Global Life: Hot-Water High

Visiting execs discover Japan's thermal springs

I like to bathe in public. This inclination has thus far failed to attract much attention because I live in Japan. Here, hot-springs hopping is a national obsession enjoyed by wrinkled elders and stylish college girls alike. Foreign visitors often resist getting naked with strangers, but the transpacific flight alone ought to convince you. What better way to ease your aching joints than with a good long soak?

Hot-spring spas, or onsen, are found in Tokyo, but for serious relaxation, plan an overnight getaway to one of the traditional inns that have long clustered around natural springs. Just a couple of...

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