Don't be put off by the exterior or the reception area of this hotel! On arrival I thought we'd made a terrible mistake but the staff couldn't have been nicer and once they'd shown us to our room and the spa, we felt a lot happier. It's very traditional which makes it a great ryokan - tatami floors, futon beds and yukata as well as the wonderful hot spring baths. The food was also wonderful with lots of regional touches and some of the history behind the dishes was so lovely to hear about. The staff were incredibly generous with their time in explaining everything and on our second night, they served us dinner in our room which was a fantastic experience - we went for Shabu shabu!
It's 5mins to the major sites and 15mins on the bus from the station so great location.
There is quite a variation in room size so it's worth going for the larger room! The small ones are really narrow.
People often recommend doing Nara as a day trip from Kyoto but stay over as there is so much to do and it's a much slower pace than Kyoto.
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