September 11, 17 | nobu Kawashima
Did you know there is an “onsen river” in Kawayu Onsen? Enjoy the foot bath when you visit!
In the hot spring district of the famous onsen in eastern Hokkaido, Kawayu Onsen, you can find an “onsen river”. Steams come up from hot spring river, surrounded by rocks changed its colors to white due to the onsen components, and the water looks like greenish white. This is a real Onsen! You can walk around the river and also enjoy foot bath and hand bath.
“The real onsen water” flows to the river!The place where you can observe the onsen river is on the side of Kawayu Enchi, which is a part of Kawayu Onsen district.
▲You can observe the river from the road, or there is a promenade along the river so you can also walk along the river, too!
When walking the promenade by the river, you will feel that the hot spring water probably contains great efficacies, from the strong smell of sulfur and hydrogen sulfide and the water changed its color from hot spring components in front of your eyes.
▲The water of river has changed into greenish color.
▲Wow, it looks like having strong components!
▲There are some parts which can be crossed using foot boards. The river is shallow. However, water may be hot depending on places. It’s better to be careful not to fall.
Why is there a river of Onsen?If I did not know anything, I would have thought; “they should use this wonderful hot spring water rather than flowing everything.” However, the hot water is not leftover from hotels in the neighborhood nor wasting. It’s naturally flowing!
The source of the hot spring water is Mt. Io which is approximately 2 kilometers from Kawayu Onsen district.
▲Mt. Io is one of the major sightseeing destinations around Kawayu Onsen and Lake Kussharo.
The hot water created from volcanic activities of Mt. Io flow underground and come up to the surface at Kawayu Onsen district. Thus, the water flows as the Onsen River.
▲There are parts of Kawayu Enchi where we can observe water coming from underground.
The Onsen river is naturally flowing. It proves that Kawayu Onsen has plenty of hot spring water.
Enjoy the onsen with foot bath and hand bath“The water looks amazing and just looking at it is not enough!”
People who thought like that, enjoy the foot bath and the hand bath!
There are a foot bath area and benches on the side of onsen river.
▲People can enjoy foot bath even if it’s raining since it has a roof.
▲The area is big and quite large numbers of people can fit in.
▲The color of the water is same as the river, greenish white.
The bath is not only used by tourists but also local people every day. You may be able to build “foot to foot” relationships instead of “naked relationships” by talking with different people! (In Japan, there is a phrase “naked relationships” meaning becoming completely open relationships with someone by enjoying a bath together)
▲There is also a hand bath near foot bath. The water is, of course, the same as Onsen river and foot bath!
A walk along the river with natural hot spring water. You should definitely experience when you visit Kawayu Onsen. The scenery is quite rare and not likely to be seen at other onsen districts.
After getting the view of the Onsen river, enjoy the amazing water by foot bath and hand bath. If you feel like you want more bath, stay at an onsen hotel and enjoy the hot spring fully until you can feel the nice smell of onsen from your body!
Text, photo / Hokkaido Likers photo writer nobu Kawashima
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