The Joy of the Onsen

When I went to Japan I had the opportunity to enjoy an onsen.  This is a public bath, or a bath you take with others.  I was able to do this with a Japanese friend and it was very relaxing!

If you don’t know about an onsen then I will let you know now!

You must shower first, on what is basically a floor.  The floor is designed like a shower, but you must sit.  You have a stool to sit on and wash from there.  After, you can go into the bath.  A bath in Japan is for soaking and relaxing.  So no dirty bodies please! You can’t wear a towel or any article of clothing.  Basically you must be quite comfortable with bathing with others.  This seems rather odd for many Americans, but the Japanese are a group centered society.  They see it as normal and are quite respectful. So don’t worry too much about being a naked foreigner.

*warning, the onsen is extremely hot spring water.  It has minerals and again, super hot, even more so than a hot tub!  When I soaked in the bath with my friend I could only do 10 minutes maybe.  LOL

After that you take a quick shower to wash off the minerals of the bath.  Then you dry in the dressing room and sleep like a baby that’s just been fed. HA

When I visited my other friend I had the opportunity to try the onsen again.  Unfortunately my little red friend decided to visit me. DARN!

The onsen I couldn’t go to was located in a nice resort town in Hokkaido.  I have the following pictures to show the town and all its relaxing glory.  I will love to travel to this place again and enjoy the onsen with others.

As you can tell I have no inhibitions. How do they say, “When in Japan, do as the Japanese do!”

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