Sights of Hakone Reviews
May 10, 2007
There is so much to see and do in Hakone National Park area its hard to know where to begin.
I recommend purchasing the Hakone Free Pass or Hakone weekday pass which is even cheaper if you travel up there on weekday. The Hakone free pass is valid for 3 consecutive days and the Hakone weekday pass is valid for 2 consecutive days. You can purchase the pass at 3 major JR (Japan Rail) stations - Shinjuku, Machida or Odawara. The pass allows you to take the train up to Hakone, use all the transportation in the area and gives you discounts into some of the attractions. Its great value for money.
The best way to see all of Hakone is to start with the Hakone round course. Once you arrive in Hakone start at the Hakone-Yumoto train station. Here are the details of the Hakone round course.
* Hakone Yumoto station take the Bus to the Amazake-Chaya Tea house and get off here. Just back and to the left behind the tea house is the start of the Old Tokaido Highway. Make sure you go left and start walking along the Old Tokaido Highway.
* Note the road can be a little uneven and steep in parts of it also you need to cross the main road at one point.
* Follow this down to the end and you will come out at Moto Hakone.
* To the left you will go down the street and see a big red tori gate if you go past this you can walk down Acient Cedar Avenue.
* From here you can take the boat on Lake Ashi to Togendai. Get off in Togendai there are a few resturants around here.
* From Togendai take the Hakone Ropeway to Owakudani.
* Owakudani is a huge crator that puts out sulfurous fumes and in the area is a hot spring you can go to as well as try one of the famous black eggs cooked by the sulfur fumes. It is believed to be good for your health. There is a small souviner shop in the area.
* From Owakudani you can take the Hakone Ropeway across the valley to Sounzan.
* From Sounzan take the cable car to Gora.
* Gora station area there are a few shops and also Gora Park is in the area. I recommend going to Gora Park its beautiful.
* From Gora take the train back to Hakone-Yumoto station.
This is the round course. It took from 9am to 4pm to do this.
Either when you purchase the Hakone Free pass or Hakone weekday pass or When you arrive at Hakone Yumoto train station be sure to pick up timetables for all of the transportation so you can plan your day. Across the road from the Hakone-Yumoto station is a tourist information centre.
I recommend taking food, snacks and drinks with you to have a long the way. There are shops, convience store and resturants around the Hakone-Yumoto station area. Otherwise till you get to Moto Hakone or Gora there isn't much else between where you can buy food.
At the end of the day why not try one of the many Hot springs or even stay overnight at one of the Hot spring hotels.
My recommendation is Kappa Tengoku which is a 3 min walk just above the Hakone Yumoto station or take the free shuttle bus just outside the Hakone Yumoto train station to Hakone Begonia Garden Himeshara Hot Springs. It's 1050 Yen for just the bath and 1450 Yen for the bath and the begonia garden.
Hakone Begonia Garden
If you want to stay at a hot spring hotel I recommend staying at Hakone Tenseien there are 5 different hot springs in this hotel. I stayed at the attched part of the hotel called HIENKAKU Annex in the Garden view Japanese style room its cheaper than staying at the Tenseien hotel and will give you a traditional Japanese experience rather than a western style stay. I didn't take the breakfast or dinner and it was very reasonable to stay there around 6,500 yen per person per night if its during the week.
I highly recommend Hakone as a must see while in Japan.
Part of the My experience of 6 years of Living and Teaching in Japan travel blog
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