Beppu is one of Japan’s most famous hot spring resorts, producing more hot spring water than any other resort in the country. There are close to 3,000 hot spring vents in Beppu City, representing more than 10% of all vents in Japan. Beppu City boasts the largest volume of hot spring water in Japan and the second-largest in the world, behind Yellowstone National Park in the United States. More than 130,000 tons of hot spring water gushes from Beppu Onsen every day. Beppu offers an unmatched range of baths to be enjoyed, including ordinary hot water baths, mud baths, sand baths and steam baths. The onsen water is rich in minerals and is good for health. Bathing in these hot springs can heal skin problems such as rough skin, as the minerals peel off the old skin. Also, the Hells of Beppu is several spectacular hot springs for viewing rather than bathing.
Known locally as Beppu Hatto, Beppu Onsen is a group of eight hot spring towns, named Beppu Onsen, Kannawa Onsen, Myoban Onsen, Kankaiji Onsen, Hamawaki Onsen, Kamegawa Onsen, Horita Onsen and Shibaseki Onsen, each with their special character. Each onsen resort has many modern and well-equipped hot spring baths as well as ryokan, where you can enjoy bathing facilities and stay as an overnight guest. Hot spring water varieties range from those high in chloride to those high in sodium bicarbonate. Many of the baths are claimed to be beneficial for illnesses like neuralgia, rheumatism, and fatigue. Aside from conventional hot water baths, Beppu offers sand baths where bathers are buried in naturally heated sand, steam baths that are heated by the steam of a hot spring, and mud baths that are muddy hot water baths.
Activities: Photo stop Fee: None Time required: 45 minutes-1 hour
Beppu's Jigoku—also known as the Seven Hells of Beppu—got the name from the mysterious and temperamental springs here. Water and gas bubbled up from the land so violently that people in ancient times assumed it was cursed. Note that the jigoku is for viewing, not for bathing in, since they can reach temperatures of about 98 degrees Celsius. Four of them (Umi Jigoku, Chinoike Jigoku, Tatsumaki Jigoku and Shiraiike Jigoku) are designated as National Places of Scenic Beauty. Umi Jigoku features a pond of boiling, blue water; Chinoike Jigoku is a pond of hot, red water; Tatsumaki Jigoku features a boiling hot geyser and Shiraiike Jigoku is a pond of hot, milky water.
Activities: Photo stop Fee: JPY 400 per hell Time required: 15-30 minutes per hell
Mount Tsurumi is a 1375 meter high mountain that overlooks Beppu. The mountain is accessible via the Beppu Ropeway which takes visitors nearly 800 meters up the steep slopes to a small park near the summit. The park offers multiple observation decks with panoramic views of Beppu and Oita City. The actual summit of Mount Tsurumi can be reached in a 15-minute walk from the upper ropeway station. The scenery around Mount Tsurumi changes with the seasons. In early to mid-April, over 2000 cherry trees bloom around the ropeway's lower station, turning the area into one of Beppu's most popular hanami spots.
Activities: Photo stop Fee: JPY 1600 (ropeway roundtrip) Time required: 1 hour
Takasakiyama Monkey Park
Mt. Takasaki Wild Monkey Park is home to more than 1,500 wild Japanese monkeys, who spend most of their days roaming the mountain's steep, forested grounds. What's unusual here is that no nets or fences are separating you from these simians—you can wander among them at will. Just don't feed them, look them in the eye or try to touch them. Mount Takasaki's monkeys are divided into two separate troops of approximately 700 to 800 individuals each, making them some of the world's largest monkey troops.
Activities: Photo stop, Park visit Fee: JPY 520 Time required: 1 hour
As a former gateway to the West, the seaside town of Oita has many religious and European artefacts as well as a wealth of museums and art galleries. It is where Christianity once flourished. The city is blessed with a warm climate and an abundance of fresh produce from both land and sea. The central area is a leader in art, food, and culture.