1960 Yumori Kamaya Brochure, Nikkō National Park

日光国立公園湯元温泉, 湯守釜屋 / [Nikkō National Park Yumoto Hot Spring, Yumori Kamaya]. - Main View

1960 Yumori Kamaya Brochure, Nikkō National Park


Ryokan R and R.


日光国立公園湯元温泉, 湯守釜屋 / [Nikkō National Park Yumoto Hot Spring, Yumori Kamaya].
  1960 (undated)     7.25 x 10.25 in (18.415 x 26.035 cm)     1 : 350000


This is a map and information brochure produced by the Yumori Kamaya (湯守釜屋) ryokan (旅館 guest house) in Nikkō, Japan. The brochure focuses on the nearby attractions in Nikkō National Park, in particular the Yumoto Hot Spring (湯元温泉), which is adjacent to the guest house.
A Closer Look
The recto (front) includes a large image of the ryokan, while a smaller image at top-right presents the entrance to the structure. Aside from Japanese text, 'Yumot [Yomoto] Spa' and 'Kamaya Hotel' are written in English (although ryokan is not generally translated as 'hotel,' Yumori Kamaya is an especially large ryokan).

The map at right is oriented towards the northwest, with Mt. Onsendake (温泉岳, literally 'hot spring hill') at top and Nikkō's train station (日光駅) at bottom. At bottom-right is a list of times and prices of travel from Tokyo (presumably by train) to various points in the region.

On the verso, the text at top is a guide to the Yumoto Hot Spring while the text at bottom discusses the ryokan itself. Photos highlight various amenities of the ryokan, hot spring, and adjacent attractions, like the Yunoko Lake (湯ノ湖) and a ski park (スキー場).

Yumori Kamaya has been in operation at the same location since it was founded in 1868, designed to access the hot spring which had been in use by locals for centuries. The entire surrounding area has long been renowned for its natural beauty, making it an easy choice as the site for one of Japan's first national parks, Nikkō National Park (日光国立公園), founded 1934.

Ryokan and hot springs (often paired) play an important role in Japanese leisure, while also carrying wider cultural valences. For a mostly urbanized country, escaping to a bucolic hot spring is an opportunity to 'recharge,' similar to spas elsewhere. But they have a special cultural significance in Japan, a mountainous country with a tradition of venerating nature (hot springs have historically been central to Shinto purification rituals). Moreover, trips to rural ryokan and hot springs, along with associated activities like skiing, became a symbol of middle-class status in the postwar period.
Publication History and Census
This brochure was most likely produced by the ryokan itself, though the verso does include a stamp of the 'K. K. Travel Agency,' which also may have been affiliated with the ryokan. It is undated but by appearances dates from the postwar era, around 1960. It is not known to exist in any institution's holdings and has no known history on the market.


Good. Wear along fold lines.