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|Shirahama Onsen. Saki-no-yu|
onsen saki-no-yu is a free, open air hot spring.
It is on the west coast of the Kii peninsula overlooking the sea. The men's and women's areas are separated by a wall. One has to stand in the open and undress, but there are shelves to put the clothes on.
Saki-no-yu in Shirahama onsen is not difficult to find. When you get to Shirahama onsen, then just look for, and follow the signs for Saki-no-yu. It is located by the sea, so if your road is taking you into the mountains, away from the sea, then you are on the wrong road.
I had been driving around on the Kii peninsula on my Harley in the rain and was feeling very cold. I needed to get in a hot bath. Fortunately, Shirahama onsen and saki-no-yu were not far away. As far as I can remember, it is written in either KOJIKI or NIHONSHOKI that a long time ago an emperor dropped by this hot spring. In that case, I thought, it can not be bad.
I found the hot spring, parked my Harley and got in. The water was nice and warm. The closer I got to the source, the warmer it was. Since I was kind of freezing I got in just next to the source. The bath was like a big cavity in a rock with the water flowing out over water level creating a tiny waterfall. Through the centuries sediments had been building up on the rock smoothing it out and leaving it white bluish. An interesting sight.
Having heated back up in the hot spring I finally left and went back to my Harley. As I was getting ready to leave, two young japanese guys came by and started admiring it. They wanted to take some photos of me on it, but I told them that they could just get on it and take photos of themselves. I guess they had never been on a Harley before judging from the expressions on their faces. They both tried to look as cool as possible, but to me, they more looked like general Custer on his horse posing for a portrait.
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