In Japanese households, the bathtub is left filled with hot water until everyone has taken a bath. Japanese baths are generally deeper than Western baths, which allows a person to enjoy a shoulder-deep soak in the tub. A ryokan is a Japanese inn that is very different from a Western-style hotel. A typical ryokan room is usually divided into one or two rooms.There are rooms with tatami mats and a small private bath. Each room has a maid who brings your meals to your room and your futon at night. Most inns have one or more communal baths, many of which are natural hot springs. Meals are often based on local specialties. Usually, Japanese inns have their own open air bathes called rotenburo. The open-air baths are popular with young and old alike. Many of Japan’s natural hot springs are a byproduct of volcanoes. And most of them contain minerals that are good for curing a variety of ailments, including rheumatism and high blood pressure. It is also said to be a blissful experience to drink warmed sake in an open-air bath while gazing at the snowy mountains.

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