15 Sep, 2010
Hokkaido is blessed with a great number of fantastic natural resources such amazing snow, forests, lakes, wildlife and an abundance of natural hot springs. One such hot spring or onsen is Bansei onsen which is possibly one of the most remote coastal onsens in Hokkaido.
This onsen is not really an attraction in itself but is certainly worth checking out if you happen to find traveling in the area. It is located about 50kms south of Obihiro and a similar distance from Kushiro. It is quite possible you may find yourself near or passing by Bansei en route to another destination and it makes for a great and slightly unusual place for a rest, just for lunch or for the night.
The Onsen services a tiny hotel and a nice camping area with ocean views. The main draw cards to the area appear to be the beach, wildlife, wetlands and salmon fishing. The onsen ‘complex’ has a fantastic Tatami rest room and a restaurant serving traditional, hearty Japanese fare.
During the late summer and early autumn months you will find the beach below the onsen streaked by rows upon rows of fishing rods manned by patient fisherman waiting for a salmon strike. Further down the beach to the south you may catch a glimpse of the mighty Red Crowned crane or Tancho. And a bit further down you will find the worlds smallest rocket launching station, past this point is for you to discover.