Start planning your wellness vacation in Japan
Wellness vacations in Japan are all about slowing down, exploring spirituality and soaking up some of the finest views in the world. With some of the most beautiful natural landscapes on the planet, intriguing tea rituals, and soothing mineral baths, if you’re looking to get away from the chaos of modern life, you’ll be truly energized on a wellness trip in Japan.
What makes Japan a great destination for a wellness trip?
Japan is an archipelago located in East Asia's Pacific Ocean, characterized by a string of around 4,000 islands. The four main islands are Hokkaido, Honshu, Shikoku, and Kyushu, and it’s here you’ll find the best wellness experiences. Japan has a rugged and mountainous terrain, often thick with forest that’s perfect for hiking. Visit sacred shrines, relax in mineral-rich natural hot springs, or simply try mindfulness among the country’s gorgeous natural wonders.
The best wellness experiences in Japan
With plenty of wellness activities across the country, here are some of the top experiences to be had on a trip to Japan.
Hike to the Fushimi Inari Shrine
Hiking to the ancient Fushimi Inari Shrine is a great way to enjoy some invigorating exercise in a spiritual and peaceful place. Located in Kyoto, this sacred shrine can be found in the middle of the mountains, an enjoyable three-hour hike away. When you arrive at the destination, the sacred shrine is the perfect place for a meditation session.
Bathe in an onsen
A Japanese onsen is traditional, mineral-rich hot spring, many of which have been around for thousands of years and are often revered for their healing properties. Open-air onsen provide visitors with a calming experience to unwind in, with magnificent views of the surrounding mountains and forests. Hakone, just a two hours from Tokyo by train, has some of the finest thanks to the volcanic activity in the region.
Spend an afternoon at a tea garden
Japan is home to some of the best gardens in the entire world, and many are perfect for traditional tea ceremonies. Come to relax in the garden, then indulge in the traditional tea ceremony in which you’ll taste local sweets and sip green tea. There are many health benefits that come with consuming traditional tea, as it has a high antioxidant content to help boost the immune system.
Enjoy a delicious kaiseki meal
Japan’s cuisine is vast and varied, and one of the best ways to enjoy it is by indulging in a kaiseki. Kaiseki is a multi-course meal, which usually includes 14 courses of small dishes. Often a low-calorie and nutrient-rich feast, dishes served during will use fresh, seasonal ingredients with plenty of seafood and vegetables.
Practice the art of kyudo archery
For an unusual way to experience wellness in Japan, try kyudo. Kyudo is a Japanese martial art which involves a bow and bamboo arrows. It combines strength with Zen principles, including meditation for increasing focus as well as other mindfulness skills.
Tips for a planning wellness getaway in Japan
If you’re planning a wellness trip in Japan, try to visit from March to May or from September to November for the best weather. These two periods bring pleasant weather with bright and clear skies.