Day trip bathing travel journals to hot springs where we visited by train and bus

Shima Onsen Sekizenkan Genrokunoyu

Shima Onsen Sekizenkan Genrokunoyu

4236-1, Oaza-Shima, Nakanojo Town, Agatsuma District, Gunma Pref.

The bathing room has Japanese Romanticism style beauty. If you soak in hot water Flowing from the Source, you will feel rich.

Shima Onsen Sekizenkan Genrokunoyu bathing room
Shima Onsen Sekizenkan exterior Shima Onsen Sekizenkan Genrokunoyu bathtub Shima Onsen Sekizenkan Genrokunoyu hot water spout

The bathing room is a "Taisho Romanesque" design blossomed in Japan 100 years ago. Bright light comes from the Western-like arched window. And the light reflects off the bathtub to create a soft atmosphere.

The hot water is typical of Shima Onsen, fresh, colorless and transparent. And it is, Of course, 100% Flowing from the Source. The hot water overflowing from the bath is peacefully filling the entire bathing room floor.

Sekizenkan Main Building was built in 1691. This is the oldest hot spring inn building in Japan and is designated as an Important Cultural Property. Further, it is said that the red bridge appears in "Spirited Away" is modeled after the bridge in front of Sekizenkan.


Rating of access

1.0 pt(from Ueno)

→ How to rate access train

Area / Railway

Kanto Region
Gunma Pref.

JR Agatsuma Line


Route from Tokyo (Ueno)
  • Ueno Sta.JR: 2 hrs 50 min Takasaki Line etc. - Agatsuma Line¥ 2,640
  • Nakanojo Sta.Walk: 3 hrs 30 min 16.4 km (10.2 mi) Difference in elevation: 308 m (1010 ft)
  • Sekizenkan
Route from Tokyo (Ueno)
  • Ueno Sta. JR express: 2 hrs 05 min Kusatsu Non-reserved seat ¥ 4,000
  • Nakanojo Sta. Kan-etsu Kotsu bus: 40 min for Shima Onsen ¥ 930
  • Shima Onsen Bus StopWalk: 1 min 0.1km (0.06 mi)
  • Sekizenkan
Route from Tokyo (Ueno)
  • Ueno Sta. JR Shinkansen: 50 min Toki etc. Non-reserved seat ¥ 4,940
  • Takasaki Sta.JR: 1 hr (Joetsu Line -) Agatsuma Line ¥ -
  • Nakanojo Sta.Taxi: 30 min 16.4 km (10.2 mi) about ¥ 6,000
  • Sekizenkan
Route from Tokyo (Tokyo)
  • Tokyo Sta. (Yaesu South Gate) Walk: 1 min
  • JR Expressway Bus Stop (No.9 or No.5) Kan-etsu Kotsu
    Expressway bus:
    3 hrs 30 - 45 min
    Shima Onsen-go ¥ 3,100
  • Shima Onsen Bus StopWalk: 1 min 0.1km (0.06 mi)
  • Sekizenkan
Route from Tokyo (Ikebukuro)
  • Ikebukuro Sta.Tobu: 35 min Tojo Line ¥ 480
  • Kawagoe Sta. (West exit) Kan-etsu Kotsu Expressway bus: 3 hrs Shima Onsen-go ¥ 2,800
  • Shima Onsen Bus StopWalk: 1 min 0.1km (0.06 mi)
  • Sekizenkan
Route from Tokyo (Shinjuku)
  • Shinjuku Sta. (New South Gate) Walk: 2 min
  • Shinjuku Expressway Bus Terminal
    (4th floor) JR Expressway bus: 3 hrs 06 min Joshu Yumeguri-go ¥ 2,380 - ¥ 2,950
  • Nakanojo Eki Minami Bus StopWalk: 5 min 0.4 km (0.2 mi)
  • Nakanojo Sta.(The rest is the same as above)
Routes from Tokyo
  • Ueno
  • JR
  • Nakanojo
  • Walk
  • hot spring
  • 6 hrs 20 min ¥ 2,640

  • Ueno
  • JR express
  • Nakanojo
  • Bus
  • hot spring
  • 2 hrs 46 min ¥ 4,930

