When you ask a Japanese person what he/she enjoys the most, they often answer “going to onsens”. Onsens are hot springs. You can find them all over Japan. When Japanese have free time, they like going to resorts that have onsens. It is one of the best ways for them to relax and socialize. They go with family or friends.
Before visiting such a place, one must get familiar with the etiquette. For example, washing and rinsing before entering the onsen, bringing a small towel, not having … tatoos (as we mentioned in other posts, the Japanese government is trying to encourage onsen owners to ease on this to boost tourism …). Nowadays, most onsen have separate admission: a place for women and one for men. Did we mention that people are usually naked there? … Thus a problem for many a foreigner … Or, is it really a problem? The Japan Times has asked a small panel of gaikokujin. They seem rather open to the idea of walking around and being in the hot springs naked.
How about you? How do you feel about bathing naked with strangers?
In any case, don’t forget to wash before!