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Thursday, July 20, 2006

Ashiyu ~Japanese Relaxation~



Have you heard about “Ashiyu”? As “Ashiyu (足湯)” is know as its Chinese characters, it means “footbath” in English. 足 (ashi) means foot and 湯 (yu) means hot water. In Japanese footbath, Ashiyu case, people can soak their leg to under knees.

Onsen (hot spring) in Japan may be well-known by people from all over the world; however, Ashiyu rises in popularity among Japanese well because of the easiness.

If you take Onsen in Japan, you need to prepare many things like towels, shampoo set and a change of underclothes which is lot of work. Besides, people especially from other country are reluctant to take hot spring naked with other people. In these points, Ashiyu is very simple and people feel free to take Ashiyu because they just need to show their leg.


There are many Ashiyu places, and some of them are free of charge especially in Onsen town. I took Ashiyu at Minase village in Akita prefecture the other day which was my first time. Although I just put my legs in hot water, my whole body became warm and felt really comfortable. Moreover, Ashiyu doesn’t impose a burden on heart which could happen while you take Onsen. What is good one more about Ashiyu is men and women can use the same Ashiyu place together enjoying conversation different from Onsen!

Some photos of Ashiyu from Flickr

19 comments:

Piccola said...

Ooh! I'll make Gemma go there with me. So she can now sit beside me & not be able to complain that i'm going to be sitting at the other corner of the onsen, while she is at another corner. :D

soursop said...

interesting! :D

my mom used to advise me to dip legs into a bucket of warm water in the evening before sleeping. i heard it's good for health, but i haven't tried it yet.

for 足湯, does the water need to be hot spring? how about normal warm water at home?

soursop said...

somewhat similar, what i used to do is to run the stream of warm water onto my feet before sleeping. it feels very soothing, hence i can get a good night sleep ^o^

kayanon said...

piccola>
Oh, have you ever taken Onsen?? I know your feeling. Even I sometimes hesitate to take Onsen with other people. I prefer night Onsen at hotel or ryokan because there are few people, and I can really relax.

kayanon said...

soursop>

I think normal warm water is still ok, but hot spring water is better because it has various effects, for example, good for rheumatism, stiff shoulders, lumbago and so on.
You can try 足湯 with normal warm water, and it is still good for health.

Fabi said...

Ashiyu must be a nice feeling I think, I wanna try that too!!

Piccola said...

Ah~ No ^^; I have not tried onsen before. I hope to try it someday though.

スロ / Bernat said...

Let's try onsen all together! hahaha

kayanon said...

fabi>
yeah, Ashiyu makes people feel really comfortable. I also want try it again!

kayanon said...

piccola>
Onsen is also nice, I don't like sauna though. There are many Onsen places in my hometown, actually. There is famous onsen in Akita which is considered as curing ill like cancer. People who is ill visit the Onsen from all over Japan.

kayanon said...

スロ>
Yeah, there is another onsen, Konyoku which has both men and women. You wanna try it??

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