How to use “SENTO” (Japanese public bath)?


Do you know a public space called “SENTO”?

Sento is a public bath of the japanese style which became popular among common people in the Edo period. Formerly people went to a Sento everyday, because they didn’t have a private bath at their house.

Of course, Sento is a place for taking a bath. However, Sento had been cherished by common Japanese people as a communication place. Although a number of sentos are decreasing year by year,  its are loved by a lot of people even now.

Many kind of people such as children, students and workers come to Sento. Therefore, there are rules to use a Sento comfortably each other.

You must follow the Sento rules below…

“Don’t durty, Don’t be noisy, Don’t monopolize” 

Please keep the 3 main rules in your mind.
Now, let’s go on to learn how to use Sento!

<Entrance ~Taking a bath> 

1.Take off your shoes and put them into the shoe cupboard.

2.Pay a entrance fee to a staff at the “Bandai”(reception)


3.The entrance of the bath room is separated by sex. 

4.Take off your all clothes and put them in a basket at the changing room.

5.Keep your valuable goods in a locker


You have to bring bath goods such as towel, soap, shampoo and so on by yourself. But don’t worry, you can buy these at the bandai.

Unfortunatly, if you have a tattoo, you may be not able to enter Sento… Most of Sentos don’t accept a person who has a tatoo.


Wash your body and pour hot water on yourself before getting into the bath. Just be careful not to splash hot water around you.

After you wash your body, you have to move your bath goods from the washing area and make a space for a next person.


When you enter the bath, firstly it is better to choose water of  the proper temperature not the hot.

Sit back and relax in the bathtub. Entering the bath is good for your health and beauty!
Also you can enjoy chatting with people who entering the bath together.

There are also some rules in the bathtub. You have to follow these!!

・Don’t swim in the bath
・Don’t put your towel in the bath
・Don’t put your hair into the water
・Don’t rub your body in the bath
・Don’t monopolize the space,and give way to each other.


After getting out of the bath, wipe yourself well with your body washing towel before moving from the bathroom to the changing room.

Then, wipe your body sufficiently and put on your clothes.

<After taking a bath>

You can relax at the lobby of Sento. There are fans, massage chairs, TV and so on.

And don’t forget to supply water!
Sento has a variety of drinks. Especially, milk or coffee milk is very popular drink at Sento.
Drinking milk or coffee after taking a bath is one of the tradition in Japan!

There are about 450 Sentos in Kyoto.
Japanese people still love Sento very much even though they have private bath at their house.

Communicating each other in a bathroom called “Hadaka no tsukiai (socializing by naked)”

Why don ‘t  you try “Hadaka  no Tsukiai” with Japanese people at a Sento!