The first stop on our trip was to Nasu Okashi Heartland where we were able to see sweets being made and ate lunch! Then we were allowed to shop for sweets so I bought some cakes!
(I think my Dad has told me enough times in my life that I throw like a girl so I didn't want everyone to see that)
I can't say anything about the men's onsen because I didn't go anywhere near it, so this will all be about the women's onsen: walking in there are baskets to place anything you brought down in: toothbrush, room key, clothes, etc. So for starters you take off all your clothes and put them in a basket (didn't expect that one from super conservative Japan did you?) you then enter the main room that is inside where you clean yourself off. Either shampoo your hair and then put it up or put it in a shower cap. Then get yourself squeaky clean before getting into the onsen. After that you can take a bucket to slowly start pouring the hot water on your feet, then your legs, then your stomach and back, and then your shoulders to get accustomed to the water. And then? You get into the water and enjoy.
Most onsens have an indoor and an outdoor bath. Taking a steamy hot bath in a pool of big pretty rocks while looking at the night sky and snow on the hills around you? Pure bliss by my standards. Actually, my muscles are aching and I'm looking for the next onsen I want to go to!
After tasting rice crackers we got back on the bus for our last destination: a strawberry farm. Let me start with this: strawberries are WAY TOO DARN expensive in Japan so I haven't had many while I have been here, but they are in a lot of shops and very deliciously tempting to my wallet. My forces were almost entirely worn down when I found out we were going to a strawberry park. So let me explain this park/farm thing to you. You pay a fee to the farm and they give you a little cup and put some sweetened condensed milk in it and then they set you loose in one of the areas they are growing strawberries for a certain length of time. And then its a battle between your mind and your stomach until the time runs out.
By the time I left that strawberry farm I felt VERY fat and happy and full of strawberries. Sorry for the lack of photos, I was busy stuffing my face with delicious strawberries; the freshest, juiciest, most wonderful strawberries I have ever had.
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I'm also thinking about starting a new thread with lessons I've learned here. For example: how to wear yukata, the way of Japanese everyday green tea, shopping in Japan, etc. If you would like to see this please say NEW THREAD in the