Japan is famous for its natural hot springs, known as onsen, which are said to have healing and rejuvenating properties. The country has thousands of hot springs, each with its unique features and benefits. To truly immerse yourself in Japanese culture, exploring the onsen culture is a must. Here’s a guide to some of the best hot springs in the country:
- Kusatsu Onsen: Located in Gunma prefecture, Kusatsu Onsen is one of the most famous hot springs in Japan. The water is rich in minerals, and the town is known for its traditional atmosphere and scenic beauty.
- Hakone Onsen: Hakone is a popular hot spring destination near Tokyo, known for its stunning views of Mount Fuji and the surrounding countryside. The area has many hot spring resorts, and visitors can enjoy a relaxing soak while taking in the beautiful scenery.
- Beppu Onsen: Beppu is a town on the southern island of Kyushu and is known for having the most hot springs in Japan. There are over 2,000 hot springs in the area, ranging from traditional outdoor baths to modern indoor facilities.
- Noboribetsu Onsen: Located on the northern island of Hokkaido, Noboribetsu Onsen is a volcanic hot spring resort known for its unique sulfuric waters. Visitors can enjoy a soak in the hot springs while taking in the surrounding natural beauty.
- Dogo Onsen: Dogo Onsen is one of the oldest hot springs in Japan and is located in the city of Matsuyama on the island of Shikoku. The hot springs have a traditional Japanese design and are said to have healing properties for various ailments.
As the famous Japanese poet, Matsuo Basho, once said, “Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise. Seek what they sought.” And in Japan, the onsen culture is a perfect example of seeking what the wise have sought: relaxation, rejuvenation, and a connection with nature. So, when you visit Japan, make sure to experience the beauty of the country’s hot springs and immerse yourself in Japanese culture.