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Kusatsu - Gunma Prefecture

Some of the best Japanese natural hot springs (onsens) on Honshu Island are to be found here. The slightly acidic water with the mild smell of Sulphur will gently exfoliate your skin and leave you feeling fresh as a baby.

The best onsens here are all offered for free, with the best being in the centre of town in antique buildings. This charming town has a free foot spa too.

Walking through the centre you'll be offered free freshly steamed Manju, to sample in a friendly effort to entice you to buy some …

In colder months there's a great but uncrowded ski resort. Big enough to offer trails for all skill levels; there are also places to rent ski equipment. By evening, relax in one of the many natural hot springs and enjoy roaming this charming town.

During the warmer months, there's road access almost to the top of the mountain range with stunning emerald lakes to explore and also a small alpine village.

This is one of our favourite destinations any time of year, although be sure that you let us know you're going during winter, so we fit snow tyres for a safe trip.

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