Enjoy the onsen to warm body and soul
Kumano Kodo in Wakayama Prefecture has been registered as a World Heritage site as part of the Sacred Sites and Pilgrimage Routes in the Kii Mountain Range. On the road that many people have traveled on their way to Kumano, you can sense the sacred atmosphere enveloped in the fresh greenery. During the pilgrimage to Kumano, what was popular as a place of cleansing was a small rock bath surrounded only by simple wooden planks. The fact that it just popped up along the Yunotani River left quite an impression. It is said that people who went up to Kumano Hon-gu Shrine nearby came to Tsubo-yu to wash themselves before making the pilgrimage to the shrine. As the name states (“tsubo” means “pot”), Tsubo-yu is a tiny place that can only hold only up to 2-3 people. Its fame also comes from the fact that according to the level of sunlight and the quality of the water on a certain day, the water will change 7 different colors on that day. In the hole in the rock that was carved out by nature, there is a hot spring that naturally flows out. You will really want to try out this mysterious onsen that has soothed numerous pilgrims to Kumano Hon-gu. Tsubo-yu has a system in which you can use it up to 30 minutes at a time. At the reception area, you receive a numbered tag and then enter the bath in order. Crowding is also perfectly fine. In the vicinity, there is a historical onsen village and not too far away on foot, Kumano Hon-gu is right there so you can wait your turn while taking a stroll.
Check out the tourist spots in the area
Next to Tsubo-yu, you can also enjoy places such as Yunomine Public Baths which has a medicinal bath along with the usual baths, a bath pipe which boils eggs in the hot spring water and shops where you can have light meals, all within an onsen village. The stone-paved walking trail has plenty of spirit and the nearby river also has a warm foot bath. As you enjoy a leisurely time, you will appreciate the beautifully historic World Heritage site of Kumano.