After our first visit to Tokyo, we spent the following days relaxing at traditional ryokans.
We arrived in Fujikawaguchiko, a small town that surrounds Lake Kawaguchi (one of the scenic Fuji Five Lakes), where you can see beautiful Mt. Fuji. We first saw the mountain on our train ride coming into the town.
Once arriving into the town, we went to our first ryokan, Shuhoukaku Kogetsu, where our room had a fantastic view of Mt. Fuji! It was unbelievable.
After dropping off our bags, we took the Mt. Fuji Panoramic Ropeway to get epic views of the famous mountain. We even saw an adorable Shiba Inu which of course made our day even brighter! She was so cute!
Before heading to another viewpoint, we had our afternoon dessert snack of two kinds of delicious cheesecake. Yum!
Our next viewpoint was at Chureito Pagoda where we had to walk almost 400 steps for more gorgeous views of Mt. Fuji. If we came a few weeks later, the cherry blossom trees would have been in full bloom.
After exploring the small town we headed back to our ryokan where we enjoyed the onsens. Luckily, I was the only one in the female hotspring which was extremely relaxing. I could even get a glimpse of Mt. Fuji from the outdoor onsen.
By the time we went back to our room, the sun was setting and the view of Mt. Fuji was incredible.
Dinner is included in the accommodation where we had another traditional kaiseki meal. Highlights included the pork hotspot and the rice with eel.
The following morning I went to the onsen before our breakfast. It was once again empty which was so serene especially with the amazing view.
Near the dining hall of the ryokan, they had a beautiful open viewpoint where you could perfectly see Mt. Fuji. Who could ever get tired of seeing this extraordinary view?! Breakfast was also delicious filled with nutritious treats.
Our next destination was Hakone, a mountainous town known for hotsprings just a few hours away from Fujikawaguchiko. We had to take several local buses to reach our ryokan but it was well worth the effort! We stayed at Musashino Bekkan where our room was enormous!
Halfway up the ropeway we stopped at Ōwakudani where the volcanic valley has active sulphur vents and hot springs. I had never seen anything like it before! They also have “speciality” foods such as kuro-tamago (black eggs cooked in the hot spring ponds) and black ice cream (just vanilla ice cream that’s been colored).
After sightseeing, we returned back to our ryokan. Before dinner, I had a full body massage inside my room which was wonderful and much needed. Dinner was another kaiseki meal where our main course was live abalone cooked over a open flame. It was an interesting experience as I had never seen that done in person. While I was hesitant to eat it, it was suprinsgly pretty tasty (I don’t have any photos of it).
At our ryokan, you can reserve a timeslot for the private onsen which was completely surrounded in nature.
The following morning before heading back to Tokyo, we had a full breakfast spread. Amazing!
Both Mt. Fuji and Hakone were well worth the travel. We were lucky as both destinations weren’t crowded as they would typically be during the springtime. If I ever return to either of those areas, I would definitely stay more than one night each as there are so many attractions to see!