After leaving Tokyo and the typhoon behind, we traveled a little way south to a mountain town in the Hakone district.
Because the tyhpoon disrupted train and bus schedules, it was very difficult to get to Hakone-Yumoto (the town we stayed in). I’ll just bypass that stressful evening of buses, trains, walking, etc., and get to the good part.
Hakone-Yumoto is a quaint tourist village with gorgeous nature surrounding it. Mt. Fuji can be seen in the distance, beyond a few lakes, and is very popular with Japanese travelers. Hot springs abound in Hakone-Yumoto, so many hotels have onsens, or public baths. I had been to a jjimjilbang before, so I wanted to check out Japanese baths and see how it compared.
But first: Lake Ashi and Mt. Fuji!
We took a winding path up and over a mountain on a public bus to get from our airbnb to the lakeside village of Hakone-Mori. It was very cloudy that day, so we strolled along the shoreline just hoping Mt. Fuji would burst through the clouds. Many tourists drive to Hakone-Mori, take a boat across the lake, ride a cablecar up a mountain, and return to Yumoto village after about four or five hours. We didn’t want to spend that much money, so Jordan just went on a quick sightseeing boat ride.
Although we didn’t go at a great time–the typhoon made everything difficult, from transportation to photos, the area is really beautiful. I’d happily go back and spend a long weekend there.
Japan has beautiful cedar trees! I had no idea how much I loved cedar trees until we saw groves of them here. Although the Japanese are known for being tech-savvy and city-dwellers, they love their nature and have many parks, trails, and lakes dedicated to resting in the great outdoors.
And there she is! Mt. Fuji herself! A beloved landmark, Fuji represents the pride, beauty, and determination of Japanese culture. We were so pleased that the clodus cleared long enough for a photo.
I know I haven’t included a lot of transportation information of coming and going, but if anyone planning a trip has questions, let me know. We made a few mistakes along the way (as helpful and friendly as Tokyo folks are, they don’t know how to leave their city very well and offer odd advice). After a time sightseeing, we hopped on the bullet train and went far, far south to Hiroshima.