Japan 10D9N Trip: Day 4 to 6 : Hakone, Kawaguchiko, Mount. Fuji, Kyoto

Tuesday, May 02, 2017

Hello! This post covers Days 4 to 6 of my Japan trip in 2016, and it is also the second part to this series of travelogue. If you're interested to read part 1 where I covered my first 3 days in Tokyo, you can click here.

Day 4 & 5: Hakone, 箱根町
Hakone is a town known for its hot springs (onsen) , the Hakone Shrine and many tourists flock there to view the iconic Mount Fuji. 
To be very honest, Hakone was one of the highlights of my entire Japan trip and I would highly recommend at least 1-2 days in Hakone because the sights are unlike any other.
It is a place with lots of nature, beautiful mountains, clear blue skies, beautiful trees and the Hakone River is so scenic in so many different angles.

There aren't that many things to do up there in Hakone, that is why I love it. It really calls for relaxation because everything moves pretty slowly there. There aren't many shops, restaurants only a few around the river cruise center and that's about it.

It was also significantly colder up there in Hakone at only 4Deg C when we got there (Tokyo was around 8Deg C) and the floors still had a little bit of leftover snow from the winter, making it super pretty for photos.

Getting Around & Costs
We bought a Fuji Hakone Pass in Tokyo before leaving for Hakone via the Odayku Line Express Train. Take from Shinjuku Station to Odawara Station. This should take around 90-95 Mins.

This cost and every other transportation we took within Hakone was all covered in the Fuji Hakone Pass for 8,000 Yen.
Boots: Public Desire

This was the outfit I wore the entire day, a super girly and chill one with a tube top with tie sleeves details. I love how I could hide the two "bunny ears" on my arms with a jacket for a more sophisticated overall look, and show it off when I'm going for a girlier vibe.

Paired it with a blush/grey colored button down skirt, both from The Dress Room

I love how the pebbles on the ground makes the town look so "snowy" hahaha
One of the highlights of Hakone was seeing the Hakone Shrine , this Iconic vermillion colored gate that overlooks the sea.
I know Japan has these gates all over, but this is really special because the one at Hakone Shrine is exceptionally huge and is the only (that I know of, don't quote me on that haha) that has this amazing view that makes you look like you're standing out there in the sea.
Of course, expect a queue of tourists taking photos! But I would recommend the Hakone Shrine around 5PM when the sun is about to set for the best timing for photos.


Day 5: Hakone / Gotemba Premium Outlet

We started day 5 bright and early to catch the Hakone River Cruise and the Hakone Ropeway which brought us all the way up to the crater where you can enjoy the view of Mount Fuji along the way and have some Onsen Egg at the peak.

The cost of the Hakone River Cruise and Hakone Ropeway were all covered within the Fuji Hakone Pass as well. If you ask me, I would say GET THE PASS because I took a few buses and saw that a normal journey would already cost around $7-8 SGD one way, so it would be most worth it to get the pass in Tokyo if you've got the time!

Finally saw Mount. Fuji.

It was hiding behind the clouds and fog on the first day! We were told that we were really lucky to have caught it because it usually becomes less visible as the day goes by.
We could literally smell the sulfur from here! And those smoke came emitting from the volcano and the onsen itself. It was really cool and I wished I had the time for a soak in a natural outdoor onsen too but I didn't :(

An onsen egg it shall be!
Not sure why it is black but it looks like a pebble rock and it tastes exactly the same like a normal hard boiled egg LOL.

This day, I wore this gorgeous and super flattering Knit Cold Shoulder skater dress from The Dress Room. It was super comfortable, stretchy and yet very flattering at the right places. I also love how it was solid colored which made taking pictures (especially against scenery) so much easier.

The material of this piece is also surprisingly weighty and good, perfect for work and for a girls night out!

At night, we visited the Gotemba Premium Outlet and while I didn't really take any pictures of the place, it is a place I definitely would recommend to tourists because they carry a ton of brands and they are as huge as the Bicester Village in London!

Click here for a link to the brands in Gotemba

I managed to score a pair of brand new addidas trainers for only SGD$50 and most of them were going for that price! 

Day 6: Kawaguchiko

We checked into our guest house in Kawaguchiko and woke up super early to catch the Mount Fuji.
When my sister told us that the room we booked had the Fuji view, nobody expected THIS to be the view. It was gorgeous.

Mount Fuji, in all its glorious state, staring right at us through our window.
Kawaguchiko is a town that is further up closer to Mount Fuji, and to be very honest, getting around is SUPER tough and if we could have done it again, we would have planned a little bit more time for this stop and rented a car.

But its okay, at least we got to see Mount Fuji up close and it was very very worth it.

The guest house we booked was this place called Backpackers Hostel K's Guesthouse Mount Fuji
It was not cheap, and it took us 35 mins of walking to the guesthouse from the bus station. With our luggages in the cold when it was pitch dark.

I think there are many other accommodations out there in Kawaguchiko which would get you the same view at a more accessible location, so I personally don't recommend the Backpackers Hostel K's Guesthouse Mount Fuji as it was a pretty squeezy hostel with no shared toilets and no towels/toiletries and amenities provided.

After a morning of exploring in Kawaguchiko (there's really nothing much to do except to see Mt. Fuji) , we took a bus back to Tokyo and then the Shinkansen to Kyoto.
The entire journey took us 5+ hours, which wasn't very time efficient.. If given the chance to go again I would probably start from Kawaguchiko then head to Hakone, as Hakone is closer to Tokyo.

But thankfully the shinkansen was clean and comfortable as usual!

I'll continue the rest of KYOTO in another post in the future, wouldn't want this post to become painfully long. hehe!

Hope you guys enjoyed this series of photos and information!

Love
Mong

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