Photo of Matsumoto

About Matsumoto

Steeped in history and awash with gorgeous architecture, Matsumoto is the second-largest city in the Nagano Prefecture. Famed for its beautiful castle, a wealth of museums and charming streets lined with boutiques and traditional ryokan (inns), it is the ideal destination for history-lovers looking to soak in some authentic Japanese culture. Our collection of the best places to stay in Matsumoto range from traditional properties to high-end luxury.

The streets of Matsumoto are peaceful and picturesque, rendering visitors with the inescapable belief that they are in a quaint town, not a bustling metropolis. At Nawate-Dori, an old shopping street, you will find small boutiques and antique shops, while at Nakamachi-Dori, a street lined with picturesque white houses, you will find lots of old ryokan (inns) and gourmet restaurants. By mid-April, the cherry blossom or "sakura" is in full bloom and enchantingly adorn the grounds of Matsumoto Castle, as well as the rest of the city.

Matsumoto Castle lies at the epicentre of the city's heritage, long-considered one of Japan's most astoundingly beautiful and original castles. Complete with turrets, a keep and tower, it is one of Japan's few castles that lie on flatland and not the crest of a hill: staff walk about the grounds dressed in the trappings of a Samurai warrior and provide entertaining and informative guided tours. The museum itself is wonderful because it teems with ancient artefacts, armour and weaponry. Be sure to also visit the Jorinji Shrine, featuring the oldest gate in the city.

In terms of museums, you are truly spoilt for choice. Matsumoto has a reputation as a great patron of the arts and its collections are no different: the Ukiyoe Museum, for example, is one of the world's largest private collections of art; the Museum of Art is also spectacular, displaying fine pieces of classical and contemporary artworks. For an afternoon excursion, consider heading out to Japan's largest Wasabi farm - 15 hectares - featuring watermills and guided tours along the waterways.

What not to miss

  • Go for a shopping spree down Nawate-Dori.
  • Check out the ancient Jorinji Shrine.
  • Explore the beautiful grounds and castle of Matsumoto.
  • For a bite-to-eat, head out towards Nakamachi-Dori, with its lovely old inns and restaurants.
  • If you're there in mid-April, marvel at the brightening of the city when the cherry blossom is in full bloom.
  • Take a guided tour around the Daio Wasabi farm.
  • Visit the Ukiyoe Museum, one of the world's largest collections of private art!

Matsumoto bristles with life, colour and culture and is the ideal spot for a city break. Browse through our collection of the best places to stay in Matsumoto to start planning your trip.

The best places to stay in Matsumoto

Value for money

  • Tsuki No Shizuka Ryokan: a small, traditional Japanese inn featuring rooms that blend classic and Japanese styles, featuring tatami mats, high beamed ceilings and western beds. The restaurant serves great local fare, and it features a traditional wooden hot spring bath.

Chic boutique

  • Hotel Tamanoyu: a stylish boutique hotel offering smart and minimalist rooms with huge beds and the best have hot spring baths. The restaurant serves up fantastic regional dishes. Great for couples looking for seclusion and authenticity.
  • Oiwakeya Ryokan: a traditional inn in the heart of the city. Offering classic Japanese-style rooms with futons and paper shutters. Featuring a selection of hot spring baths, the regional cuisine served in the restaurant is to-die-for.

City style

  • Buena Vista: a large and sleek hotel in the heart of the city, offering smart and contemporary rooms boasting beautiful views of the Japanese Alps, and a restaurant serving a variety of national cuisines. Great for businessmen.

Pure luxury

  • Yumotoya: an authentic and traditional ryokan in the centre of the city, offering simple but elegant rooms with roll down futons and tatami matting. Regional cuisine is served in the excellent restaurant.
  • Tobira Onsen Myojinkan: a fantastic retreat in the arms of nature, it is located a few miles outside of the city. Guests can enjoy either Japanese or Western-style accommodation, as well as fine dining at the amazing gourmet restaurant.

For an apartment or villa

  • Check out our partner Booking.com if you're looking for self-catering accommodation.

Travel information

  • Fly to Fukuoka Airport and get a transfer to Matsumoto.
  • If you want to rent a car we recommend contacting our partner Rentalcars.
  • The best time to go is between April and September when the cherry blossom is in full bloom.

