Kurokawa Onsen Visitor Center and `Bechinkan`; New Year Taiko Drums 2017

A quick round up of events  as 2016 nears an end….

Between now and the end of March 2017 enjoy an  evening stroll in the center of Kurokawa and you can view the beautiful warm light given off by hand-carved bamboo lanterns erected along the river.

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Bamboo lanterns

If you enjoy listening to Japanese drums,then make sure to visit Kurokawa on one of the first three Sundays in January. There will be a performance by Yamanami Taiko group at NOON on January 1st,8th and 15th in the square in front of `Bechinkan` (just go down the stairs behind the Visitor Center)

 

VISITOR CENTER `Kazenoya`

When you visit Kurokawa Onsen,make sure to pop in the Visitor Center if you need any help or advice,the staff speak a little English and are very helpful. In the Visitor Center ( open daily from 9am to 6pm) you can:

-Buy Onsen-hopping passes and get English Onsen-hopping maps

-Get various maps and guides in English,such as the Hiking Map or maps/guides of the Minami Oguni area

-Book a room at a ryokan (if vacancies are available)

-Rent an audio guide (English available)

-Ask about local transport

-Buy a small present,drinks etc in the shop

-Leave luggage in coin lockers nearby

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Entrance to the Visitor Center `Kazenoya`.

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Inside the Visitor Center/shop

 

`BECHINKAN`

Take the steps down from the Visitor Center and you will also find the `Bechinkan` which offers:

-Various Maps and guides

-Yukata robe rental

-Electric bicycle rental (except in winter months)

-English-speaking staff

-A large tatami `Relaxation Lounge` where you can enter free of charge to take a rest and cool down in summer (or warm up in winter) . Take off your shoes of course and please do not smoke or disturb others using the lounge. This is also where visitors wishing to rent a yukata can get changed.

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Entrance to the `Relaxation Lounge` open 10am to 5pm daily.

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Entrance to `Bechinkan`

 

Enjoy the winter holidays,and be sure to come and visit Kurokawa Onsen to warm up in the hot spring waters.

One of the best onsen experiences I have ever had in Kurokawa was bathing one evening in an outdoor bath while snowflakes landed and melted on my face…..it was worth the 5km/hour drive home in the snow,which had settled considerably while we were bathing. Be prepared if you do visit in winter,snow tires or chains will be necessary if it snows on some of the steep and windy roads leading to the inns located on the outskirts of the Kurokawa Onsen area.

Best Wishes everyone for the New Year 2017!

 

 

October Event: 2015 Kurokawa Onsen Festival, October 3rd

It`s that time of year again, this year`s Kurokawa Onsen Festival will be taking place on Saturday,October 3rd near the Visitor Center  and in the surrounding streets. If you are staying in Kurokawa that night it should be quite lively downtown and well worth a look. I`m intrigued by the `bottom sumo` and may well give it a try this year…

Events start from around 3pm and end later than usual this year at 11pm,with fireworks. If you are driving,be prepared for some road closures or diversions downtown,especially during the evening parade.

Here is a schedule of the day`s events:

15:00 Food stalls open

16:00 Lucky draw for children (and a rumour that a certain big black bear with rosy red cheeks may be in the area!)

16:30 Games for children

17:30 Live music (brass band)

18:10 Parade in Samurai costume starts

18:40 Events for adults,arm-wrestling (men) and bottom sumo (women)

19:30 Live music

20:20 Parade in Samurai costume arrives

21:20 Yamanami Taiko drums

21:50 Mochi-rice ball tossing

22:00 Prize draw

22:50 Fireworks

JAPANESE FOLLOWS….

 

2015年黒川温泉感謝祭

 

 

 

August 22nd Event in Kurokawa Onsen: Kawabata Yoichi

The `Kawabata Yoichi` a small yet lively evening fair takes place along Kawabata -Dori in the center of Kurokawa on the evening of  Saturday,August 22nd,so come and join in if you happen to be staying in the area. From 5pm the various food and drink stalls along the street are open, with  a lucky draw throughout the evening (even if you don`t purchase a winning ticket you can get a free towel!) At 7:30pm there are events planned for younger children,and from 8pm music and Japanese drumming . The festivities draw to a close at 9pm.

Japanese poster follows. Please phone the Tourist Center on 0967-48-8130 for further details (some English spoken).