Hot spring is a part of Japanese tradition. Onsen is a new and unknown concept for the tourists. But when you plan to visit Takayama, do not miss the one of the best places for hot spring bath in Japan. These following information will help you to be convinced and well-informed about onsens:
1. Okuhida Hot Spring Village
The most popular place for hot spring in Takayama is Okuhida. It is a collective spot consist of five famous hot spring areas. Each of them offers different but special offers for the visitors. The oldest of all the areas is Hirayu Hot Spring. The rest of four are built in the surrounding areas and these are Shin-Hirayu Hot Spring, Shin-Hotaka Hot Spring, Fukuchi Hot Spring, and Tochio Hot Spring. The entire Okuhida Hot Spring has almost 140 outdoor hot spring baths. However, Shin-Hotaka Hot Spring is the most famous of those because it has outdoor baths located right beside a running river.
- Name: Okuhida Hot Spring Village
- Address: Okuhida Onsen-go, Takayama City, Gifu
- Price: From 500 to 2,000 yen
- Access: From JR Takayama Station, a 60-minute trip on a Nohi Bus bound for Shinhotaka Onsen
- Opening hour: 8:30am – 5:00pm
- Website: http://www.okuhida.or.jp/world/english/
2. Know the Onsen Culture
One of the main features of onsen is, it is not about cleaning. A bather needs to take a bath first before getting down in onsen pool. The primary purposes of onsen are about relaxation and health benefits. Onsen water is hot naturally because of the volcano. The water is rich in many minerals like iron, sodium chloride, radical carbon, sulphur and more. These are the source of good health. Even some of the onsens are intended to cure some major diseases.
3. Tattoo-Friendly Onsens in Takayama
Most of the Onsens ban people with tattoos in their body. This is because a tattoo is considered as a sign of disrespect and mistrust, sometimes maybe a member of a crime gang. But, things have changed much in Japan and now many of them accept tattooed guest. Some tattoo-friendly private places in Takayama are Hagi Takayama, Ryokan Murayama, Hidatei Hanaougi and so on.
- Name: Hagi Takayama
- Address: 280 Hachiman-machi Takayama-City, Gifu 509-0852 Japan
- Price: 2000-3000 yen
- Website: http://www.takayama-kh.co.jp/english/bath/index.html
- Name: Ryokan Murayama
- Address: 829 Nishinoisshiki-cho3-chome, Takayama-shi, Gifu Prefecture
- Website: http://www.ryokanmurayama.com/sta22169/index.html
- Name: Hidatei Hanaougi
- Address: 411-1 Honobu-machi, Takayama-City, Gifu 506-0003 Japan
- Price: 3150 yen
- Website: http://www.hanaougi.co.jp/english/spa/
4. Gender Separated or Not
Most of the onsens in Takayama offers different sections for male and female. Or, some of them may offer gender specific time tables on the same bath. But if visitors are comfortable with mixed gender onsens, those are available as well. You can also consider indoor onsens if you want to. Though people are supposed to go naked inside the pool, some hotels, specially with mixed gender options, provide cover up options to the bathers.
5. Some Important Rules
Always take a bath before entering the pool. This is a must rule for onsen bath. You need to clean up before you enter in the sacred water. Although you are supposed to not getting into the water with any clothes, but many indoor onsens allow that. But if it is not allowed, then do not put any clothes inside the water. No swimsuit is allowed too. The water is not for swimming either. You need to soak and relax only. Do not rinse your towel in the water. When you are done, wipe off excess water and sweat as much as possible before entering the locker room. Cameras are not allowed in most onsens.
Have a good trip and travel!