Day 7—Aoni Onsen

Present existence/Three hundred year tradition/Aoni Onsen

Shortly after leaving Mikako and Soma’s house, we pull over and take a look at the maps. Jason found Aoni Onsen through internet research. It turns out it is one of the last truly traditional ryokans in Japan. A ryokan is a Japanese inn for travelers that typically features tatami-matted rooms with sliding shoji screens for doors. They are usually situated along hot springs or scenic sites. Aoni Onsen, where we are staying, has hot spring baths by a waterfall on top of a mountain. It is unique in that it uses only kerosene lamp lighting, as was originally done 300 years ago, and does not supply outlets or wi-fi in the guest rooms.  This truly creates a sense of peace and relaxation that constant access to electronics doesn’t allow for me.


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