Photo of Iwate

About Iwate

Iwate is the most easterly prefecture on Japan's main island of Honshu. Quiet and remote, this is a land of dramatic scenery. Rocky cliffs give way to the Pacific Ocean in the east, whilst the western Ōu Mountains are home to a number of active volcanoes. The Kitakimi River, Japan's fourth longest, runs right through the prefecture, creating lush, fertile landscapes. Our selection of the best places to stay in Iwate includes private hideaways as well as a restful spa retreat, designed to encourage guests to immerse themselves in the region’s abundant natural beauty.

Morioka, Iwate’s capital, is a city of just 270,000 people, and the wider region is sparsely populated. Historic hubs include the ancient city of Hiraizumi, an 11th and 12th-century political centre and now a protected UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Chūson-ji and Mōtsū-ji Temples are particular highlights, as are the city’s beautiful gardens. To the north-east, Tōno’s Old Tales Village delves into the origins of the region’s myths and legends. Keen hikers, bird watchers and wildlife enthusiasts will adore the forests and expansive vistas of the Ōu Mountains, Geibikei Gorge and Genbikei Gorge. Soak up the sunshine at white-pebbled Jodogahama Beach in Miyako Bay, where craggy islands rise from tranquil waters. This part of the Sanriku Fukkō National Park is especially picturesque.

The Iwate region’s other big draw is its hot springs. The best places to stay in Iwate promise healing onsen soaks, restorative massages and delectable regional cuisine. If you’re dreaming of a restful Japanese escape, look no further!

The Best Places to Stay in Iwate

For a Wellness Retreat

  • Yamado Ryokan has 12 contemporary guest suites with private outdoor baths and beautiful views. A lovely getaway for couples or wellness enthusiasts, this superb spa hotel offers rejuvenating treatments, flavoursome regional cuisine and access to hiking and biking trails aplenty. Idyllic.


  • If you'd prefer a self-catering option, we suggest that you visit our online partner Booking.com.

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Best Hotels in Iwate

  • Ana Intercontinental Appi Kogen Iwate from £344

    Back to Nature  -  Wake to tranquil mountain vistas, in rooms where luxury meets the pristine beauty of Appi Kogen
    Romantic Break  -  Dive into luxury at the rooftop hot springs, under a canopy of stars in Appi's serene night sky
    Active Holiday  -  Active travellers rejoice: award-winning slopes and rejuvenating hot springs to unwind
    Restaurant  -  Feast on farm-fresh flavours at SHIRATSUYU, where Japanese meets French in a culinary ballet
    Air conditioningSpaRestaurantDisabled accessViewsParkingNo pets

    This 5* gem marries luxury with alpine splendour, in the heart of Hachimantai. Inside, the decor syncs with nature, offering a serene, modern vibe. Boasting a world-class ski resort, onsen, & a farm-to-table dining experience, it's an oasis of indulgence. A perfect blend of opulence and adventure. See More

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  • Kashoen Hanamaki, Iwate 50 rooms from £277

    Local exploring  -  In Hanamaki City, explore the Kenji Miyazawa Fairy Tale Village and the Hanamaki Nitobe Memorial Museum
    Total relaxation  -  There are several hot spring baths, relaxed in-room dining and a tranquil garden
    Great walks  -  The Hachimantai Mountaintop Trail Course tours the summit of Mt. Hachimantai and promises breathtaking scenery
    Sights nearby  -  Close to the Dai Hot Spring and 13 km from Hanamaki Large Park
    Air conditioningGardenDisabled accessViewsParkingNo pets

    A relaxed ryokan near Hanamaki. The spacious rooms in soft neutral tones offer Japanese or Western styles, some with private open-air baths. There's a chic lounge with courtyard views, plus a lush garden and communal baths. Seasonal Japanese multi-course meals are served in rooms. A peaceful stay. See More

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  • Yamado Ryokan Waga-gun, Iwate Prefecture 12 rooms from £436

    Total relaxation  -  Hot spring baths, massages and traditional spa treatments await: this is an idyllic wellness retreat
    Back to Nature  -  Nestled in the mountains and situated next to a river, this is a peaceful spot for nature lovers
    Great walks  -  Follow wooded trails along the mountainsides, spotting beautiful flora and fauna on long walks
    Museums  -  Kawamura Art Museum is a short 10-minute drive away and hosts some fantastic exhibitions
    Air conditioningSpaRestaurantGardenViewsParkingNo pets

    A spa resort offering just twelve guest suites. Rooms are traditional and simple in style and boasts a private semi open-air bath flowing with 100% natural hot spring water. Feast on exemplary local culinary delights of northern Tohoku and unwind in the tranquil mountain surrounds. See More

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