Obama Onsen, Wakihama Onsen Yokujyo "Otassyan yu"
We visited Obama Onsen Wakihama Onsen Yokujyo “Otassyan yu” in Obamachō Minamihonmachi, Unzen, Nagasaki.
Jyunko welcomed us with a smile at the reception. She is a member of the owner’s family.
There are nostalgic wood lockers in the dressing room. They are really aged but amazingly attractive. These lockers have been used since 1937 when this onsen opened. Also, please be noted the doors cannot be locked, thus be careful if you want to leave your valuables.
The bathroom is full of nostalgic charm as well. The contrast of the dark-brown bathtub edge and the light-green bottom is so nice. Generally, if there are two bathtubs, one contains hot water and the other contains tepid/warm water. This is also applicable to Otassyan yu; however, in Otassyan yu, the hot bath and tepid bath switch occasionally according to the mood of frequent bathers. It’s a unique method.
Otassyan yu provides chloride hot spring, and the water is really soft and quite relaxing. The original hot spring temperature is approx. 90°C|194°F. The bathtub is emptied and cleaned up every night, and then it is re-filled with the hot spring water spending the night-time, and the bath temperature becomes moderate by the next morning at 5am. After that, frequent bathers adjust the bath temperature by increasing or decreasing the amount of the water flowing out of the faucet. So, the actual bath temperature slightly differs every day.
Fumio is 75 years old and really loves Otassyan yu. He has been coming to this bathhouse almost every day for 10 years.
Otassyan yu was opened by Jyunko’s grandfather in 1937. Jyunko tries to preserve the original building and equipment as is as far as possible, because she believes the nostalgic charm is a big attraction of Otassyan yu which differentiates from other bathhouses. According to her, the name “Otassyan yu” derives from the name of her grandmother’s sister “Tatsu.”
Otassyan yu has been loved by the locals, especially fishermen and farmers. It is said bathing at this bath can ease back pain and knee pain, and a frequent bather got rid of the pain without surgery. Fishermen take a bath in dawn before starting their work, that can charge the energy to work for them. Farmers take a bath in evening after their work, that can remove the fatigue and enable them to sleep deeply at night. The locals have been using Otassyan yu in these ways, this onsen is closely connected to the daily life.
Name: Obama Onsen Wakihama Onsen Yokujyo “Otassyan yu”
Address: 7 Obamachō Minamihonmachi, Unzen, Nagasaki
Access (Car): 1 hour 8 min from the centre of Nagasaki City. 1 hour 10 min from the Nagasaki airport
Parking Lot: 9
Opening Hours: Daily Dawn – 21:00
Price: JPY 150