Japan |Multiple regions

Relax, take your time. Hot spring areas to refresh the spirit in summer

Hot springs (onsen) are an especially popular feature of Japanese sightseeing. There are many hot springs which are especially enjoyable to visit in summer, such as "secret" spots inaccessible due to snow in winter, as well as famous springs with cooler bathing water, with special properties, etc. Here we present this season's recommendations for hot springs where you can enjoy some time to yourself!

 

 

Iwate Prefecture, Geto Onsen (岩手県 夏油温泉)

 
 

The origin of the name "Geto" comes from the Ainu language, meaning "a place with cliffs". It is a hot spring that can only be accessed in summer due to heavy snow in winter, and the water ripples in a way that makes it look like oil, and it is thought for this reason, that the Japanese written name uses characters for "summer" and "oil". All the sources for the outdoor baths have been unaltered since they were first discovered, with bathtubs themselves as the source of the hot spring, which gushes out from either the bottom of the bath or at the side. Delight in the experience of wild and natural hot springs, unaltered by human hand.

 

Gunma Prefecture, Shiriyaki Onsen (群馬県 尻焼温泉)

 
 
 

Shiriyaki Onsen is a hot spring in the Kuni area of Nakanojo Town, an area named "the most beautiful village in Japan". According to one story, the name of this hot spring (which translates as "scalded backside") has its origins in the practice of sitting on the stones which are warmed up with the hot water coming from the bottom of the river, to cure hemorrhoids. The water is known for being gentle, so bathers do not get weary even if they get in many times. Famous for the large, natural, outdoor bath created by damming the hot springs source at the bottom of the river, it is the perfect hot spring to appreciate the majestic peacefulness of nature's grandeur.

 

Nagano Prefecture, Takamine Onsen (長野県 高峰温泉)

 
 
 
 
 

Looking out from an elevation of 2,000 m, sense the wide-open space, take in uninterrupted scenery, and experience the true pleasure of outdoor bathing above the clouds at Takamine Onsen. Why not take time to relax and unwind in nature, away from the hustle and bustle of daily life, experiencing the vivid green foliage of the trees in the sunshine, the expansive blue sky overhead, the gentle breeze?

Nagano Prefecture, Shirahone Onsen (長野県 白骨温泉)

 
 
 
 

These hot springs feature milky-white water. The water is gentle, so even those with delicate skin can bathe in the neutral sulfur springs, effective for heat rash and skin irritation. In addition, due to the high elevation, even in summer the hot springs can be enjoyed in cool surroundings.
 

*This information is accurate as of June 2019 and may be subject to change without notice. For details and/or the latest information, please inquire directly with the relevant establishments.
*Photographs provided by: Geto Onsen, Shiriyaki Onsen, Takamine Onsen, Shirahone Onsen

 

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