The word 'Hitou' today in Japan (used to describe

natural hot spring situated in remote locations)

suggests a desire to appreciate nature in a modern age where it is all too easy to forget about it.

In some respects, the word might even imply a desire to 'return to nature' or to the rustic scenes of a traditional rural Japan...

'Hitou' have evoked once more an earnest nostalgia in the hearts of modern people.
These were the words of the founder of Asahi Travel Agency, the late Mr. Hifumi Iwaki, who passed away in 2002.
His love for travel, his excellent foresight and enthusiasm for Onsen gave hope and encouragement to those small and rustic inns which live in the remotest regions of Japan to continue running their inns, despite being neglected by the tourism industry in an age of high economic growth.
The inns scattered amongst mountains and rivers, around solitary regions, began to be referred to by a new Japanese word - "Hitou", from 1975. At that time, only 30 inns joined us on our journey.
In 1977, Hifumi Iwaki, gathered information about the Hitou inns in a travel journal that would eventually become the foundation of the first edition of the book 'Nihon no Hitou' (Hitou of Japan) which introduced and promoted 38 inns.
Since the founding of the association, throughout the ever changing times, advancing along the beautiful, winding, steep and often stormy mountain road, we have progressed hand in hand with our member's inns, sharing our troubles and our moments of happiness. And with this, we have reached the 17th edition of "Hitou of Japan".
HITOU of Japan

The guide book "Hitou of Japan" (the latest 18th edition) is on sale now!

A5 size 234 page colour book  price: JPY(Japanese Yen) 850 (incl:tax)

Containing some of the finest 'HITOU' inns, located in rich and lush natural surroundings.

[How to purchase] (within Japan only)

Write the following details on the postal transfer form at the post office, and send your money. As soon as the order has been confirmed, the book will be sent.
  • [Transfer Address]  00160-2-139550
  • [Name]  Asahi Travel Agency Co.
  • [Space for message]  Make sure you write "Hitou of Japan" in this space.
  • [Customer]  Please write your name, address and telephone number.
  • Postage charge: JPY 310 (depending on the quantity. Please confirm the number with us.)
  • This book cannot be bought in bookstores.

[For enquiries, please contact]

Tel:+81-(0)3-6858-9815  [Asahi Travel Agency] (Japanese)
HITOU of Japan

Hitou of Japan

1st edition

Hitou of Japan

2nd edition

Hitou of Japan

3rd edition

Hitou of Japan

4th edition

Hitou of Japan

5th edition

HITOU of Japan

Hitou of Japan

6th edition

Hitou of Japan

7th edition

Hitou of Japan

8th edition

Hitou of Japan

9th edition

Hitou of Japan

10th edition

Hitou of Japan

11th edition

HITOU of Japan

Hitou of Japan

12th 13th edition
(same cover)

Hitou of Japan

14th edition

Hitou of Japan

15th edition

Hitou of Japan

16th 17th edition
(same cover)

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