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Kissho Yamanaka
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Reviews (152)
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Reviewed 26 October 2017

We chose Yamanaka Onsen out of the 4 main towns in Kaga Onsen (we've been to Yamashiro Onsen two years ago but it was only okay) because of the gorge, and this hotel seemed the best for our purposes (we were 4 adults and 1 one-year-old, and wanted a room with both futons and proper beds and included a onsen in the room). The hotel provides free shuttle bus from the train station (and back, around 20-25mins journey), and treat you with a very high level of hospitality the moment you step in. We were shown to the lobby lounge to sit down and given a hot calming drink whilst the staff handled the passports and check-in processes (quite uncommon for us in Japan!) and there are loads of little "service" like the free pancakes at the teppanyaki restaurant for tea, free drinks at the lounge, and the yukata dressing-up if we had wanted to use them. Our room was perfect for our group: my husband and I wanted a traditional futon-on-tatami room for us and our little baby (it was the living room space which got transformed to a bedroom at night), and we also wanted a western bedroom for my mother-in-law and sister-in-law. It came with a huge comfy bed, a high-tech massage chair (so. good.) a little sitting area, and an amazing attached rotenburo onsen bathtub and bathroom. Plus, the layout was well-thought-out so that both groups could use the bathroom and toilets without disturbing each other by an intricate system of different passageways and doors. There was a mini-fridge with complimentary plate of fruit, complimentary tea (two types! kagaboucha and green tea leaves), kettle, 2 tvs (one with netflix?!!), a full array of traditional sweet desserts, even a small flask of sake in the room, all complimentary! We explored the area by ourselves, the gorge was beautiful and the town was very quaint and quiet, wonderfully relaxing after a few days of hectic travelling. Dinner was so amazing, we had it in our own private room at the restaurant (comes with the western-japanese room package), and they provided a special seat for my one-year-old and prepared special food for her, which I'm very touched for. This was definitely the best hotels we've stayed at in our entire japan trip and I would love to come back again!

  • Stayed: October 2017, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
1  Thank ricepapergirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 July 2017 via mobile

Fresh ingredients so beautiful and high quality Dinner Breakfast made by Traditional Kaga vesitable . Reserved Bath is fantastic. Customer can make a reservation for private onsen bath. Free shuttle bus From Kaga Onsen .st and Komatsu Airport. ( Reservations required) . Ryokan room is so clean. Around Ryokan, you can relax with nature and human love.

Stayed: July 2017, travelled with family
Thank MAKIKANZAKI
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 April 2017

This was a fantastic Japanese Onsen experience. I'm not sure my wife and I were prepared for the structure of the onsen experience, sa this was our first, but we soon got into the rhythm of things. The Japanese onsen routine is generally: eat, soak, eat, soak , eat some more, and finally soak some more. At check-in the ryokan asked you to select the dinner and breakfast restaurants for each day, gives you the schedule for the public baths, afternoon pancakes, tea, seaweed jelly and free beer. They will also schedule transportation for trips to nearby temples, or sister ryokan for soaks there. It is a dizzing check-in.

We had a room with a private bath. It was a fabulous experience. Very efficient and courteous staff. Would do it again.

Room Tip: Rooms with private onsen are great.
  • Stayed: March 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Larry T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 March 2017

We stayed in a traditional Japanese room for a couple of nights. The tariff includes breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner, so is very reasonable. Service was excellent and the food was great. We tried both Japanese and Western breakfasts and each was carefully prepared and presented. Dinner was a multi-course affair in the two restaurants we tried. There are baths for guests but also three private onsens which you have to book. The town itself is small but worth a wander. The walk by the river is definitely worth doing, very scenic. The hotel has regular pickups and dropoffs to Kagaonsen train station. Definitely worth spending one or two nights here.

Room Tip: Get a room with a river view
  • Stayed: February 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank DTSydney
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 January 2017

This ryokan is located in Yamanaka Onsen, Kaga-shi, Ishikawa Prefecture. It was the last ryokan we stayed in the recent Chubu Trip and as a result we had already got a lot of good experience and likewise raising our expectation high when we arrived.

Just beside the beautiful Kakusenkai Ravine, the entrance to the ryokan is certainly impressive, with two big lanterns with the name of the ryokan greeting us. Going straight in there are two large gold lion statues welcoming (or guarding?) in the middle. The overall setting is very grand and impressive.

We were shown to the lobby, with the okami giving us a towel to clean our hands and a cup of green tea to relax, while she handled the registration and arranged the time for our meals. While waiting we took the time to check on the information, and found that this ryokan is part of a group with also ryokan and hotels in Izu and Okinawa. Maybe worth visiting some of them in the future.

Our room 爛漫 is located on the top floor, which is the special room in the corner. Once through the door there is a large area for changing shoes, leading to the Japanese anteroom, while on the side it was decorated like the outdoor Japanese garden with cobblestones, leading to other rooms, similar to traditional Japanese house setting. This is an interesting design which I think would bring up memories for many locals on their home when they are young.

