Kinosaki Inspirations

Kinosaki Plus 1: A Day in Kannabe

  • It could happen to anyone: a memorable trip to the hot springs in Kinosaki Onsen proved more than enough to quell your worries and musings about the future workdays and obligations to come, but you’re not quite ready to say farewell to the land of hot springs, yukata, and Japan’s best beef. A one-day add-on (or two or three, depending on how many areas you want to explore) is just what you need in one of Kinosaki Onsen’s surrounding little towns.

    Totally understandable by our standards. You want to get the most out of your trip to Northern Hyogo, no shame in that! Kinosaki Onsen is the place to start your journey, but we recommend you venture out to one of the many towns dotting the area that still remain widely untouched by international tourism.

    For getting to and around Kannabe, a rental car is the most convenient option. You can rent one in Kinosaki Onsen for the day or for an enitre 24 hours. Pick your car up in front of Kinosaki Onsen Station and you're good to go!

  • A 1 hour drive from Kinosaki Onsen, home to three ski resorts, over 30 waterfalls, numerous cozy inns and oh yeah, Toyooka’s only cat cafe (serious recommend for cat and caffeine lovers). Lucky for you, our guide includes all of these plus more.

  • 1 Day in Kannabe: Our Guide

  • Uemura Naomi Memorial Museum

  • Test your strength and relive your school days with a 25kg backpack.

    Before jumping into the bread and butter Kannabe’s famed outdoor adventures, we guarantee you’ll enjoy them even more after learning about Uemura Naomi, a world-renowned adventurer originally from the area.

    Exhibits include postcards Naomi wrote to family and friends, equipment used during his adventures, and hands-on activities for children and adults such as a climbable dogsled, tent, and a 25 kg backpack visitors can try and carry like Naomi did on his trips.

  • Brought along kids? Bring them over to Donguri Base, an indoor and outdoor play area behind the Uemura Naomi Memorial Museum surrounded by the natural greenery of Kannabe’s forests.

    Don’t tire them out too much, because your next adventure starts either on the hardened lava trek nearby Mount Kannabe, or climbing up the volcano-turned-mountain itself.

    And don’t forget to charge yourself up for the day with Museum Cafe iNUUK’s Starbucks brew.

  • Volcano Hiking

  • When traveling, who doesn’t love slowing down from time to time?

    Now that you got the down-low on Kannabe’s very own world-famous adventurer and the area he grew up in, we’ll give you the info on the best hiking course near Kinosaki Onsen for those that want to take it slow: climb to the top of Kannabe’s landmark volcano (now Mount Kannabe) and trace its inactive crater.

  • You may come to a halt reading “take it slow” and “climb to the top of a volcano” but hear us out: Mount Kannabe only takes 20~30 minutes to climb! Not to mention, the smooth grassy topography of this volcano-turned-mountain provides the ideal walking terrain for all ages as opposed to other uneven rocky climbs.

  • No lava, just silver grass!
    No lava, just silver grass!

    At the top, you’ll be rewarded with a grade-A view of the surrounding highland town below as well as the dramatic mountainscapes in the distance. As you trace the crater, you’ll find quite an unexpected piece of architecture standing proudly amongst the trees:

  • An ancient pyramid? Nope, it’s a shrine!
    An ancient pyramid? Nope, it’s a shrine!

    Kannabe Shrine is a guardian shrine for Mount Kannabe and the town below, with ceremonies held annually to pray for the safety of those visiting the mountain. Its unique triangular shape is an extremely rare design for a Japanese Shinto Shrine, making it a must-see during any trip to Kannabe.

  • Looking for an adrenaline rush? Try out volcanic rock trekking.

  • Visiting in winter? Swap out a hike for snowshoeing.

  • A Cozy Hideaway with Rustic Meals

  • After heading down from Mount Kannabe, hop back into your car for a quick 2-minute drive over to Waraku, a hidden gem of a restaurant serving meals with locally sourced veggies and meat.

  • Getting storybook vibes upon entry? You’re not the only one!
    Getting storybook vibes upon entry? You’re not the only one!
  • We recommend first-timers to try out the special crab course, not only a classic to the region but also a sustainable, local-friendly option given that the ingredients used alongside the crab are grown right here in Kannabe. Crab not your thing? There’s always soba (buckwheat noodles), beef, and veggies on the menu.

  • After a round of laughs and good eats with your travel buddies, give yourself a moment to digest, thank the chef and head back to your car for a drive back to Kannabe Kogen Roadside Station.

  • Yutorogi Onsen

  • Who says you can’t have another hot spring soak after leaving Kinosaki? Kannabe has you covered with their indoor and outdoor hot springs baths at Yutorogi Onsen inside Kannabe Kogen Roadside Station. After a hike up Mount Kannabe and a multi-course lunch, we highly encourage you to take a minute and rest your feet and mind at this local hot spring hangout.

  • Tip: Don’t just end your visit at the hot spring, take a look into the connecting souvenir shop and pick up some gifts for your friends back home (or for yourself, we won’t judge)!

    One of Kannabe’s must-buys are without a doubt their cabbage chips, lovingly packaged inside a bag adorned with the local mascot Kannabe Kanna. These chips are available for purchase of course, but those with a penchant for arcade games may want to try their luck at the world’s only cabbage chip UFO-catcher!

  • The myth and the legend.
    The myth and the legend.
  • Your Lodging: Blue Ridge Hotel

  • Another 2-minute drive from Kannabe Kogen Roadside Station will land you at Blue Ridge Hotel, one of Kannabe’s largest hotels equipped with an outdoor garden, restaurant, pool, and hot spring. Check into your room and kick back for a bit before heading downstairs for a buffet-style Japanese dinner at 19:30. We know the lunch you had at Waraku was huge, but we promise the minute you see Blue Ridge’s buffet spread your appetite will be back with a vengeance.

  • Reason #2 why we suggested a conbini breakfast
    Reason #2 why we suggested a conbini breakfast

    Feeling sleepy after your unlimited buffet? Most likely, but before crawling into bed for a quiet country night’s sleep, have your evening bath under the stars in Blue Ridge’s outdoor hot spring.

  • A furry farewell: Cat Cafe Idol Zoo

    After checking out of Blue Ridge Hotel, charge up your morning with a coffee or tea at a cozy cafe near Ebara Station. A favorite with locals and especially families, Cat Cafe Idol Zoo not only has great drinks but also, you guessed it, cats.

  • 800 yen will give you 40 minutes to start your morning with over 10 furry feline friends and a drink of your choosing. After playing to your heart’s content (and perhaps choosing a favorite cat), end your visit, receive a sticker of your favorite cat (no joke), and head back by car to Kinosaki Onsen.

  • About

    Danielle Leveille

    Danielle Leveille

    Junior Local Expert

    Originally from Chicago in the USA. She currently works for Visit Kinosaki as a coordinator for international relations. A lover of Tajima beef and hidden sightseeing spots, she can be found either at one of her favorite restaurants or exploring a secret nook in town.