Visiting Japan rates as a highlight of my year. My daughter and I have traveled around the country many, many times now. Recently we returned from a trip, and we are still aglow with the sights, sounds, and colors of our experience. We've also come back with some new insights. I'd like to tell you about what turned out to be a good idea.
We had planned to spend some time in Kyoto, but we felt we didn't need to stay overnight in the city. On an earlier trip to Japan we had visited Shiga Prefecture and were comfortable riding up and down the JR Biwako Line. Amanda suggested we stay in Otsu - she thought it would cost less and it was just a 10-minute ride to the former capital city of Kyoto.
We arrived at the sleepy Otsu station and headed down the street ahead of us. A couple of blocks later we spotted a Lawson's on the left side of the road. When we looked to the right, above us was a lit up sign, and there it was: Super Hotel.
I am happy to report that Super Hotel was clean, comfortable, and convenient to the station. The staff was pleasant, and we enjoyed the free buffet-style breakfast. You even get free use of the cup type vending machine - I tried peach iced tea, hot cocoa, and strawberry hot cocoa over a three-day stay. Not only that, Super Hotel had free wifi with an excellent connection. For us, the hotel was perfect... and all for 7900 yen per night for 2 people!
Amanda and I were able to venture to Kyoto and various other cities, then return to Otsu in the evening. You may also take the JR to attractions in Shiga, such as Hikone Castle - it is one of only twelve castles in Japan with the original keep, and only one of four castles designated as a national treasure. You may also visit Lake Biwa - it is the largest freshwater lake in Japan and is one of the world's twenty oldest lakes, dating to almost four million years ago. So if you don't require fancy digs, stay at Super Hotel in Otsu and make your yen go further!
Super Hotel Otsu Map