Nature & Culture of Japan

To make your trip to Japan more interesting


A hot spring (Onsen) where foreigners can enjoy without hesitation

Hot springs are said to have medical uses to cure illness. The basis is unknown, there are hot springs that are said to be good for heart disease, cancer and gout. I don’t think how much they are as effective as actually taking medicine. Anyway, the greatest benefit is that we can relax there.

There are about 3000 hot spring sites in Japan. Because I like hot springs, I would like foreigners to enjoy ones in Japan.

However, it is difficult for foreigners to understand that they are naked and share the same space with others. Especially, foreigners whose skin colors are different from those of Japanese people say that they are stared more than usual by Japanese people there. I had always difficulties on guiding foreign people.

Very rarely, there are hot springs that require you to wear a bathing suit. Kawayu Onsen in Wakayama Prefecture is one of them. Because the hot water comes out from the bottom of the river, it’s as easy as blocking the water in the river. It’s so huge that it is called the “thousand-person” bath. Since the river water increases in summer, it is installed only in winter. It’s free charge. And you can enjoy the hot springs without hesitation.

Duration: December to February

This is a photo in summer, but a huge hot spring appears here in winter.


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