Still not sure?


Monthly Weather in Matsumoto

Best Hotels in Matsumoto

  • Tsuki No Shizuka Ryokan Matsumoto (Nagano) 10 rooms from €71

    Total relaxation  -  Boasting a natural hot spring bath known for their healing properties.
    Local exploring  -  Well located to access some of Matsumoto's main attractions.
    Sights nearby  -  Located a short drive from the famed Matsumoto Castle.
    Full of character
    Air conditioningRestaurantGardenParkingNo pets

    A traditional Ryokan (Japanese inn) featuring a historic hot water spring bath. Charmingly decorated throughout with a mix of classic Japanese and contemporary styles; think beamed ceilings, tatami mats, wooden baths and western beds. Regional dishes are served in the dining room. Superb. See More

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  • Buena Vista Matsumoto (Nagano) 190 rooms from €116

    Local exploring  -  Located in the heart of the city with easy access to its main attractions.
    Sights nearby  -  Visit the striking Matsumoto Castle built over 400yrs ago.
    Great walks  -  Stroll along Naka-Machi Street full of traditional shops.
    Views  -  Great views from hotel
    Air conditioningRestaurantViewsParkingNo pets

    A sleek hotel located in the heart of the city. Simply dressed rooms are all white on white with crisp linen and large windows, the best of which have views onto the Japan Alps. A range of restaurants offer everything from Japanese to French cuisines. A chic base to explore the city from. See More

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  • Hotel Tamanoyu Matsumoto (Nagano) 17 rooms from €129

    Local exploring  -  Well located to access Matsumoto's main attractions.
    Total relaxation  -  Boasting both indoor and outdoor hot spring baths.
    Sights nearby  -  Make a trip to the impressive Matsumoto Castle.
    Romantic  -  Good for couples.
    Air conditioningRestaurantGardenDisabled accessParkingNo pets

    A boutique property offering contemporary Japanese style. Smart rooms are minimalist in design with enormous windows, sink-into western beds, low level dining tables and the best have hot spring baths. The restaurant serves up superlative regional dishes. A chic city base. See More

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  • Oiwakeya Ryokan Matsumoto 13 rooms from €162

    Local exploring  -  Well located to access some of Matsumoto's best sights.
    Great walks  -  Stroll along the shores of the scenic Misuzu Lake.
    Sights nearby  -  Be sure to visit the striking Matsumoto Castle.
    Air conditioningGardenParkingNo pets

    A traditional Ryokan in central Matsumoto. Japanese styled rooms are light and airy with large windows, paper shutters, floor level seating and roll down futons. Boasting a selection of healing hot spring baths, regional cuisine and easy access to the city's main attractions. An authentic stay. See More

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  • Yumotoya Matsumoto (Nagano) 63 rooms from €326

    Local exploring  -  Centrally located with easy access to many of the city's main attractions.
    Sights nearby  -  Visit the austere looking Matsumoto Castle, just 10 minutes from the property.
    Great walks  -  Head out of the city and take longs walks in the scenic Kamikōchi area.
    Air conditioningRestaurantParkingNo pets

    A traditional ryokan offering an authentic experience in central Matsumoto. Rooms are well proportioned and simply styled with tatami matting, low level dining tables and roll down futons. Regional cuisine is served in the elegant restaurant. An ideal base to explore the city from. See More

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  • Tobira Onsen Myojinkan Matsumoto (Matsumoto-shi) 45 rooms from €550

    Romantic Break  -  A wonderful location, great cuisine and lovely accommodation-ideal for a romantic getaway
    Total relaxation  -  Tobira Onsen Myojinkan enjoys a wonderfully serene rural location outside the city
    Great walks  -  Head off on beautiful long walks around the area
    Sights nearby  -  The historic Matsumoto Castle is a must visit
    Air conditioningSpaRestaurantViewsParking
    Recommended by  -  Relais & Chateaux, Kiwi Collection

    The tranquil Tobira Onsen Myojinkan is located a few miles outside Matsumoto. Choose between Japanese or Western style accommodation whilst meals at the restaurant (offering a range of traditional kaiseki, modern Japanese and French cuisine) are a great! A fabulous retreat with beautiful onsens. See More

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