OIJ #6: Sento, Onsen, Ofuro & Ashiyu

Wonderful hot waterworks in Japan! I mean, body cleansing, relaxation and cultural orientation that only in this part of the world that you can explore and enjoy. It’s part of the local culture where the internationals can partake and create interaction and even lasting friendship with the bathers in their “birthday suit.” No malice, no green thoughts. Just the way you are and no need or even no time to judge others.

I was at a “sento” (public bath house) last night. It’s actually a weekly trip after a long day of teaching at 3 various areas. Great to have one of this communal bath in my city and located along my way home. The hot bath is indeed therapeutic especially in the jet areas. It’s highly recommended to relax with hot bubble bath in the evening as it induces you to a deeper sleep. Good to wake up the following day with renewed energy & vigor!

One can do this at home with their “ofuro” (bath tub). No time limit to use it but no jet baths and other “sento” offers. There’s always pros and cons. You cannot have them all. You can just be by yourself.

Amazing how Japan can make do of what they have and even keep innovating them! They turn their natural hot spring into resorts where travellers or tourists enjoy “onsen” (open public hot bath) anytime of the day. Some of these baths have various flavors — from green tea to coffee to wine to milk! Others have floating oranges or citrus fruits!

Best “onsen” in Metropolitan Tokyo where I celebrated my golden birthday with my family & friends: https://daiba.ooedoonsen.jp/en/

Some cities have free “ashiyu” (foot bath) where it’s a good place for the locals, both male and female, to interact in the open air while dipping their feet in hot water. Blessed to have one nearby and the area has 3 cubicles with various hot temperatures. Most elderlies prefer to go to the 40+ C cubicle. Many times I’m alone in the mildest area — just about 30 degrees Celsius. Maybe as I advance in years, I go to the hotter area. 🙂

I’ve travelled to about 25 countries and “Only in Japan” that I can really enjoy my baths in “sento,” “ofuro,” “onsen” and “ashiyu.” Come to Japan and don’t miss these 4 types of baths!

P.S. I know some people only take a shower and not a bath. 🙂

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