Kinosaki Onsen is easily accessed by train, bus, car or even airplane.
From Kyoto, Osaka, Kobe and Himeji in particular you can ride express trains (JR) to Kinosaki that require only one or no transfers.
General Train Information
- The Hyperdia web site is very useful for finding train routes/times from one location to another.
Japan Guide has very useful information on how to use the rail system in Japan.
- Kinosaki can be accessed by all JR lines, so holders of a Japan Rail Pass or a Kansai Wide Rail Pass will be able to access Kinosaki with the pass.
- If you don’t have a pass, tickets for express trains can be purchased at major rail stations at the “midori madoguchi” ticket office or from ticket machines with English language menu options.
- From Kyoto, it takes about 2.5 to 3 hours to reach Kinosaki by express train.
- The Limited Express Kinosaki runs some direct trains to Kinosaki from Kyoto Station, but sometimes they only go as far as Toyooka City (two stops from Kinosaki). In that case you can transfer to any train (even local) on the Kinosaki Onsen / Tottori line and you will reach Kinosaki Onsen in just a few minutes.
- Another option is to take an express train from Kyoto to either Fukuchiyama or Osaka/Shin-Osaka and transfer to another express train at those stations.
Those routes should require only one, simple change of trains and are usually about as fast as the direct trains.
- Kinosaki Onsen is easily reached by train from either Osaka Station (in downtown Osaka) or Shin-Osaka Station, the bullet train station located near Osaka Station.
- The Limited Express Hamakaze or the Limited Express Kounotori trains are usually the fastest and run directly to Kinosaki Onsen. They take about 2.5 hours.
- The main train station in downtown Kobe is Sannomiya Station.
- Look for the Hamakaze Limited Express trains which run directly to Kinosaki Onsen and take about 2.5 hours.
- Look for the Limited Express Hamakaze train, which runs directly to Kinosaki Onsen and takes about 2 hours.
From Kansai International Airport (KIX)
- From Kansai International Airport you can easily get by train to Osaka, Shin-Osaka or Kyoto Station.
From there, take any limited express train as detailed above.
- To save money, you could also take an airport limousine bus to Osaka, Kyoto, Kobe (Sannomiya) or Himeji and catch a train from there.
From Hiroshima / Okayama
- Coming from the direction of Hiroshima/Okayama by train, the easiest way to reach Kinosaki Onsen would be to take a bullet train (shinkansen) to a major station like Himeji, Shin-Osaka or Kyoto and transfer to a limited express train.
- Many visitors to Japan arrive through Tokyo, and although the distance may seem great it is actually not very difficult to reach the tranquility of Kinosaki Onsen even from the metropolis of Tokyo.
- By train, you could take a bullet train (shinkansen) to either Kyoto or Shin-Osaka and then take a limited express train, as detailed above.
- Traveling by airplane is actually an option too. You could take a flight from Haneda Airport (central Tokyo) to Osaka International Airport (Itami) and then transfer to a commuter flight to Tajima Airport which is in Toyooka, right next to Kinosaki. From the Tajima Airport there is bus service which goes directly to Kinosaki Onsen.
Day Trip Access
- For the full experience, spending a night or two at a local ryokan is recommended but Kinosaki can also be enjoyed in a day trip.
- For day trips, the easiest starting points are Kyoto, Osaka/Kobe or Himeji. Catch an early limited express train, spend the day in Kinosaki and then catch an evening limited express train back to the city.
- Traveling by bus can be a very economical way to reach Kinosaki Onsen, yet also relatively easy for foreign visitors to use.
- Highway Buses that run direct to Kinosaki Onsen depart from Osaka (Umeda Station, right next to JR Osaka Station) or Kobe (bus terminal next to Sannomiya Station).
Each route runs about three times day and takes an average of three hours to reach Kinosaki Onsen.
- The name of the bus company that operates the highway bus to Kinosaki is "Zentan Bus".
- The Tajima Airport in Toyooka, right next to Kinosaki, provides air service to Osaka International Airport (Itami Airport) in Osaka.
- The flight is a short, commuter flight that takes about 40 minutes.
- From the Tajima Airport there is bus service direct to Kinosaki Onsen.
- Many foreign visitors will probably prefer to travel by train or bus, but driving on Japan's well maintained and modern roadways gives you a chance to see the country side up close.
In particular driving in more rural areas such as Kinosaki Onsen is much easier (and less confusing!) than driving in the large cities, and thanks to an extensive highway and expressway network it is actually quite easy to reach Kinosaki by car.
- From Kyoto take the Kyoto Jukan Expressway for Fukuchiyama.
The expressway will end before Fukuchiyama, but just follow the signs to Fukuchiyama (route 9).
In Fukuchiyama stay on route 9 and follow the signs to Wadayama/Yabu. Eventually you will see signs for Tooyoka (route 312).
Follow those signs into Toyooka and from there onto Kinosaki Onsen.
In average traffic the drive will take a little over three hours.
- From Osaka/Kobe area take the Chugoku Expressway headed towards Hiroshima and get onto the Maizuru-Wakasa Expressway at the Yokawa Junction.
From there, drive to the Kasuga Interchange and get onto the KitaKinki Toyo-oka Expressway.
Drive that expressway to the very end and when you get off follow the signs into Toyooka (route 312) and then onto Kinosaki Onsen.
In average traffic the drive takes about three to three and a half hours.
Hotel Shuttle Bus
- A common shuttle bus used by many of the ryokan in Kinosaki can take you to your ryokan from Kinosaki Station.
- Just tell the bus driver the name of your ryokan when boarding.
The shuttle bus is free of charge.