This is our last stop in this trip around Kyushu before we take the ferry from Oita to Shikoku. Oita is not really interesting but we had to stay there as all the hotels in Beppu were fully booked. Anyway, Oita is only approx 20 mins by train from Beppu.
Well, a change of plans took place when Mrs Tan Tan recommend a new place to visit, 臼杵磨崖仏 (Usuki Stone Buddha). The stone Buddha are estimated to be craved in the 12th centuries and were craved on soft rocks which means that they are easily damaged by weathering. They are awarded National Treasures status in 1995.
At the Usuki Stone Buddha area, there was this sign that pointed to a National Treasure of 5 storeys pagoda. The hike to this National Treasure takes approximately half an hour up slope with signs of beware of snakes along the way. But frankly speaking, there was no point going there as the so-called National Treasure there was disappointing.
Ok. Why are we interested in Beppu for a start? Well, in Japan, there are a few things that are famous.
- Food and
Yes. Beppu is famous for its onsen, producing more onsen water than any other area in Japan. And they are popular for sand bath where we were covered with hot sand of approximately 40 degree Celsius.
A guide on how you go about with the hot sand onsen. Firstly, you get covered with sand for approximately 10-15mins, thereafter, get a shower and finally a dip in the hot bath. And the hot sand was relax therapy to the max!
Satisfied us after the hot sand bath.
We also visited the more touristy Beppu Nine Jigoku (Hells) which basically comprises of different hot springs that are found in this area. Let me bring you through the Nine Hells.
Ok. there are only 7 of the 9 hells here as the other 2 hells are so boring that we never took much pictures. One features crocodiles which was so common and the other just a hot geyser with a green house. Both of which features stuffs which we are used to and hence.. boring.
From Oita, we took a 3 1/2 hours ferry to Matsuyama.