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Japan’s Best Hot Spring Town emerges as the ultimate Après-Ski Add-On

December 7, 2017 Destination North Asia No Comments Email Email

Enticing culture, amazing food, unique old world charm – and the world’s most reputable hot springs (onsens) – Kinosaki Onsen is a destination that should be high on every Japan bucket list and with ski season just around the corner there has never been a better time to tick it off.

According to Visit Kinosaki, the onsen town is the ideal add-on to a ski holiday allowing travellers to experience two of Japan’s most important drawcards – skiing and culture – in one trip. 

“Kinosaki is an absolute must for those wanting to go beyond the slopes to get a taste of the real Japan” said Alison-Roberts Brown, Regional Director of Visit Kinosaki in Australia. 

“It’s the perfect way to treat yourself to a dose of cultural indulgence before heading back home. So we really recommend taking that trip to the mainland after your ski holiday for you will be rewarded with some of the most culturally immersive experiences you can get in Japan and the world.” 

“And what better place is there to warm yourself up after a frosty ski holiday, than in some of the world’s finest onsens?” she adds.

 But whilst visiting an onsen is one of the most rewarding experiences one can have when visiting Kinosaki, there is a number of dos and don’ts to be aware of when visiting. Visit Kinosaki shares their most useful tips to onsen-ing for first-time visitors. 

  1. Get your Yukata on

In Kinosaki Onsen, it is tradition for visitors to wear a yukata, a casual summer garment, during their stay in a ryokan. To complete the look, slip on a pair of geta (Japanese wooden sandals).

Top tip: Do not cross the right side of the Yukata above the left – this is how Japanese traditionally dress the dead in yukata. For more instructions and yukata fashion no-nos watch here. 

  1. Enter the changing rooms

Note: red curtains are for women, blue (sometimes purple) for men. Needless to say these two shouldn’t be mixed up. 

  1. The naked truth

Inside the changing rooms, undress and put all (yes, all) of your clothes into a locker. Clothes, including swimsuits and underwear, are not allowed in the bathing area nor the onsen. The only thing you should take with you is the small towel, provided by your ryokan. 

  1. The pre-bath shower

Although it may seem confusing to us to shower before a bath, this is an important part of the onsen experience. Use the stools provided in the shower area and remain seated while showering. 

  1. When in the bath

Don’t let your towel or hair touch the water, so if you have long hair, it is recommendable to tie it up. No swimming, jumping, or diving in the water. 

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