  • Ueno
  • Shinkansen
  • Takasaki
  • JR
  • Nakanojo
  • Taxi
  • hot spring
  • 2 hrs 28 min ¥ 11,470

  • Tokyo
  • Expressway bus
  • hot spring
  • 3 hrs 32 - 47 min ¥ 3,100

  • Ikebukuro
  • Tobu
  • Kawagoe
  • Expressway bus
  • hot spring
  • 3 hrs 36 min ¥ 3,280

  • Shinjuku
  • Expressway bus
  • Nakanojo
  • (The rest is the same as above)
  • 3 hrs 13 min+ ¥ 2,380 - ¥ 2,950+

  • The price of JR Express and normal Shinkansen is "Basic fare" plus "(Super) Express charge". (These are determined according to the distance.) "(Super) Express charge" has two types: Reserved seat and Non-reserved seat. Reserved seat charge adds ¥930 (during the busiest season), ¥730 (during the busy season), ¥530 (during the normal season) or ¥330 (during the off season) to Non-reserved seat charge. (For details, please refer to JR East_Ticketing and Busiest / Busy / Normal / Off season calendar.)
  • There is bicycle rental service at Shima Onsen. For details, see Shima-chari.
  • The expressway buses from Tokyo area to Shima Onsen (or Nakanojo Eki Minami Bus Stop) are as follows.
    Name Main starting point (station) Operator
    Shima Onsen-go Tokyo, Kawagoe Kan-etsu Kotsu Bus and others
    Ikaho Shima Onsen-go Haneda Line Haneda Airport, Tokyo
    Takasaki / Ikaho / Shima Onsen-go Hachioji Line Hachioji
    Kichijoji - Kusatsu Onsen Line Kichijoji
    Joshu Yumeguri-go / Tokyo Yumeguri-go Tokyo, Shinjuku, Nerima JR Bus Kanto
  • The above fares are based on cash. When using an IC card, the fares may differ slightly.
  • The above times and distances are approximate. Does not include transfering or waiting times.

How to get to Sekizenkan

(Directions from Shima Onsen Bus Stop)
  1. Walk about 60 m (197 ft) toward the back of the hot spring town
  2. Cross the red parapet bridge visible on the left

bus stop: bus stop

Click the map to open Google Map

Travel journal of day trip bathing to hot spring


He is an orthodox hot springs lover and particular about quality of springs. He loves the hot springs flowing from the source, the hot water with a presence, and the rustic atmosphere.
He doesn't care much about quality of hot springs. He loves the open-air bath, and prefers hot springs that have visible features such as good views.

(→ Continuation from Kawaranoyu)
Nishi-san and Kita-san are visiting Shima Onsen in Gunma Prefecture today. After enjoying "Kawaranoyu", they came to "Sekizenkan".

Sekizenkan and Keiun Bridge, Shima Onsen

Sekizenkan and Keiun Bridge

Oh, this is THAT bridge!

Hmm? Is this bridge famous?

The red bridge appears in "Spirited Away" seems to be modeled after this bridge. Indeed, it may be similar.

Is that so? I see, there are such highlights.

Genrokunoyu exterior, Shima Onsen

Genrokunoyu exterior (entrance)

They entered Sekizenkan, open the door of the entrance of "Genrokunoyu".

Oh, open the door and I'm in the bathing room.

It's true. The inside is absolutely different from the outside.

It's "Taisho Roman". I guess it was so stylish at that time.

To check whether this is really the bridge of "Spirited Away", you need to ask Director Hayao Miyazaki. Anyway, it is true that he has stayed at Sekizenkan.

Sekizenkan Genrokunoyu bathing room, Shima Onsen

Bathing room

Building in the Taisho era means, it's about 100 years old. In short, this is an important cultural property-like, too. I like such a retro feeling.

Bath of an important cultural property? It's a VIP treatment, you know.

Genrokunoyu has five bathtubs. Nishi-san and Kita-san entered the one of them.

Sekizenkan Genrokunoyu bathtub, Shima Onsen


I wonder the hot water is fresh and a bit salty-like ...

Oh? The hot water is springing out of the bottom, you know. Is this faucet a decoration?

It looks like it was really used in the past. I mean, it has retired now.

