Oita & Beppu

Oita Prefecture on the east side of southern Kyushu island is the hot springs capital of Japan, including Yufuin Onsen and the natural “hells” (dramatic hot springs for viewing, not bathing) of Beppu. The prefecture is more than just hot springs, however. Travel the Kunisaki Peninsula and you’ll get to see the traditional architecture of old samurai residences and a Buddha carved from a giant boulder. Ōita was also ranked as having the highest number of foreign students relative to population in Japan, with individuals from 101 different countries.