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“Small, Wonderful Ryokan”
Review of Shimizu Ryokan

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Shimizu Ryokan
Ranked #4 of 141 Hotels / Ryokan in Yufu
Certificate of Excellence
Beppu, Japan
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Small, Wonderful Ryokan”
Reviewed September 24, 2013

My family and I loved our stay at Shimizu Ryokan. It is in a rural area and was extremely serene. Our host Shimizu-san and his sister was extremely nice and welcoming. They have both a cave-style onsen and an outdoor onsen, which was both wonderful. They also have a private onsen for those who are too shy, however the private onsen is small and will have to be reserve before hand. After our bath, we were treated with a delicious and plentiful dinner. Overall it was a great stay and I would definitely visit Shimizu Ryokan again.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Natsu U
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
志美津旅館, マネージャー at Shimizu Ryokan, responded to this review, September 27, 2013
Thank you very much for visiting our hotel.
We hope to see you again in the near future.
Someday when we will visit in Thailand, we are looking forward to stay at your hotel.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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92 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
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  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (11)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Thai first
  • Any
English first
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
67 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
Reviewed July 23, 2013

Thumbs up for Shimizu san and all the Ryokan staffs. Upon reaching the compound using our car, the staff saw us and came to guide us to the Ryokan. Check-in was a breeze with Shimizu-san, and he walked us through the whole Ryokan facilities.

Since not many guests were staying at that night, Shimizu-san offered to give us privacy for both the outdoor and cave onsen. Yes, onsen in a cave!

Dinner was awesome at the private dining room. Don't be fooled when the first set of dishes were served. More kept on coming. At the end of it, we were so full.

Room was really big and cozy with a very nice view of the river and japanese garden.

The ryokan is right beside the infamous stone walk, though its was kinda gloomy throughout the day and night. Most of the shops were closed. To the extent that we thought the area was abandoned.

Overall, a really pleasant stay. Would come back again in the future! Do remember that driving is highly recommended as the place is really remote.

Room Tip: Request for a river-facing room.
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Wiliam S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
96 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 117 helpful votes
Reviewed February 11, 2013

We were very fortunate to have been able to reserve the last room available at this ryokan as we booked very late. The warmth, thoughtfulness and generosity that the owner, Shimizu-san, and his sister Honjo-san extended to us during our stay were incredible and unforgettable. It seems that we were upgraded to a very luxurious and large 25-tatami mat room that consisted of three rooms, and faced their lovely Japanese garden. You can feel that the owners were committed to the comfort and enjoyment of their guests and spared no details to achieve that. Dinner was an excellently prepared Kyoto-style kaiseki meal featuring seasonal local vegetables, tofu, fish and local bungo beef. We really loved the starter of soft tofu with uni and wasabi, and when Shimizu-san learnt how much we liked it, he pleasantly surprised us by adding that lovely dish to our lunch the next day. He later told us that the ryokan’s chef was trained in Kyoto-style cooking although he is a Yunohira local. The onsen is unique with its grotto caves but we enjoyed the outdoor rotenburo the most. Even if you do not stay at Ryokan Shimizu, do try their Linden Café Bar for lunch or drinks and warm up beside their excellent fireplace and enjoy listening to Shimizu-san’s jazz LP’s.
Yunohira is a very small spa village along the river and several walks (during the day and night) are recommended in order to soak in the changing atmosphere of this picturesque town. There are several public baths that looked very clean but we did not try (perhaps next time!). On Shimizu-san’s recommendation, we took a walk up the hill to ascend the 300 steps up to the local jinja. Despite the rather chilly morning weather, the clear skies and crisp air provided just the right motivation to get us up to the jinja and to ring the bell for our New Year wishes. To top it all off, Shimizu-san insisted that we hitched a ride with him to Yufuin where we were to catch our bus to Aso after checking out - this turned into a longer drive for him as he detoured along the way in order to show us a magnificent view of Mount Yufu (or Bungo Fuji as the locals lovingly calls it). His gracious lift saved us the cost of the local train from Yunohira to Yufuin and also gave us more time to linger in Yunohira. There were many more thoughtful gestures from Shimizu-san that would be too lengthy to mention in this review – perhaps one already gets the point we are making that he is an immaculately gracious host indeed. Shimizu-san is a former deputy Mayor of Yufuin and speaks excellent English because part of his engineering education was taken in the States – hubby had a long discussion with him about infrastructure development in Yufuin and Japan. We wish that we can return to Yunohira and meet Shimizu-san and Honjo-san again soon. Very highly recommended!

