Day Trip to Mt. Fuji and Fuji Five Lakes

Day Trip to Mt. Fuji and Fuji Five Lakes
2019-02-05 Yohei Onishi

Fujigoko; the five lakes of Motosuko, Shojiko, Saiko, Kawaguchiko and Yamanako which are located beside the foot of Mount Fuji between Mount Misaka in Yamanashi prefecture.
 
These lakes were formed after the eruption. It was designated as a national scenic beauty on September 21, 2011 and all five lakes were registered as a World Heritage Site(13th place to be registered in Japan) on June 22, 2013 for being one of the sacred place and source of artistic inspiration.They hold sakura festival, herb festival, autumn leaves festival and Winter firework festival in each place associated with the season.

 

1. Spot Ranking
2. Getting in
3. Other Area List

 

1. Spot Ranking

 

10th. Suyamasengen Shrine

Suyamasengen Shrine was listed as a world heritage at the same time when Mount Fuji was designated. There are several climbing trails to enter Mount Fuji and here in Suyamasengen is one of the starting point. From long time ago, many people started from this point when climbing up Mount Fuji so they can make their good luck wishes at this shrine before starting their adventure. Inside the shrine there are many large cedar tree which you can feel the spiritual power of Mount Fuji and the long history of this place.
 
The main shrine was re-built in year 1823 but according to the shrine’s biography, the main shrine was actually built way long ago which leads to the time in Japanese mythology. It is believed that it was made in year 1524 at the latest. On the right side of the main shrine, there is a shrine called “Komiya-Shrine”. From the name and the appearance(such as shape) it was built in the 17th century and used to be the main shrine of Suyamasengen.

Access

To get here ride the Fujikyu Bus from Gotemba station and get off at “Sengen-Jinjya-Iriguchi”.

 
Details  
 

9th. Panorama Dai

Shojiko Panorama Dai(Panoramic viewing platform) is recommended on a sunny day. The mountain with the tall roof you can see between Shoji lake and Motosu lake is the viewing platform which is 1,325 meter high. There are two hiking trail that starts on both sides of the lake and they either take an hour to reach to the top. You may enjoy the hiking trail with your children.
 
Shoji lake has been a summer resort and many foreigners have visited from the 1990s. And this Panorama Dai has been one of the best tourist point of all because of the beautiful view of Mount Fuji. Moreover, you may also enjoy seeing through the whole Aokigahara Jyukai. You may enter Panorama Dai anytime of the day and there are no entry fee.

Access

You have to take a bus(Fujikyuko line) going toward “Motosu Lake” from “Kawaguchiko Station” and get off at “Shoji Lake”.

 
Details  
 

8th. Saiko Lake

A pale indigo blue colored Saiko Lake is a mysteric lake that is surrounded by Aokigahara Jyukai. There is a lake side called “Nanbahama” on the north west coast and has a superb view. You can look through Mount Fuji through Jukai from this point. If you are looking for a place where you can feel the nature most, this area is the best of all the five Fuji lakes since there is mountain, lake and forest in one place.
 
You may also visit Saiko nature center (Kunimasu Museum, Saiko bat hole) and Fugaku wind cave where you can actually explore inside the cave. