Saturday, July 7, 2012

spoiling ourselves on a saturday at KINOSAKI ONSEN!

9.a.m. the alarm goes of and we wake up. Today is a bit special, we have to change our room temporarily because of the mishap with the reservation I have told you earlier about but no problems there, we just took our stuff out of the room and that was that. Today we're doing a trip outside of Kyoto to Kinosaki onsen. It's  located about 3 hours from Kyoto and is a hot spring town, small but beautiful and most important renowned  for it's hot springs. We ate our breakfast at Delifrance, near the station. This is the place I have written about during my last trip to Japan, last winter. They still served the delicious Croisant with a serving of sallad and a cold cut and coffee, so this is what I chose again and took a melonpan or "melon" bread as an extra delight for myself. The name for this sweet bun comes from the shape of the surface since it is cut to diamond shapes before going to the own, giving it, when ready, the shape of an small "melon".
Morning set
I myself have tried to make these sweets at home since they are so delicious and recommend you do so also.
Here is a link to a good recipe: http://home-baking.net/english/bread/melon-bread.php. I encourage you to have a go! 
Well back to my day. We then walked to the station and ordered the tickets to Kinosaki onsen, the JR-Pass saved us some money again since the train going there is operated by JR. Yay! 
Well we still had some time before the train left so we spent this time spinning around at the JR Isetan, a mall inside the station. We bought some sandwiches and sodas to the train and boarded. After a few hours and just one small change of trains we were finally there. The sight was amazing, this little town with cool houses from times of ye' old. The views that had passed us on the train were already breath taking but this took it to another level since we actually could breath history and bathe in it (literally). We took of to the first onsen, and man oh man was it good. Fist there is the outside of the onsen where there is a foot bath. The water was warm and refreshing. We sat there a good while until we moved inside. We then took and bought the pass for one day to allow us to go to every onsen in the town! The ticket was really cheap, only 1000 yens and convenient. Inside we went through  the men's changing room to the men's bathing area. There was an inside part and an outside part. We went through all the inside baths + the steam sauna that we found, then we went upstairs for the outside bath, it was my favorite. There was also a normal sauna outside but it is different from the Finnish saunas since you can't throw water on the heater, sad but acceptable. Then we went and washed and were on our way. We bought our tickets back in an early phase of this trip since we wanted to make sure that we got seats on the train back. Well then after buying the tickets we went to our next bath that was much more hotter. We passed on our way some local gift shops and from there we bought some famous Ramune soft drinks to drink while walking. We then walked pass a little stand that sold foods. We decided to try the famous Onsen tamago witch literally means "hot spring egg". You prepare it by putting the raw eggs in a bag and then putting it in a hot spring for about ten minutes. The egg is by this time soft but not cocked hard. We bought some local beers to go with it and it was good. I myself like hard boiled eggs but still it's a great gimmick and a delicious treat anyway! 
We had to leave shortly after this so that we would not miss our train. I wished that we had have more time here, but sadly we came on a Saturday so the trains didn't go so late anymore so we had to take the 18.18 train back which was the last one today. 
 
We were tired on our way back because we had had such a relaxing day and when we arrived back at Kyoto we went to eat since we had not done so on the whole day, with the exception of the sandwiches and the eggs. We then came back to our room and did our laundry and went to sleep.