It situated in the northwestern part of Tokyo, and it takes about three hours by car or by Shinkansen (bullet train) from Tokyo, Tsubame Onsen (Hot Spring) in Myoko highland of Niigata prefecture is now at the height of the fall foliage. There are eight small Onsen Ryokans (Japanese inns with hot spring) scattered on the either side of several tens of meters steep hill on the mountainsides of 1,100 meters high.
Tsubame Onsen is a famous place as a colony of martin, and “Tsubame” is a martin (a kind of swallow) in Japanese. When I were there, I saw nests of martins lined along the eaves. As martins has already grown and left the nests, all of the nests were empty at that time.
The hot spring was sulfur bath with milky white colour. At the edge of the town (in the middle of above photo) there is free of charge outdoor hot spring along the mountain stream. It was full of visitors who came here to enjoy the colourful autumn leaves.
Yes, now is the best time for the autumn leaves. The outdoor hot spring will be closed during winter.