Guide and information of Japan travel, with onsen hot spring, takaragawa, yudanaka, shimobe, akazawa onsen.
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Nothing but Onsen Hot Spring
There is such special feeling of just being in onsen, hotspring, if not good mineral influence proved by chemist, pharmacist, doctor, psychiatrist, please take close look at Japanese AGED lady's skin, you will find how they keep their skin condition sooooo good and balanced even without cosmetic assistance. No needs Shiseido, you will find yourself getting young by few years when you complete this "treatment" journey. Gentlemen, this is your own sake as well, you know, because your happiness is also content by your partner, yes, double cheese burger than plain burger. Of course, it is not only due to surface of your human body, but soaking in natural mineral water in wildness will surely result your spiritual harmony perfectly balanced like ying (moon) and yang (sun).

Here's some example of "hotspringing" from Tokyo to Tokyo (circle tour starting Tokyo ending Tokyo) or from Tokyo to Kyoto (land Narita or Haneda, depart from Kansai), you may enjoy staying each onsen ryokan not only a night but a week depending on your boss. That's said you may want to be your own boss!
Kaizen 1 (Tokyo to Takaragawa, mixed bath)
Takaragawa Onsen has great aura in deep mountain of Gunma-ken some 200km north of Tokyo. Watch out for the black bears in cages. If you stayed overnight, you might be ending up eating one piece of their body (bear meat at dinner table!), but if you would like to experience day time spa, this is one of the best NATURAL in deep mountain. Discount ticket is available at this page (shop in front of JR Minakami station). This is also one of the rare mixed-bath (no swimming suite!).
Map There is no longer direct train to Minakami (except high season), but Shinkansen, the bullet train, has the alternative way to reach into the nature world. Bus is not JR, therefore JPY2,300 round trip (for the bus journeys) has to be paid at bus driver when you get off. JPY2,780 special discount ticket is including the bus (JPY2,300 round trip) as well as admission fee (JPY1,500), which means JPY1,020 discount from JPY3,800. See above page for the discount ticket, please. You may search updated train schedule at HyperDia but the followings shows one good example/connection.
Ueno  06:26 => 08:16 Takasaki 08:24 => 09:31 Minakami 09:40 => 10:20 Takaragawa Onsen 15:30 => 16:08 Minakami 16:45 => 17:48 Takasaki 17:52 => 19:41 Ueno (JPY2,300 required for round trip bus journeys)
Kaizen 2 (Takaragawa to Yudanaka)
2nd hotspring Yudanaka Onsen which you may share with our ancestor (monkey? the key is not too much obsessed by money : ) is about 150km away from Takaragawa Onsen. You know already how to go back to Minakami station or Jomokogen station, from where you can catch JR trains to Takasaki (or Echigo-Yuzawa) to transfer for Nagano. There are, say, more than one train per hour (except the route between Tokamachi and Nagano), so not specific timetable would be necessary, but here's the route idea.
Minakami or Jomokogen => Takasaki => Nagano => Yudanaka
Minakami or Jomokogen => Takasaki => Yokokawa => Karuizawa => Nagano => Yudanaka
Minakami or Jomokogen => (Echigo-Yuzawa) => Muikamachi => Tokamachi => Nagano => Yudanaka
Yudanaka Station and Onsen is great page to explore on-line.
Kaizen 3 (Yudanaka to Shimobe)
Since Takaragawa and Yudanaka are relatively famous which sometimes mean that they have been beaten too much by millions of tourists (including Japanese tourists), the 3rd hotspring on this page is VERY local and untouched. Well, no need to feel back-off please, even there is NO ONE speak English, there is no English sign AT ALL, it is the perfect relaxing place to change your way of life, new assignment, new intellection, new concept, new world, new life within this life. Since nothing there but good mineral water (hot spring), it is highly recommended to find your self-being, perhaps your guru is hotspring, no wonder we feel good when we swim in agua, feels like we are secured in mother's womb. Earth nature is protecting you, there is nothing to worry about, just grab a book or two (Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse, Pobby and Dingan by Ben Rice, illusions by Richard Bach, Alchemist by Paulo Coelho or Bushido by Nitobe inazo.......), and let's relax few hours few times a day ( 2 hours x 3 times = 6 hours!) so that we sure naturally step into nirvana. Maybe there is similar side-affect like sleeping in Shukubo in Koyasan? or swimming in Ganga River?
Would you like to make your own itinerary from Yudanaka to Shimobe? Please find this English page to complete your spiritual journey! Thanks for saving my time (^_^)
Kaizen 3' (Yudanaka to Akazawa if not Shimobe or after Shimobe)
This is the best view onsen of Japan, called Akazawa Onsen, imagine that you stand on cliff naked watching down Pacific Ocean and the green peninsula of Izu. What more can we ask?
You may find this JR Pass purchasable inside Japan to support your itinerary. JR Minobu Line has such fantastic view!
Kaizen 4 (Shimobe or Akazawa to Tokyo or Kyoto)
And please-please do not forget to care your eyes/brains by viewing Mt.Fuji on your way to Tokyo or Kyoto after skin care in the hot springs.
Shimobe Onsen => Fuji (station name is indeed Fuji) => Shizuoka => Tokyo or Kyoto
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