sent to Osaka.
This is a poem by Machiko Maruyama, she made this for Kamiya Onsen. It says “In a cold morning, her mother takes a foot bath here, she is watching it and it suddenly comes to her mind that her mother is not what she was.” This describes the feeling of a daughter to her mother and the years that have passed on both of them.
There is a community centre next to Kamiya Onsen. In Beppu, many public bathhouses and community centres are built together.
He is the chairman of the union Kenichi. He used to work for a local broadcasting station, and has been considering how to tell the attractions of Beppu. He actually directed some events to revive his town. He is still passionate and says he still has a lot to do to make Beppu more attractive.
Name: Kamiya Onsen
Address: 11-27 Chiyomachi, Beppu, Ōita
Access (Car): 21 min from the centre of Oita City. 45 min from the Oita airport
Parking Lot: 4
Opening Hours: Daily 13:00 - 23:00 (Private use for 11:30 - 12:30)
Price: JPY 100