Intimate hot spring experiences.
Mixed-gender bathing, or konyoku, has a rich history in Japan. Still, it is also difficult to find English information on many of them because they are rather traditional. Fortunately, GaijinPot Travel and GaijinPot Blog have guides and listings of where to find a natural hot spring where men and women can bathe together.
These are listed form northern Japan to southern Japan. They amount to more than 50 mixed-gender onsen and other places where men and women can bathe together in Japan. If you have questions about konyoku onsen, or mixed-gender hot spring, bathing etiquette, please read our Guide to Mixed Gender Onsen in Japan.
Hokkaido is the northernmost island of Japan and is a popular travel destination for thrill-seekers and foodies alike. The annual average of over 500 centimeters of snow makes the island a haven for skiers and snowboarders. At the same time, specialties such as fresh seafood and Sapporo-style tangy miso ramen bring hungry visitors from around the world.
Whether you’re the adventurous type or just looking for good eats, spend some of your downtimes at one of Hokkaido’s konyoku onsen.
The northern Tohoku region is known for its beautiful mountains, delicious rice, snowfall, and hot springs. What better way to enjoy all of the above than at a ryokan (Japanese inn) that can provide access to these Tohoku treasures?
Mixed-bathing was banned in Tokyo around the turn of the 19th century and has remained so ever since. Still, there are a few found outside of the city in the central region of Kanto that make for a perfect day trip to Gunma or Tochigi.
Gunma’s Takaragawa Onsen, one of Japan’s largest mixed-gender onsen, definitely tops the list.
Chubu is a vast region in the middle of Japan that comprises nine prefectures. It is also home to Japan’s beloved active volcano, Mt. Fuji. With so many prefectures packed into one region, you can find yourself lost in a sea of exciting things.
But one must-do activity on your long list of sights and experiences should be to visit a mixed-gender hot spring with your friends and family. Chubu is filled with beautiful outdoor onsen found in prefectures such as Yamanashi, Niigata, and Ishikawa
Konyoku onsen can be especially hard to find in Kansai, which is a shame since prefectures in the regions such as Wakayama and Kyoto are known for their traditionalism. While mixed-gender bathing can still be found, many of them are private baths found inside on an inn and will require a reservation in advance.
When making a reservation at a Japanese inn, state that you want to book the kashikiri onsen (private hot spring).
Shikoku is a small island region of Japan, comprising hundreds of smaller islands both inhabited and not. It is one of the “undiscovered” destinations you can travel to in Japan. Unfortunately, many of Shikoku’s konyoku onsen have not survived the passage of time. Thus, most are private onsen that can also accommodate mixed-gender bathing.
While discovering coastal and countryside prefectures Ehime, Kagawa, and Tokushima, soak up the best of the region with your partner, family, or friends. It’s an excellent way to experience onsen culture for those who aren’t keen on bathing with strangers.
The Chugoku region is well known for historical locations such as Hiroshima’s Atomic Bomb Dome and Itsukushima Shrine. There’s so much to do and see, you are bound to need a rest. What better way to relax after a busy day of traveling than visiting an onsen?
Finding public baths that allow men and women to bathe together in every prefecture of Kyushu can be difficult. In the linked article, you will see a list of public baths in three of Kyushu’s prefectures: Kagoshima, Kumamoto, and Oita.
Although not all of these locations require a reservation, some are in a ryokan, which only permits guests to use their facilities. Some have designated times for mixed bathing, in which case, we have made a note in the descriptions. Nevertheless, a private onsen with friends and family can be much preferred over a public bath if you’re the shy type.