It's not just snow monkeys who enjoy soaking in an onsen in the cooler months - capybaras love it, too! These animals are native to South America and hold the title of the largest living rodents in the world. The Suzaka City Zoo in Nagano Prefecture is currently hosting a capybara hot spring event until April 25th, where visitors can appreciate these capybaras soaking away while surrounded by flowers, apples, or yuzu (a type of citrus fruit) depending on the season.
The zoo is within the grounds of Garyu Park which is famous for being one of Japan's Top 100 sakura viewing spots, and the best time to catch the trees in bloom is typically from the first to third week of April based on previous year's events. Time it right and you can visit the capybaras and enjoy cherry blossom season on the same visit.
Do note that this attraction only happens at specific times of the day: 11:00 to 11:30 am on weekdays, and 11:00 to 11:30 am and 2:00 to 2:30 pm on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays.
General admission to the zoo for adults is 200 yen, and for elementary and junior high school aged students it's 70 yen.