We’d never have you come all this way without recommending a day in Beppu’s hell-themed hot baths. Other, more understated onsen hot bath resorts are of course also available, as are stunning lakes and mountains and caves. And the chance to take a bath in hot sand. Oh, and many barrelsfull of monkeys. And a village devoted to traditional crafts, and– This unassuming prefecture in the west of Kyushu is truly a gold mine… Oh, and did we mention there’s a gold mine? Food-wise, well, it’s all the comforts: deep-fried chicken and soft serve ice cream. (Oita’s known as ‘soft cream heaven’!) And Japanese-style dumplings. And the very fine fresh seafood of the southern island’s coast, cooked to perfection in the steam surging up from hell. Dig in.