Miyajima, Japan

At a Glance

  • The best Ryokan on the picturesque island of Miyajima

  • The original part of the inn dates back to 1854

  • Perfect for seafood lovers, they specialise in oysters, black rockfish and conger eels

  • Communal onsen (hot-spring baths) with picturesque views onto the forest

  • Complimentary shuttle bus from Miyajima ferry port to the property

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Best time to Visit

Good time to visit

Average time to visit

Spring and autumn are the best times to travel, with the delicate cherry blossom or turning leaves adding a gorgeous hue to the scenery. The cherry blossom begins its journey northward in mid-March, reaching Kyoto and Tokyo by early April, and finally arriving in Sapporo by early May. The autumn leaves reverse the pattern, touching the high peaks of Hokkaido in mid-October and marching steadily south to Kyoto by mid-November.

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Insider's View

Most restaurants on the island close around 5pm, so enjoy lunch out in Miyajima and dinner back at Iwaso.

The oyster season is from December to February and Hiroshima oysters are world famous for their fresh flavour and firm texture.

Call us on 020 3993 8476 to start planning your holiday to Iwaso or take a look at our itineraries to Japan


Iwaso is a traditional luxury Ryokan overlooking the picturesque island of Miyajima. Its location in the woods of Momijidani offers is very serene and the fantastic service ensures authentic Japanese hospitality throughout your stay.

Iwaso is the most famous Ryokan on the island of Miyajima with a history spanning more than 145 years. As it was also the first Ryokan to open on the island, it has a superior and idyllic location in Japan's stunningly beautiful Momijidani Park.

The newest part of the Iwaso Ryokan was built in 1981 and these tatami floor rooms have private bathrooms and very peaceful views of a stream and the surrounding woodland. For the ultimate experience there are a couple of separate cottages (hanare) that are more than 80 years old, all exquisitely decorated featuring old wooden bathtubs. Open your shoji screens to see maples, a gurgling brook and woods, all in utter privacy.

Breakfasts and lunches are served in the hotel's Momiji restaurant which has a lovely veranda overlooking the Momijidani River. You’ll be treated like royalty throughout your stay at Iwaso and will enjoy delicious fresh and seasonal cuisine opulently served to you each evening in the comfort and peace of your own guest room.

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Iwaso's 38 rooms are in three buildings all elegantly designed with traditional lattice work and Japanese influences. We recommend rooms in the Shinkan building as they have private bathrooms or stay in a Hanare cottage for an authentic and more private experience .


Children are welcome to come and stay at Iwaso. However, there are no specific facilities available for families. Babysitting can be arranged on request.


Iwaso has a lovely traditional tea lounge and peaceful library. Momiji restaurant has a lovely riverside veranda and is open for lunch (breakfast and dinner are served in the privacy of your guest room). Not to be missed are the various spa baths - sampling these in such beautiful surrounds is a wonderful way to pass the hours.


Iwaso's location is ideal for nature walks or visit the Itsukushima shrine, a World Heritage Site only a few minutes walk away and beautifully illuminated at night.



Victoria Douglas (Staff)

It was such a great touch to be met off the ferry from Hiroshima and escorted by Iwaso's own private car through the winding roads to a hidden guesthouse. The cherry blossom was in full bloom and the only thing to be heard from the surrounding forest was the trickling steam. Whilst not the most luxurious ryokan, it was definitely the most authentic and peaceful.


  • Hakone Discovery

    Spend a day exploring the treasures of Hakone, including a cruise on Lake Ashi, marvelling at the magnificent views of Mount Fuji and surrounding mountains, before visiting the Hakone Open Air Museum, home to works by Rodin, Miro and Picasso.

  • Scott Dunn Suggests: Walking in and around Hakone

    Hakone have some beautiful hiking trails which provide stunning, scenic walks to many of Japans lofty or snowy peaks. Some of the original stone pavements remain which take hikers past tea houses, waterfalls and through overgrown forests.

Holiday Ideas

  • Imagine Japan

    Tokyo, Miyajima, Kyoto, Hakone, Tokyo

    from £5000 pp inc flights & transfers for 10 nights

    • Although we will provide you with a private guide at times, you’ll have plenty of time to explore this captivating country independently, and you’ll have the pleasure of using the high-speed bullet trains.
    • Enjoy the tranquillity of the hot springs whilst you stay at Yama No Chaya inn, located in Hakone
    • We’ll arrange an intriguing insight into a Geisha’s life for you with one of our experts in Geisha culture

Location & directions

Miyajima, Japan

Located on Miyajima Island (also known as Itsukushima). It is 300m (a 3 minute walk) from Iwaso to Itsukushima Shrine.

How to get there

12-hour International flight to Tokyo International Airport-Haneda, followed by a 2-hour Shinkansen (bullet train) journey to Hiroshima and a 20-minute Ferry. This is recommended as part of a longer Japan itinerary.

Speak to our specialists 020 3993 8860

    Why book with Scott Dunn?

  • 100% financial protection
  • 24/7 emergency assistance
  • Firsthand knowledge
  • Renowned service
  • Award-winning tour operator

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Call us on 020 3993 8476 to start planning your holiday to Iwaso or take a look at our itineraries to Japan

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