By Cathy Cawood
Awaji-shima, just a stone’s throw away from Osaka, provides an escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. It is one of Japan’s hidden gems with a string of parks and hot springs that offer a place to rejuvenate your body and mind.
Wellness Park Goshiki, situated in the southwestern part of the island, provides a particularly regenerating experience. On arrival, there is a beautiful panoramic view of the coast that can be enjoyed any time of the day. It is a lovely place for a stroll and to breathe in the fresh air from the surrounding mountains and ocean.
An onsen within the park overlooks the area and has both a Western and a Japanese style bath that is switched between men and women on a daily basis. There are five signature onsen including a hot bath, outdoor bath, whirlpool bath, electric bath and a scented bath. The scented bath is one of the most attractive points of the Goshiki onsen. Infused with natural ingredients such as apple and ginger or pepper and ginger, it is said to treat fatigue, tired muscles and skin problems. Like most onsen in Japan, shampoo, conditioner and body soap are provided in the showers. Any extra amenities such as towels may be purchased for a small price at the entrance.
After the onsen, relax on the tatami with a cup of vinegar apple juice to quench your thirst or grab a cold drink from the vending machine. Once you feel rejuvenated, be sure to take a look at the souvenir store on your way out to wrap up your experience. Standard entrance at Wellness Park Goshiki is ¥600, but there are a variety of discounts and events each month such as men's day (Tuesdays), kids' day (Thursdays) and women's day (Fridays) when entrance is half-price. So what are you waiting for? Enjoy a stress-relieving day at Wellness Park Goshiki on Awaji-shima.
At Kobe's Sannomiya Station take the Kamihime-Tankou Highway Bus directly to Goshiki Wellness Park (84 min). If you are traveling from Osaka, it is recommended to take a train from Osaka or Shin-Osaka Station to Kobe Sannomiya Station and transfer to bus.
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