Room Tip: Although the Ryokan's website is in Japanese, we were able to book from the English language sit...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank ChuJoe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
57 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
Reviewed October 25, 2012

My husband and I wanted to take my mother on a relaxing trip in Japan's spa country when we came across Ryokan Shimizu. It is located a stone's throw away from all the touristy action of Yufuin and Beppu. Yunohira town is a very picturesque and quaint little town that is peppered with many local onsens. Yufuin is only one train stop away and it made a really convenient daytrip. The ryokan offers a pick up and drop off service to the train station.

The ryokan is located on top of a little hill among mountains and paddy fields, and it is right by a river and one of the most interesting draws of this ryokan is its cave onsen. The cave onsen is by far one of the best experiences that we've had in Japan. There is also an outdoor onsen that we enjoyed and private bath for families.

As if that wasn't enough, we were very pleasantly surprised by the generosity, kindness and hospitality of Mr Shimizu, his family and his staff. Mr Shimizu, as we found out later, is the ex- vice mayor of Yufu City. He made us feel incredibly welcome by going above and beyond to make us feel welcome by engaging us in conversation and spoiling us rotten with painstakingly prepared breakfasts and dinners. When Mr Shimizu found out that my husband enjoys single malt whisky, he actually went searching through his own personal collection and offered them to my husband. We enjoyed our time at Ryokan Shimizu so much that we decided to extend our stay there. We were lucky that Mr Shimizu was available the next day and he offered to take us on a mini road trip so that we could explore the Mt Aso area (we did not rent a car). Upon checking out, he also got his clerk to drive us all the way to Beppu as he learned of my mother's bad knees. The generosity showed to us at Ryokan Shimizu was absolutely humbling and we really wanted to leave a big tip but Mr Shimizu and his staff refused it profusely and only charged us for the fuel, leaving us completely flabbergasted.

This ryokan is easily one of the best accommodations that we have stayed at to date and we are definitely hoping to make a return one day bringing with us a good bottle of Hibiki for dear Mr Shimizu.

Room Tip: Rooms with the river view make a very pleasant view to wake up to.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank TravellingBeet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hong Kong
Level Contributor
43 reviews
43 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
Reviewed May 10, 2009

Getting to this onsen inn takes a bit of ingenuity. It's own website is just in Japanese, but it has a budget annex with English web pages, and can be booked through it. Plus the inn is an unexpected distance from the train station, but the inn is more than happy to pick up from the station.

The little village where this inn is located is a picture perfect mountain idyll. English guidebooks talk of Yufuin as the quiet cozy alternative to Beppu, but Yufuin is the big city compared to Yunohira.

Food at the Shimizu is fabulous, a never ending spread both for dinner (the in room service is especially nice) and breakfast. The inn's 'cave' hot spring is novel; the outdoor pool also special. Room was very big, essentially a suite with several separate 'chambers'. Staff quite friendly.

'tis a bit pricey, but a great splurge.

  • Stayed January 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
4 Thank YonHither
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Shimizu Ryokan

Property: Shimizu Ryokan
Address: 263 Yunohira, Yufuincho, Yufu 879-5112, Oita Prefecture
Phone Number:
Location: Japan > Kyushu-Okinawa > Oita Prefecture > Yufu > Yunohira Onsen
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 141 Hotels / Ryokan in Yufu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 9
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