Gero Onsen: Japan's Hidden Gem

Nestled in the heart of Japan, Gero Onsen is a hidden gem waiting to be discovered by travelers seeking an authentic Japanese experience. This legendary hot spring is situated in the picturesque Hida River basin and lauded as one of the country's top three hot springs since the Muromachi period (1336-1573). 
The charming resort town of Gero Onsen beautifully blends the lively energy of its bustling entertainment district with the serene ambiance of a traditional mountain village. This unique atmosphere is sure to enchant visitors who venture to this captivating corner of Japan.

Gero Onsen's Outdoor Baths and Foot Spas

Gero Onsen offers three public bathhouses and an enchanting open-air bath called Funsen-chi, located along the picturesque Hida River. These outdoor hot springs provide the perfect opportunity to soak in healing waters while enjoying the beauty of the surrounding area. While exploring the resort town, you can also find several free foot baths that allow you to easily indulge in the therapeutic properties of Gero Onsen’s hot springs.  

Spring Quality

Simple (Simple Alkaline Hot Spring) Try and see how smooth the water is.


Heals rheumatism, sports injuries, nerve pain, and helps with recovery from illness. The 9.2 pH levels in the water have a cleaning effect that will give you smoother skin and make it look healthier.

Management System

In order to provide the highest quality of water, the hot springs in Gero established a centralized management system in 1971, which became operational in 1974.

Reasons to Visit Gero

Hot Springs

Gero has a 1,000-year history. Legend says that an injured white egret revealed the hidden source of the hot springs. It was called one of the best three hot springs by Banri Shuku, a Zen monk in the Muromachi era, and Razan Hayashi, a philosopher in the Edo period. The source temperature is 84℃ high and a final temperature is 55℃. Gero Hot Spring is called bijin-no-yu [hot spring that will make you beautiful] because of the smooth texture of its water. There are more than 50 ryokans (Japanese inns) and hotels in Gero. (Spring Quality: simple alkaline hot spring Effects: helps with rheumatism, motor function disorders, nerve pain, and makes you more beautiful.


If you want to have more casual bath experience, footbaths are a great choice. If you are tired of exploring the town, take a break at a footbath. Refresh yourself at a footbath and go back to exploring the town again. It's the Gero way.


In Gero, there are many hotels and inns that you can relax. Choose hotels which suit you the best.
Hotel Association English Homepage

Sake: Japanese Rice Wine

Gero's local sake is made from fresh water and good quality rice. It's hand-made by local artisans. Many brands such as Jyunmai or Nigori are available and they all taste different. Each brand is named after the seasons or a nearby location. In Gero, there are shops which have a variety of local sake from around the Gero and Hida areas.

Hida Beef

Hida Beef is a popular high-end beef. At "The 8th National Japanese Beef Contest," where all great Japanese cows are gathered to compete, Hida-beef was awarded the Prime Minister's Award, the highest award of all, and the Best Meat Award, proving that it is the best beef in Japan. Because of its smooth and well-marbled texture, Hida Beef is soft and rich in taste. There are many cattle ranches in Gero that handle calf breeding and fattening-up. Raising high-quality beef takes a community effort.

Gassho Village

Gasho village is home to kyu-ootoke-jutaku, a nationally designated important tangible folk cultural asset, which was transferred from Shirakawa Go Village, along with ten other gassho-style houses. It is a great place to learn how people used to live. You can see the inside of the folklore museum, Iwasaki House, and registered tangible cultural property, Oyama House, Itakura. At Hida Koubou, you can try making pottery and drawing on Japanese paper. Nearby you'll also find, Ichikura, where you can try local dishes and Saijiki-no-Mori, a mountain village with cherry blossoms and maples. It's the perfect example of the country lifestyle.

Ideyu Asaichi

Ideyu Asaichi is a local market which offers many reasonable local items such as pickles, local liquors, handicrafts, etc. from the beginning of March to the beginning of December.


As you listen to the sound of the Hida River, at Funsen-chi, you can enjoy the source of Gero Hot Springs to your heart's content. It is an outside bath with nothing to block your view, and it will make you feel absolutely free. Even it is in the middle of the town, many people come to bathe. You must wear a swimsuit when you take a bath here.

Rental Cycles

At Gero City Tourist Information Center, you can rent an electric bicycle. Cost: 1 day/¥1000—half-day (4 hours)/¥600 Extension fee: 1 hours/¥200 Operating Hours: 9am–5pm Reception: Gero City Sightseeing Information (by Gero Station) * No reservations * Must be at least 129cm (4.2ft) tall * Must provide ID (passport accepted) * Must return bicycle within operating hours
English pamphlet available


Pick fresh tomatoes, make soba by hand, or try on a kimono and take a stroll through town. Gero has lots of exclusive experiences for you to try. Make the most of your trip to Gero!
Exciting Experience Program (available only in Japanese) Gero/Minami Hida Adventure Spots (available only in Japanese)

Hot Spring Manners

  • First, rinse your body outside the bathtub with some water from the tap or the bathtub using a washbowl.

  • Wash your whole body with soap.

  • After rinsing all the soap off your body, tidy up the area and enter the tub for a soak.

  • After you finished soaking, don't rinse your body with tap water. This will preserve the spring minerals and ensure you get the full effect of the spring water's benefits.

Bonus Tips

  • If you don't feel comfortable naked in front of other people, you can ask for a private bath.

  • Note that the bath water can be very hot. If it feels too hot, you can add some cold water, but only after checking with anyone who's already in the bath.

  • You can bring a small towel into the bathing area. But once you enter the bathtub, keep the towel out of the water.

  • Do not drain the bathtub water.



Kanayama-cho flourished as a highway town during the Edo Period. It was often referred to as "The Gateway to Hida". It retains its pre-modern style even now. The area is home to an ancient power spot known as Kanayama kyosekigun. Ancient people used the large rock formation and its interactions with sunlight to understand the changing of the seasons. There are popular guided tours that you can take part in. Other popular activities in Kanayama include rock collecting inside an ancient mine and kayak tours of the local dam and adjoining lake.

Kanayama-cho Tourism Bureau


Osaka-cho, 98% of which is surrounded by trees, has more than 200 waterfalls created by the volcanic activity of Mt. Ontake. A tour with a local guide to see these falls and climb the canyons will give you the idea of being in the nature. In winter, there is a tour to go and see the frozen falls. Also, Osaka has naturally high-density carbonated spring water which is hard to find in Japan, so you can enjoy bathing or food cooked with the carbonated spring.

Hida Osaka Tourism Bureau


Many mountains including the Maze River are the source of local hot springs, and Maze is a member of the "Most Beautiful Village Association" due to its beautiful natural environment and historical assets. Field activities, canyon climbing, catching fish by hand, and blueberry picking are popular activities here. Maze's sweet fish won the first prize in a nationwide competition, so it's definitely worth checking out! In summer, many people visit Maze to enjoy fishing.

Minami Hida Mazegawa Tourism Bureau


Hagiwara-cho flourished as a highway town. In the center of the town, there are many historical places including a sake brewery established during the Edo period. From summer to autumn, they hold a morning market every Friday. Many people enjoy shopping at the stores with lots of fresh local vegetables and specialties. More than 20 famous cherry trees including Iwataro no Shidare Zakura are here, so naturally, there are cherry blossom festivals and a cherry blossom walk in spring.

Hagiwara-cho Tourism Bureau

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