Ibusuki is a quaint onsen town tucked away at the southern tip of the Satsuma Peninsula in the Kyushu region, making it a convenient day trip from Kagoshima City. The most interesting attraction here is sand bathing where you’ll be buried up to the neck in sand that is naturally heated by hot spring water underneath the beach.
Sand bathing is intended to be relaxing, but it is also said to detoxify the body and refresh the skin. This makes it a popular beauty treatment with Japanese tourists, as well as a novel experience for foreign visitors. Several facilities dotting the town’s seafront offer sand baths.
How sand bathing works
Dressed in light yukata (lightweight cotton kimono), guests are invited to lie down on a secluded section of the beach. A small towel is wrapped around your head as a barrier between you and your pillow of sand, keeping your hair and face clean. Attentive staff members then proceed to cover you in the area’s distinctive hot, dark gray sand.
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