Feb 22, 2018
Kinoie: Sendai's Secluded Half-Day Getaway in Akiu
If you're looking for a little afternoon getaway from Sendai city, Akiu is always a good choice. With a number of fine hotels with excellent onsen, the space is considered one of the best areas for enjoying hot springs in Northern Japan. If all you have time for is coffee and a light meal, Kinoie is a good choice. The Japanese name is an easy translation for the early kanji learner (木の家, literally: house of trees, more naturally: wood house) and the place is a great choice for anyone needing to take a break from urban life.
The entrance from the parking lot after a winter snow. It can get icy so come prepared with snow boots if you want to enjoy the winter view.
Just a few of the pieces for sale outside the ceramics shops, priced to move.
In the shops on the way to the restaurant, hand-made cups, plates, mugs and others are available for purchase. The items are attractive and well made, so much so that they are frequently the reason for our drive out to this somewhat rustic destination. If you need a little something nice to send to a ceramic-lover in your life, these beautiful pieces will likely hit the mark and for far less than Sendai City prices in most cases.
The ceramic shops on the way to the restaurant.
My husband's delicious-looking, mushroom-filled nabe pot set. It was pretty tasty, even for my shroom-hating self.
The restaurant itself offers a few small selections, but does those few things pretty well. People don't really come here for the food, though. The view, in the middle of the woods overlooking the Natori River, is breathtaking.
The view from the walkway on the way to the restaurant.
The entrance to the cabin area, complete with helpful map.
In addition, the property has several cabins available for day trip and overnight rental starting from 10,000 yen per night in the off season. Entrance to the cabin area also requires a small fee (up to 1000 yen per adult) but they do offer group rates and infants are free. There are seventeen total cabins in twelve layouts to choose from, though reservations must be made by phone, fax, or email in Japanese. All other details available can be found on the website, though unfortunately the site is run almost entirely in Japanese save for a few navigational subheadings.
The trickiest part of these lovely out-of-the-way places is getting there. I recommend copying the address from the website and using a vehicular navigational system as the space is only fifteen minutes from the Sendai's South Entrance to the Tohoku Expressway. For travelers better suited to buses, Sendai Station's West Exit Bus Pool offers a ride leaving from stop number eight and heading to Akiu Onsen. Get off at Akiu Onsen Yumoto and walk for twenty minutes or take a taxi for two. In addition, taking one of the dozens of taxis from Sendai station will take but thirty minutes. Remember to write down the address or save the location to your phone for reference:
Maoto-2 Akiumachi Yumoto, Taihaku-ku, Sendai-shi, Miyagi-ken 982-0241
A working mom/writer/teacher, Jessica explores her surroundings in Miyagi-ken and Tohoku, enjoying the fun, quirky, and family friendly options the area has to offer.