Obama Onsen: Seaside hot spring featuring a glowing sunset

Obama Onsen is located on Shimabara Peninsula in Kyushu’s Nagasaki Prefecture. In the middle of the peninsula, there is an active volcanic area called Mt. Unzendake. Benefiting from the volcano, various areas on the peninsula have hot spring sources, including Obama Onsen on the west side, Shimabara Onsen on the east side, and Unzen Onsen in the middle part, where you can enjoy various types of hot springs with different temperatures and effects.

Obama Onsen: Seaside hot spring featuring a glowing sunset

The history of Obama Onsen goes back such a long time ago that it was described in the “Hizen Fudoki” (an ancient report on Hizen Province), which was compiled in 713. It is said that the onsen started to be used as a therapeutic bath around 1914, so it has been healing many people physically and mentally for a long time. About 30 hot spring sources provide abundant hot water. Since the area is close to the magma reservoir underneath Tachibana Bay, the temperature of the hot spring sources rises to 105 degrees Celsius, one of the highest among the hot springs all over Japan. The water contains chlorides, mainly sodium chloride, which is salt. The salt in the water attaches to the surface of the skin, preventing dryness and evaporation of sweat, so your body remains warm even after the bath.

As Obama Onsen is located along the coast facing west, it is a famous place for beautiful sunsets. While enjoying the hot springs at one of the hotels or a public bathhouse along Tachibana Bay, you can have a great view of the sun setting over the sea. If you want to try various bath spots, we recommend the “Yumeguri-fuda” (1,300 yen) pass that allows you to visit two hotel bath facilities and two public bathhouses out of a total of 15 facilities in the area. * The pass is not available during New Year holidays or “Golden Week holidays” (late April to early May).

Obama Onsen offers another way to enjoy the baths besides immersing yourself in hot water. At the onsen area, you can see steam cookers at parks, restaurants, and hotels. These are for heating food using the hotspring steam. You can use them for free at some places. Just throw in your favorite food ingredients, such as eggs, vegetables, meat, and seafood, and you will get delicious steamed food with intense umami flavor. This area also has local specialty dishes, such as “Obama Champon (noodle),” as well as sweets made with local ingredients. Enjoy eating and walking in the onsen town!

From the onsen town overlooking Tachibana Bay. The glow of the reddening sunset is just breathtaking.

There are hotels and public bathhouses here and there along the coast. At a popular bathhouse, you can feel as refreshed as if you are bathing in the ocean.

Japan’s longest footbath, “Hot Foot 105,” is 105 meters long and matches the temperature of the hot spring: 105 degrees Celsius. Enjoy the gorgeous sunset while soaking your feet in the bath.
There are various facilities for different purposes, such as a walking footbath, a footbath that you can enjoy with your pets, and steam cookers for food. Food cooked with onsen steam enhances the flavor and is very delicious.

Obama Champon (noodle) is one of the local specialty dishes of Obama. Characterized by light and refreshing soup and thick noodles, it includes a generous amount of fresh local ingredients on top.

Editor’s comment:
ORANGE GELATO is highly recommended, among the various kinds of homemade gelato made with fresh local ingredients from Nagasaki Prefecture or from Shimabara Peninsula. Eating while soaking your feet in the footbath makes it even more delicious.

●For inquiries or information    Obama Tourist Information Center    Tel: 0957-74-2672
Copyright: Nagasaki Prefecture Convention and Tourism Association

Access Haneda Airport -> 1 h 50 min by air -> Nagasaki Airport -> 30 min by bus -> Isahaya Terminal -> 50 min by bus -> Obama Onsen
URL https://obama.or.jp/

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The information herein is as of April 2022
I was born in Kagoshima Prefecture and have lived in different parts of Kyushu. A lover of food, sake, and hot springs in Kyushu, my goal is to become a “Sen-nin” (hot spring master), the highest rank for those who accomplish the “Tour of the Eighty-eight Hot Springs in Kyushu.” I hope to convey the fascinating aspects of Japan while featuring my beloved homeland Kyushu!

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