Japanese Onsens Provide Virtual Reality Zen Experience

Laura Lee
May 21, 2020

It’s pretty hard to envision ourselves boarding a plane any time soon. What with the current pandemic restrictions, our 2020 travel plans have been put on hold indefinitely. However, many establishments are enabling us to see the world from our very own living rooms. From online art museum tours to virtual reality roller coaster rides, the at-home adventure opportunities are endless. Just recently, a group of Japanese hot-spring resorts decided to get in on the action and is now offering a virtual reality experience for those of us who are stuck and home and could use a little relaxation.

Arima is a Japanese resort town known for its many ancient hot springs.  Currently, the region has had to shut its doors to visitors, a plight shared by many other places around the world. Obviously, this has significantly impacted Arima’s tourism industry. However, that hasn’t stopped the town’s resort owners from offering the rest of the world some much-needed relief. Since guests can’t visit their charming town, a group of traditional inns in Arima have come together and organized a one-of-a-kind virtual reality experience. Now, people can add some zen to their day by enjoying a hot spring bath in the comfort of their homes.

Getty Images/Alexey Kopytko/Moment

“Japan’s hot springs can help heal people in quarantine around the world, as well as increase the efficacy of the quarantine,” the group of Arima resort owners said in their press release. “This way, we may, even if only slightly, help reduce infections and suffering from the new coronavirus.” The group’s relaxing videos are now available on their Youtube channel, which is called Arima Hot Springs. Among the onsens featured in the videos are Taketoritei Maruyama, Arima Sansoh Goshobessho, Takayamasou Hanano, as well as several others.