TOKYO — Japan is proud of its bathing traditions in hot springs known as onsen and public bathhouses called sento.
Westerners may feel awkward visiting these traditional baths, however, because they involve getting naked with strangers.
But nothing is more relaxing after a tiring day of sightseeing than a long soak, and it's a way to truly experience authentic culture.
The baths are separated by gender.
And with everyone else acting like it's normal, you will quickly get comfortable.
Stephanie Crohin is author of a book in Japanese about sento. She is the official volunteer ambassador for the Tokyo Sento Association and has visited over 700 sento across Japan.
Her book and Instagram feed showcases their beautiful interiors. But their numbers are declining: Last year, she says, 40 sento closed in Tokyo.