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A Shimotsuke ryokan is a place to relax, unwind and really feel the pulse of traditional Japanese culture. With a history that dates back millennia, these classic inns ooze a character you're bound not to forget in a hurry. They're built in a centuries-old style, with timber frames and sliding paper doors, straw-mat tatami flooring and wooden interiors that really help to get the Zen vibes flowing. You'll be greeted with a bow, be asked to remove your shoes and settle in rooms with low-lying futon beds and just a smattering of minimalist furniture where boutique tea sets constitute the only clutter in sight. It's certainly a far-cry from your usual hotel.
Many ryokans also follow the traditional Japanese way of having communal spa spaces – sometimes even in lieu ensuite bathrooms. They often channel the bubbling hot springs of the mountains that rise all around, while others – those in cities and towns – tend to have timber-built bath tubs. Days can be spend chatting with the owner while wandering the outdoor gardens in a comfy yukata robe – both common additions to ryokans. The upshot is that you can expect a truly authentic and immersive expereince from all the Shimotsuke Ryokan on ebookers.
Another famous aspect of Shimotsuke Ryokan is the food. There's almost always a kitchen attached to these sorts of stays – they were once roadside inns for travellers making their way across rural Japan, after all. The cuisine is invariably haute Japanese cooking, which means a gleaming array of jewel-like sashimi platters and meticulously cut fish dishes, of vinegar-infused salads and sake the likes of which you may never have tasted before.
Ryokans have long been associated with the wilder side of Japan. It's not uncommon to find these sorts of stays in the heart of big cities, but it's much more likely that they'll sit somewhere out in the countryside. These days, many local Japanese will choose a ryokan specifically for an escape from the metropolises. So, don't be surprised if your chosen Shimotsuke ryokan is in the shadow of pine-dressed peaks, next to bubbling hot springs, or plumed with highland snow. It's all part of the reason why these stays lend themselves to an immersive and different experience of Japan.
Whether you're looking for uber-deluxe ryokans with bubbling spa pools in every suite, or a rustic spot that oozes centuries-old character from its straw-clad rooms, you can rest assured that the wide range of places to stay on ebookers.com has you covered. When it comes to booking the top Shimotsuke Ryokan, all you need to do is enter the dates you plan on travelling and filter out the options that don't suit your requirements. You can even make use of our handy travel map, which lets you zoom in and out of particular neighbourhoods to pinpoint the establishment that's perfect for you.