Some people go to beaches to swim in the blue waters or to build sand castles on the beaches. Others love to splash their legs against the waves or sit idle lost in thought. But people flock to Ibusuki beach in south Japan for an entirely different purpose as this seashore is known for therapeutic sand bathing.
People have been visiting Ibusuki beach for the invigorating sand baths for the past 300 years. Japanese with diabetes, back pain, asthma, rheumatism, post-stroke paralysis, hemorrhoids, menstrual disorder, constipation, obesity, infertility and anaemia travel to this beach for a sand-based cure, and this traditional way of treatment is known as sunamushi.
The presence of an active volcano in the vicinity makes the shoreline sand black in colour and also warm. It is believed that the sand has curative powers and people are willing to half bury themselves in sand for a cure.
Where is Ibusuki beach?
The beach is on Kyushu Island in south Japan and the region is known for volcanic activities. The sand on the beach gets warm due to the volcanic activity and the high concentration of minerals in the sand is attributed to the nearby active volcanoes. There are many facilities in the city where you can experiment the sand bath. The beach is always dotted with people buried in black sand from neck down and the treatment duration is 10 to 20 minutes.