Through the anteroom we entered the Japanese style living room, where there was some snacks, sake, and fruit prepared for us. If there is family this can be converted to a bedroom in the evening as well to accommodate more people, as the maximum the room can serve six guests, with two in the anteroom and two in this Japanese living room.

The wow came when we went into the bedroom. It was by far the largest I have ever been. In a western style setting, there are windows on two sides of the wall, a big comfortable bed, a sofa to relax and watch TV, and a state-of-the-art massage chair! Now we can relax after bathing and enjoy the massage.

The bathroom is quite nice too with high-end amenities, and leading out to the semi-open bath, which is a stone bath looking out to the river and at night it was a very calm and smoothing experience admiring the lights of the houses along the river and onsen street.

As part of the complimentary service the ryokan also had an afternoon tea, and we went to the teppanyaki restaurant, where the chef is preparing fresh pancakes for guests. We had a lovely afternoon tea with nice pancakes and coffee, before we went to the public bath.

The baths are big with a huge inlet dumping spring water into the pool, which is like a waterfall. On the day the ryokan is not too busy, so there is only a few people and I had a good privacy bathing in the big pool, before moving to the semi-open bath to further enjoy. Nothing particularly fancy or special, it was nonetheless a good public bath I have been to.

Our dinner is served in the special restaurant Chihiro reserved for guests staying in special and deluxe rooms. We are seated at the best table at the back, with the okami attending and explaining each dish. Starting with the famous Kaga plum wine, which is very good, we were fortunate to eat again the in-season female crab. The preparation in my opinion is of an even higher level than the previous ones we had in other ryokan, as the vinegar was prepared into jelly and then sprinkled on the crab, without having to dip the crab meat in the vinegar to affect the texture. There are also gold flakes sprinkled to add to the premium. A great start and putting us in heaven straightaway.

Then came the appetizers, involving eight different delicacies of the season. Unfortunately the okami's English was not very good and I could not make out most of what she said. Apart from the really fresh and tasty food, the plating is also one of the most beautiful in my experience. The utensils used to serve, how the chef used leaves and flowers to complement, the color of the different things is also a big feast and contributed to a phenomenal experience.

The boiled dish has some wild mushroom, with a tofu skin wrapping and crab meat on top, with some celery and yuzu shreds to add further flavors and freshness. It is light, delicate dish which is a great example of the finesse of the chef.

Next is the sashimi with big shrimp, squid and Japanese amberjack. The sashimi is very fresh and on the side there are also different condiments to pair, apart from the typical soy sauce and wasabi.

Then there are the sushi, with the two pieces being tuna and red seabream which are so good and fresh, with strong flavors of the fish and simply another explosion in the mouth bringing in huge satisfaction.

The grill dish is a fish grilled with miso sauce, but unfortunately I don't know what exactly is the fish. However, it is very tasty with a nice texture, firm but not tough and the flavors are not being sidelined by the miso taste.

Next we have the most interesting dish of the night, something I have never tried before. It is essentially a steamed seabream but stuffed with fillings. I could not identify the exactly are those, and the texture is kind of loose. On the taste it is quite light to balance with the fish meat. Not something exceptional but certainly unique.

Then we have the deep-fried dish which included green pepper, a Kaga signature dish with a piece of seaweed wrapping something like fish roll, and then a piece of seabream. Even though it is deep-fried, you won't feel a hint of oiliness as evidenced by the piece of paper underneath which you don't see a big oil stain. This is another testimony of the skills of the chef.

The marinated dish has some fish roes, turnips and cucumber. A refreshing small plate to help clean the palate after the different seafood earlier to prepare for the meat, which is a piece of duck cooked with yam, mushroom, tofu, carrot and ginseng. The duck is braised well not to feel tough or chewy on texture, with a nice gamey taste, and the vegetables provided a good supplement to enhance the flavors.

Wrapping it up there is a rice cooked with the crab yolk, with miso soup and pickles. We were all very full by then but the rice is so good that we finished the whole bowl and everything.


Dessert is seasonal fruit with a sorbet, with a piece of Japanese pudding. In terms of variety, food quality and plating as I mentioned this might be the best kaiseki I had so far.

After a nice sleep the next morning we had another wonderful breakfast, with assortment of fresh vegetable salad, grilled fish, pickles, egg and boiled tofu and mushroom, as well as fresh fruit. The two of us are really spoiled for such great food.

If I have to pick something to criticize is that surprisingly there was no one come to show us off when we were leaving. After settling the payment, we simply push our luggage and walked out, then I have to go across the street to get my car and drive back to pick up our stuff. All the while there was no one attending to us. For a ryokan I think that is simply unheard of and unacceptable, and got a big red mark unfortunately for our overall experience. Don't know it was an oversight or not but they must improve.

My spent 78,800 yen for the stay and meals, which is not cheap but considering the hardware, comfort and food I would say it is worth it. If only the service could be better and warmer towards foreigners it would be a ryokan I would definitely re-visit and recommend.

The overall rating is 7.3/10.

  • Stayed: December 2016, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
4  Thank Peter C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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