So earlier this week I decided to treat myself and went out to Hakone where I visited a spa that was recommended to me by Kaitar. It was a complex with areas called Yunnesun and Mori no Yu. Yunnesun consisted of the title area and Yutopia. Yu means hot water, so it’s both accurate and a pun, classic Japanese humor.
Unfortunately my camera isn’t waterproof so I don’t have any pictures of the inside, so you’ll have to deal with the text.
The entry fee was 4,000 Yen if you wanted to go into both, 3,500 for just Yunnesun or 1,800 for just Mori no Yu. Yunnesun is a bathing suit required area and Mori no Yu is a naked area. Of course, Mori no Yu is gender segregated. I went ahead and purchased the combo. After that I went to get changed. Of course there was a “no tattoos allowed” sign, but I was prepared with my wrist-band up over my bicep to cover mine and encountered no problems.
I headed over to the Yutopia section first, which consisted of 13 different baths in an outside valley. This was the key area, as it held some crazy baths. These included, but are not limited to, the Sake bath, the Wine bath, the Green tea bath, the Charcoal bath, the Coffee bath, etc… I spent about 90 minutes sampling all the different baths, and it was… interesting I guess. Then I moved over to the Yunnesun area. This also had some different baths, there was a Dead Sea bath, which was extremely high in salt content. It was actually too high for me. Not only did it make my face hurt where I had shaved in the morning, but since I’ve been in Japan my back has been breaking out a bit in acne from all the sweating, and the water made all the zits hurt too, so I quickly exited that one and showered off. I was happy to see I wasn’t the only one so affected. No one stayed in the bath more than a minute. There was also a steam room, although people kept opening the door so it barely ever got steamy enough. All the decor is very elaborate, think of a theme park, except for hot springs.
Finally I headed over to Mori no Yu, which was a standard hot spring. There was a washing area which I took advantage of after all the random baths, and then there were 5-6 traditional hot spring pools, indoor and outdoor, as well as some of the big wooden tubs which I utilized. It was lovely.
After getting some food and going back through Yutopia again, I finally headed out, about 5 hours after I had gotten there. It was a very nice day. Although I would recommend going with family or friends. I talked to a couple people here and there, but it’s one of those places made a lot better by sharing the experience with someone.
Full Album here (all 5 pictures):
And then on the way back, at the Sakuradamon station of the Yurakucho subway line I saw the signs for the “Women Only” train car, something that I had heard of but had yet to see. I guess the subway gropers hang out around the government.
Full album here:
On the job front, after putting in a bunch of applications I got hit with a bunch of interview requests, and went on three in four days, from Nara to Matsumoto. I have decided to accept the one in Nara, and head down on Monday to sign the contract and file the Visa application. I’ll also be looking for a apartment down there, so hopefully I’ll be moving later next week. Thanks to everyone for all their good-luck wishes. I’ll keep you updated on any developments.