If there’s one thing that I want to remember in detail from my trip to Tokyo last month, it’d be the Oedo-Onsen Monogatari experience. Translation: naked hot spring amusement park 😂.
Actually when I first came across the hot spring, I didn’t know we’d have to be naked. I got attracted by the word “amusement park”. The video showed girls wearing yukata, walking around in a Japanese village — eating, playing, taking photos.
I checked the price and learned that it’s 2720 Yen (~RM99.70). I thought if we got to walk around in yukata, eat, play and enjoy many hot spring baths within that price from 11am until 2am, it’d be a steal.
The catch is it’s a steal only if you get naked for the onsen (hot spring).
Included in the ticket price:
- Yukata rental
- Japanese garden themed foot bath
- Indoor big baths — natural hot spring, cold bath, micro nano bubble, jacuzzi [naked]
- Steam room [naked]
- Sauna room [naked]
- Outdoor bath — barrel bath [naked]
- Access to shower facilities [naked]
- Access to TV room (individual TV on reclining chair)
- Free flow green tea
Not included in the ticket price:
- Food and beverage
- Rock salt sauna
- Fish therapy
- Private rooms (for rest or overnight sleep)
I found discounted tickets selling on Klook for about RM60 so definitely it’s a steal already, especially in Japan’s high cost of living. In addition, it’s a cultural experience for us to try onsen the Japanese way: naked.
The visit to the onsen was planned for our 6th night in Tokyo. It’s to rejuvenate after all the tiring walks and commute in Tokyo.
We had a lot of time to contemplate and talk about going naked for the onsen. But I already bought the tickets online in Malaysia before our trip so we had to go no matter what. At worst, we’d just go in for the yukata. Still cheaper than renting yukata outside (or kimono since it’s Autumn when we visited) 😂.
Admission starts at 11am until late so I planned a full day at Tsukiji Market for breakfast and spending the day at Odaiba before ending the night at the onsen. Not sure if we were deliberately delaying the time or what. We were supposed to head to the onsen after sunset (5pm) but we were still in Diver City shopping for Gundam at 6.30pm.
By the time we figured out how and where to catch the free shuttle bus from Tokyo Teleport Station to Oedo-Onsen Monogatari, we arrived at the onsen at 7pm. And then we realized we’d have to leave the onsen using the same shuttle bus at 10.30pm in order to safely have enough time to commute back to our Airbnb before subway closes at midnight.
I honestly didn’t read enough about the onsen before going. I only saw like a 15-second clip in a video detailing 100 must-do things in Tokyo and the onsen website. That’s it.
We weren’t sure if we’d really have to be naked to enjoy any of the onsen there. We didn’t know what’s included and not included in the ticket. I only knew we’d get to wear yukata once we enter the amusement park. I didn’t even know it’s an indoor amusement park until I got in!
So we removed our shoes and kept them in the endless shoe cabinets once we arrived. Then we presented our tickets at the check in counters and were directed straight to the yukata collection counter. We picked the pattern that we wanted in our sizes (charted based on height) and grabbed a colorful sash/belt.
The entrance to the inside of the amusement park was the changing room — male and female separated.
It’s a big room filled with lockers. We found our designated lockers and started looking around for the changing room. Then we realized the locker room was the changing room itself. We had to remove our clothes and change into the yukata in front of our lockers 😳. What happened to “at worst, we’d just go in for the yukata”? 😭
I actually walked the entire locker room to make sure there really isn’t any changing room. I saw other females naked during my check so that validated my finding too. *gulp*
Don’t remember how long we stood in front of our locker trying to figure out how to least expose ourselves. We ended up taking turns to change at a corner behind some lockers 😂.
Tip: Don’t have to remove bra and panty under the yukata.
Of course, we took a long time more to figure out how to tie the yukata nicely. In the end, we just tied however we wanted because we tried and failed too many times. LOL.
RK looked like he has waited too long when we came out from the changing room like 15 minutes later.
I was initially worried that we’d be cold in yukata when it’s 17°C outside but found out that the Japanese village is actually an indoor space. The ceiling is painted to look like night sky so it’s not actually outdoor. Haha.
We took photos and started exploring and learning about the place. Trust us that we went to every corner of the amusement park to ensure we knew what’s in the not-naked package 😂. We even got to the onsen locker to ask if we could check out the onsen with our clothes on first. Nope. Access denied.
50 minutes after changing into our yukata, at the TV room, we started texting each other on WhatsApp.
And that’s how we suddenly ended up going into the naked Onsen together…
Since we had to go separate ways again, we said we’d meet each other again 30 minutes later.
Not sure about the boys but the girls took easily 10 minutes just to get ourselves naked in the onsen locker room. It felt like forever anyway. We even had to get guidance from a naked kind Japanese what to do with our towels and clothes. We were still wearing our yukata during that conversation. 😅
We had a lot of “now?”, “are we doing it?”, “you sure?”, “OMG”, “you took off edi?”, etc before we turned our backs and not look beyond each other’s chin. 🤣🤣🤣
So basically we had to remove our yukata, bra and panty. We basically had nothing left on. We were given a big towel that we had to keep in the locker and a small tower that we could bring into the onsen (but not into the water).
We conveniently covered our front by placing the small tower vertically even though most people in the onsen didn’t bother covering anything. Easy to tell the first timers from the regulars. Hahaha.
There were simple instructions to rinse the body with warm water when entering the onsen but the etiquettes were not spelled out in detail after the rinse. The hot spring that I visited (though didn’t try) in Taiwan had step-by-step, including when and how to clean yourself, the order of the hot spring to go into, how long to stay in each hot spring, etc.
We were pretty clueless in the onsen but we quickly realized that we would not be out in 30 minute. LOL.
It probably only took us 10 minutes in the baths to say, “OMG this is actually very nice. I love it. Can we stay longer?”
We made a quick run to the locker to text the boys that we’d be staying 45 minutes longer. Hahaha.
The girls ended up trying about 8 baths before we washed ourselves at the sitting shower stalls.
We took another 20 minutes to dry ourselves and get dressed. It was such a pampering experience to shower there because everything was given and after a good onsen, we just felt like we had to use all the products: facial wash, shampoo, conditioner, body shampoo, toner, moisturizer, anti aging cream, hair protector, hair treatment oil, hair dryer, sterilized comb, cotton bud, etc. Drama much? 😂
When we were out, we found out the boys waited for us for one hour cluelessly because our text didn’t reach them. They were so hungry that they helped themselves to some gyoza and snack already 😂😂😂. Oops.
It’s already past 10pm by the time I bought a Harajuku crepe and took more photos with my yukata and freshly blown hair. LOL. 3.5 hours in the amusement park was not enough!
RK made me quickly finish the crepe and we dashed out of the place to catch our bus right before it left. It was quite nerve wrecking because we had to check out and pay our bills after changing out of our yukata — we were given wristbands to make cashless purchases in the amusement park.
Our next but final challenge was to stay awake during our commute back because it’s so easy and nice to sleep after a good onsen. 😴😴😴😴
And that’s the end of our super memorable first time at a Japanese naked onsen with friends. No regret doing it. It’s at the top of my favourite things done at Tokyo. But I have to say doing it once doesn’t mean I’m all comfortable to do it again, especially with different friends. 😂😂😂