Located at about 100 km from Tokyo, Hakone is one of the most popular sightseeing spots for one-day or short term trips. During weekends and holidays, no need to say that it’s full of people so if you have time, please visit during week time… and even if, it’s not guaranteed that you’d be alone there. But after your first visit, you may understand why everyone wants to go there.
The easiest way to get there is to buy the “Hakone Free Pass” released by the Odakyu Electric Railway company. Not only a train ticket, it gives you access to all the transportation you need to fully enjoy your trip to Hakone, and also discounts on popular attractions.
From Shinjuku station, it takes about 2 hours to get to Hakone-Yumoto station via Odawara.
When arriving at Hakone-Yumoto, you can choose between 2 routes:
• North West, the classic: Hakone-Yumoto, Gora, Sounzan, Togendai, Ashi Lake, Moto-Hakone/Hakone-Machi, Hakone-Yumoto
• South West: Hakone-Yumoto, Moto-Hakone/Hakone-Machi, Hakone-Yumoto, Ashi Lake, Togendai, Sounzan, Gora, Hakone-Yumoto
Whatever route you choose to take, you’ll be able to see and visit the same things. Our tip: making your decision once arrived in Hakone-Yumoto, after having checked if the train was crowded. If so, we recommend choosing the second option.
Highlights of the trip:
1. “floating” Torii of Hakone Jinja shrine
2. Ropeway between Togendai and Sounzan
3. Hakone Jinja shrine
4. By clear weather, the wonderful view of Mount Fuji and Hakone Jinja from Hakone-Machi
5. Hakone Open Air Museum
Not to miss next time:
• Soaking into one of the 17 onsen of Hakone-Yumoto
• Trying black egg in Owakudani
• Staying the overnight in one of Ashino Lake’s resorts