Kagoshima’s most stirring sight, the volcanic cone of Sakurajima (桜島) grumbles away just 4km from the city centre, pouring a column of dense black ash into the air. This is one of the world’s most active volcanoes, and hiking its peak has been prohibited since 1955 – adventurous sorts should know that security cameras have been installed around the mountain. However, Sakurajima remains a great place to head for an onsen: unlike most such facilities around the country, the island’s smouldering cone provides tangible proof of just how its water has been heated.

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