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.
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
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)
-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.
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!