Wednesday, June 12, 2013


Onsen is the Japanese term for hot spring.  Though it also includes man-made hot tub like facilities that people soak in without clothing.  Public onsens are located all over Japan, and generally easy to find and low cost.  For most Westerners, visiting an onsen is a bit of an awkward experience as we're not usually used to completely exposing ourselves in public.  Clothing is not optional, it is not allowed.  My very last night in Japan, a few of my friends asked if I'd like to join them at an onsen before leaving.  I decided I must!  We chose the most familiar onsen nearby, the Kintaikyo Onsen at Iwakuni Kokusai Kanko Hotel.  Definitely a great experience with good friends...

I say if you've got the chance, don't worry what you look like, go experience this different cultural opportunity.

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