Updated: Jun 15
This was my very first visit to Japan, and I was very excited. Ever since I arrived, my mom, who happens to be a long-term resident here, had been telling me about onsens in Japan, and really pushed this relaxation vacation for me to experience as according to her is one of the unique experiences any visitors can do in Japan. And, unlike a private onsen, this one is getting totally naked in a bath house with other people or guests.
Hakonenomori Okada is located at 250-0312 Kanagawa, Hakone, Yumotochaya 191. It is one of the many hotels in Japan that offers hot-spring baths, where they feature a bath house in open-air and overlooking a forested hill.
“life is too short to be ashamed of your body. Nudity is natural and, for sure since all of you are naked, nobody cares what you look like.”
We occupied a large room with 2 single beds with a large dining/sala (a tatami) that converts into a bedroom where you put a futon to sleep on. The room comes with its own toilet which is separated from the shower room, that has its own bath tub too.
Being a Filipino, and raised in a conservative family, going naked in a public bath house was not, at all, that easy. It took me a lot of courage, until such time I became more relaxed and comfortable, when I got to observe how other guest can just walk freely while their tool, huge or small, dangled left and right.
I dare you take this challenge, when you have the chance to visit Japan. Just put this in your mind: no matter what your size or shape is, life is too short to be ashamed of your body. Nudity is natural and, for sure since all of you are naked, nobody cares what you look like. So, just let it go and don’t let being naked, scare you away from enjoying one of Japan’s nicest experiences.
For first-timers, I made up some guidelines or reminders, on what to do during your naked bath experience:
Before leaving your room, going to the bath, change your clothes to a “yukata” – a Japanese Cotton Robe. You can wear this during your stay, even when you go to your dinner or breakfast.
The bath house is separated by gender, where blue curtain is the entrance for boys, and some other colors for girls.
Undress everything in the locker area, and leave your things there. Individual lockers are available, just be sure to leave your valuables inside your room. You will never need them inside.
Take a bath (not just shower) and clean yourself; shampoo for your hair, and soap for your body. Just grab a chair. I find it more comfortable seating, and hiding my hidden gem… at times.
You can now enjoy your “could be” most relaxing moment in Japan. And again, You NEED to be naked. Yes, it’s a MUST!! If you’re embarrassed, you can always use your room’s bathtub.
And, always check what time the Onsen is available, since you might want to take another relaxing dip after dinner, or just before bedtime.
By the way, never rinse your hand towel in the bath or even let it touch the water. You can fold this and just place it on top of your head, or on the sides. And, if you have any tattoos, sorry it’s a big NO (can’t bath), you need to use your room’s bathtub instead. They hotel attendant may not see you or notice it, however, we should respect their culture, just like how many of the Japanese always do.
Unfortunately, I couldn’t take any photos inside the Onsen since photography is absolutely prohibited; they don’t want to see any of their naked guests in its full glory!
The Room Amenities
Inside the room is a small fridge, several water glasses, a teapot with an instant tea that you can brew, and some complimentary cookies. Feel free to bring in any food or drinks, just don’t forget to clean up your mess such as fruit peelings, beer cans/bottles, or anything that you brought outside…
Enjoy and have fun being naked!