Sekizenkan Genrokunoyu former spout, Shima Onsen

Former spout of hot water (currently unused)

By the way, there are five bathtubs, is there any difference?

Who knows?

Well, I'll try another one.

Kita-san moves to the next bathtub.

Genrokunoyu was built in 1930. Strictly speaking, it's not in the Taisho era.

How about? Something different?

Hmmmm ... I wonder the temperature is a little different.

For the time being, Kita-san, who entered all five baths, found a small door on the bathing room wall.

Oh? What's this door?

Try opening it?

Sekizenkan Genrokunoyu steam bath, Shima Onsen

Steam bath

... A chair? Tiled?

Oh, There is an explanation. It's a steam bath. It says putting in hot water and closing the door. In short, it's a sauna, of old type.

Then I'll try it.

Kita-san, who put in hot water and closed the door, came out in just 5 seconds.

Oh? have you already come out?

It's dark, small, and stuffy. I hate this.

Sekizenkan Genrokunoyu bathing room, Shima Onsen

Bathing room

Kita-san did not like an old-fashioned steamed bath, but they enjoyed a time-travel feeling for a while in the bathing room full of "Taisho Roman".

(April 2013)

Since the same hot water is supplied to all five bathtubs, the temperature is basically the same. However, because the precipitates have been attached to the inside of the pipe, the way of hot water is slightly different. So there may be differences in the temperature of each bathtub.

Impression & rating

Hot water that 100% Flowing from the Source is very fresh. Enjoying it in retro atmosphere is very luxurious.

3.5 pt

Impression & rating

The bathing in "Taisho Roman" is a precious experience. But there is almost no washing place and it is hard to use.

2.0 pt

→ How to rate

The Onsen facility

4236-1, Oaza-Shima, Nakanojo Town, Agatsuma District, Gunma Pref.
domestic: 0279-64-2101
international: +81-279-64-2101
Shima Onsen Sekizenkan
Day trip bathing hours
[Weekday] 10:00 - 17:00 (Last entry at 16:00) [Sat.,Sun., Holiday]
10:00 - 16:00
(Last entry at 15:00)
Regular holiday
Open everyday
Adult: ¥ 1,500 / 3 - 11 years old: ¥ 1,100 / Under 3 years old: Free of charge
Gender-separated indoor bath, Mixed bathing indoor bath
(Day trip bathing is available in both indoor baths "Genrokunoyu" (gender-separated) and "Iwaburo" (mixed bathing).)
No lockers in the undressing room.
(Genrokunoyu has an undressing room in the bathing room.)
Tattoo OK. (If you completely hide it with seals etc.)

The hot spring data
(According to hot spring analysis report etc.)

(Survey date: Feb. 27, 2013)

Spring quality
Sodium / Calcium - Chloride / Sulfate spring (Hypotonic Neutral High temperature spring)
Source name
4236-2, Aza-Shinyu, Oaza-Shima, Nakanojo Town, Agatsuma District, Gunma Pref.
67.4 ℃ (153.3 ℉)
[air temperature 8 ℃ (46.4 ℉)]
Not measured (Natural spring)

According to the website of Sekizenkan, more than 900 L / min

pH value
Total ingredients
1.86 g / kg
Colorless and transparent

Today's Detour

Sekizenkan Main Building
Sekizenkan staircase Sekizenkan Romantic Tunnel

Sekizenkan History Tour

(Photo above: Main building,
below left: Staircase in the Main Building,
below right: "Romantic tunnel" connecting the Main Building and the mountain villa)

Sekizenkan has a history of over 300 years. Besides a hot spring, it is an architecturally interesting ryokan. It's also fun to walk around the inside of building, find a motif that looks like "Spirited Away". The History Tour will explain the history of Shima Onsen and Sekizenkan, as well as architectural features. So if you have time, it might be a good idea to take part. (Free entry fee, reservation required, about 45 minutes required)

  • The descriptions on this page contain personal opinions and are not necessarily objective facts.
  • The information may have changed at present. In particular, the charge and price etc. has often not updated from the time of travel, so check the latest information on the official website.

Onsen List

Tohoku Region

Kanto Region

Kyushu Region

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