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Hokkaido | Noboribetsu

Jigokudani

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Jigokudani

Here you can see hot steam vents produced by volcanic activity that are the source of the hot spring water for Noboribetsu onsens. Located northeast of Noboribetsu, Jigokudani (Hell Valley) is a geothermal crater that was created from the eruption of Mount Kuttara about 20,000 years ago. The active volcano’s lava pits continue to roll with simmering black sulfur hidden under thick layers of snow. The strong smell of sulfur fills the air while the reddened earth combined with yellow gray steam coming out of various craters gives the image of Buddhist hell. The major source of the healing waters of Noboribetsu is from Jigokudani. It is able to shell out 10,000 tons of natural water per day. The temperature of the water ranges from 45 C to 90 C. There is a boardwalk in the Jigokudani that leads to Tessenchi, a geyser that shoots out boiling hot water.

Entering Jigokudani you’ll be able to see Yukijin (demon) statues. It is said that the demons protect the hot springs from evil spirits. Around Jigokudani are hiking trails that you can take to different parts of the area. A couple of the paths will take you to different boiling pools and ponds like the Oku No Yu, which is another source of hot springs for Noboribetsu. Oku No Yu emits thick layers of steam and if you look close enough you can see the water boiling. Also along the way is a small observatory where you can see Hell Valley from a different angle. Up another trail heading towards Oyunuma pond, there are great scenic views. Then along the Oyunuma River is a natural foot bath that people can try for free. While you soak your feet in the water enjoy all the foliage surrounding the river.



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