Iizaka Onsen is located in Fukushima City, an inland area of Fukushima Prefecture. Recognized as one of the three best hot springs in Oshu (the Tohoku area’s old name) and described in “Oku no Hosomichi” (The Narrow Road to the Deep North) by the Japanese poet Matsuo Basho, who visited this hot spring in 1689, Iizaka Onsen has a long and significant history.
The temperature of the water is above 40 degrees Celsius, which warms up your body very well so you won’t feel cold after taking a bath. It is a mild, clear and colorless alkaline simple hot spring, which is said to be effective for recovering from exhaustion and promotion of health. There are various types of accommodation facilities, from small-scale inns to large-scale Japanese-style ryokan and hotels. In addition, there are many bath facilities for drop-in visitors. There are also nine public bath facilities in the town, which you can enjoy for only 200 to 300 yen.
Sabako-yu is the oldest public bath facility in Iizaka Onsen, which is said to be where Matsuo Basho enjoyed the hot spring. As the water is relatively hot, many people have to shout out “hot!” upon touching the water, which often serves as a conversation starter between locals and visitors. You may be able to have a nice conversation with local people in a unique way in a communal bathhouse.
As it is a historic onsen town, the area has many historic buildings as well as shrines and temples. This area also has many fruit farms growing various kinds of fruit, especially summer to autumn, including peaches, sand pears, and grapes, which are available at many farms for self-picking. Let’s visit Iizaka Onsen to let your body benefit from onsen and fresh fruit!