Exploring Arima Onsen – of hotsprings, cold brews and senbei

Of Onsen Towns in Japan, this one is definitely worth a side trip from Osaka.

The Purple Press

Just 30 minutes away from the bustling city of Kobe lies Arima Onsen 有馬温泉, one of Japan’s oldest hotspring towns. Nestled away in a natural hillside setting, this is the perfect place to while away a leisurely day and relax in the curative mineral-rich waters of a ryokan in the evening.

Arima still sported verdant foliage accompanied by sunny days and blue skies in mid-September this year. While exploring the narrow backlanes in between traditional wooden buildings, we took every opportunity to escape the heat by ducking into little cafes for local beer and iced lattes, as well as savouring the much-lauded Arima gelato and cider. With many souvenir shops offering samples of the famous Tansan Senbei (炭酸せんべい), which is a light cracker infused with the waters of the Ginsen (Silver Onsen), we invariably ended up with a huge stash of these crispy goodies to cart home.

The evening saw us…

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