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Onsen, hot spring resorts

Tomoe S.

by Tomoe S.

(105 reviews)
Last updated : Nov 02, 20224 min read

Travel Tips

 

blog imageJapanese people have loved to take a bath, not just taking a shower. Soaking in a bath tub filled with hot water is Japanese custom and we like to go to hot spring resorts to relax. 

'Onsen' means hot spring resort where you can experience hot water comes from the earth. Japan is a volcanic island and it is said that there are about 3000 hot spring resorts in Japan. 

Onsen has many benefits. It is good for recovering from fatigue and improving health condition. It makes our body warm and relaxed. Some famous novelists had stayed at Onsen resorts to cure their health problems and write their novels before. 

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The nature of Onsen varies depending on the region.  Some Onsen have cloudy white water and some have clear water.  At Arima Onsen, located in Hyogo Prefecture (you can easily access to this Onsen from Osaka), you can enjoy reddish brown hot springs called 'Kinsen' (Gold spring).  At Arima Onsen, you can also enjoy clear hot spring called 'Ginsen' (Silver spring).

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At Kinosaki Onsen, located in north Hyogo Prefecture, you can enjoy visiting 7 onsen during your stay.  You can enjoy walking in town wearing yukata (a kind of kimono made of cotton, which is suitable for wearing after taking a bath).

At some onsen resorts such as Ibusuki Onsen in Miyazaki and Beppu Onsen in Oita, you can also enjoy 'Suna-buro' (sand-steamed hot resort).

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You can also enjoy 'Rotenburo', outdoor bath (open-air bath) set in nature or in a garden.  Beautiful nature let you enjoy and relaxed while bathing in 'Rotenburo'.

The bath is divided into 2 areas for men and women, so don't worry...

Take off your clothes before entering the bath. Please wash your body with hot water before taking a bath.  You must not enter the hot springs when your body is not clean or has soap on your body.  You cannot wear a bathing suit at a hot spring, except for some modern hot spring resorts. 

You should not put your towel into onsen. Please put your towel which you bring into onsen room, aside or on your head.  Most hot spring resort facilities don't allow people with tattoos in Japan, however, some onsen resorts have been getting accepted such people these days. Please check each onsen resort if you are interested. (You can see on the website.)

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If you haven't had any experiences to go into onsen (a large onsen room where you soak in onsen with other visitors) and are afraid of going there, I recommend you stay at Onsen ryokan room attached with onsen in its room, at the beginning. (You have to pay a little expensive to stay in such room, though.) (Almost the rooms of hotels and ryokans have a bathroom in each room, however, those bathrooms use, not onsen but natural hot water.) If you stay at such ryokans, you can enjoy beautiful and delicious Japanese food, too. Also, you can enjoy onsen whenever you want, because onsen of your own is in your room.  You don't have to worry about what to wear to a large onsen room in your hotel or ryokan. 

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If you don't mind going to a large onsen room, you should go and try!  I'm sure you will like it and will be fascinated with Onsen! Visiting onsen may become one of your purposes to visit Japan! If you are interested in Onsen, and want to ask which onsen is good to visit, please send me mails. I like onsen and want to talk about onsen with you!!!

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Tomoe S.

Tomoe S.

4.93 / 5
(105 reviews)

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