Sakura no Yu is a clean and reasonably priced bath house that was built relatively recently. It is located on a main street, but has a quiet atmosphere and visitors include both men and women, young and old.
The large bath is fairly spacious compared to baths at other traditional Japanese bath houses. It has a seating area with jets for your back and legs and also a section with bubbling water that you can submerge yourself in to ease your aching muscles.
The type of water in the smaller bath is rotated on a daily basis, allowing you to enjoy bath soaks such as lavender, lemon, floral, and more.
Hours: 15:00 (3pm) – 22:00 (10pm)
Prices: ¥400 for entry
*Amenities such as shampoo and soap are not provided, so please bring your own or purchase some at the front desk.
A set of shampoo, conditioner, soap, and a towel costs ¥300 altogether (Items are sold individually).*
Other items available: hairdryer, lockers, vending machines
1-4-14 Metoba, Matsumoto, Nagano 390-0806
From Matsumoto Bus Terminal platform 3, you can take the 31/30 Utsukushigahara Onsen Line Bus bound for Utsukushigahara Onsen. (This bus runs until 9:45 pm on weekdays and 8:45 pm on weekends/holidays.) Get off at Sakuramachi. It takes about 13 minutes and costs ¥200.
From Matsumoto Station, you can take the 100 North City Bus bound for Jidosha Gakko and get off at Shimizu Nakaku. The ride takes about 8 minutes and costs ¥200. From that stop you will turn left at the light then cross the bridge.
Walking: The bath house is about a 22-minute walk from Matsumoto Station’s East Exit, but only about a 12-minute walk from Matsumoto Castle.
It is also walking distance from a number of hostels, so if you are staying around the Castle it’s an easy location to reach!
Parking: For those who drive, the parking lot is just across the street.
Bathing Etiquette and Tips
Here are a few tips to help make your bathing experience more enjoyable:
– Put your belongings in a locker and/or a wicker basket. (Be sure to put valuables in a locker. The bath house will not be responsible for stolen items.)
– Bathing with bathing suits or clothes on is not allowed.
– Be sure to wash your body first before entering the bath. There is no set order, but many people wash their body, warm themselves in the bath, then proceed to wash their hair and so forth.
– It is common to bring a small towel in the bathing area, but don’t put your bath towel in the water.
– Water temperatures can be quite hot, so take breaks. You may start to feel light headed and dizzy after more than a few minutes.
– When returning to the changing room, be sure to dry your body off near the doorway so you don’t get the floor wet.
– A common way to cool down after the bath is with a nice, refreshing bottle of milk!