Gamo-gun - 蒲生郡

Gamono no Yu

Japanese Name: 蒲生野の湯Prefecture: ShigaCity: GamoAddress: 滋賀県蒲生郡竜王町山之上7104-1Type: Supersento w/ natural hot springWebpage: ¥750 (Saturdays: ¥850, Sundays & Holidays: ¥880)Holiday: Third ThursdayHours: 10:00-22:00
ReviewIn the search for the real, handmade non-homogenized in this world you can find many sento, but not so many supersento. Most of them are parts of chains, are connected to a larger parent corporation or have some other sense of the place being somewhat cookie-cutter. Gamono no Yu is one of the few really hand-built looking supersentos. This is all my conjecture, but it looks like the entire thing was the vision of one person--for better or worse. Thankfully most of that is in the better side. The baths here are small but accommodating and comfortable. There's a shallow heated spring water bath and a lukewarm straight well water bath outside. Both are incredible, of course I love the straight water one. I wish didn't live a 20 dollar highway toll away. Besides the great water, I like this bath for its handmade feel. There are haphazardly looking placed pipes going in and out of the building and the lockers look more like they should be in an factory break room for two examples. It is all good though. It gives it the charm of hot spring hotels back in the USA or even further out in the Japanese countryside. Look out for the sign in the large outdoor bath that warns bathers that the water might get cloudy if a earthquake happens nearby.
2019 October Update: Still a great place with a quality spring. The warm water bath is worth the trip. Also there is a new casual restaurant on the site that was great value for money.
Hot Spring DataWell Name: Gamono no Sato Onsen - 蒲生野の里温泉Type: Radioactive spring - 放射能泉pH: 8Type: Weak alkaline - 弱アリカリ性Well Temperature: 38.8°CType: Hot spring - 温泉Osmotic Pressure: Low - 低張性