"My first onsen experience in Beppu, a town often shrouded in water vapor on the southern island of Kyushu, converted me into a furo-aholic (bath-aholic) in the early 1990s. Two decades later, I still find the magical waters an endless source of visual and visceral pleasure." - Mark Edward Harris
The cascade bath at the Hyotan Onsen in Beppu, Kyushu. The waters of geothermal springs are believed to have healing properties.
At Goshogake in Akita Prefecture, bathers often have a session in a steam-bath box before proceeding to an indoor hot-spring bath with a high sulphur content
A sake tray floats alongside yuzu in Sujiyu, Kyushu
A woman bathes in a tub made from a sake barrel at the hotel Dai Kogen on the southern island of Kyushu
A woman enters an outdoor hot spring at the Kannawaen Ryokan, Beppu
The communal indoor bath at Hoshi Onsen Chojukan Ryokan in Gumma Prefecture
A bath in a ryokan, a traditional inn, in Echigo Yuzawa, Gunma Prefecture, which is the setting for Kawabata Yasunari’s Nobel Prize-winning novel Yukiguni (Snow Country), a story about a love affair between a hot-spring geisha and her city-dwelling client
The communal indoor bath at Chojukan Ryokan soothes bathers with spring water rich in calcium and magnesium.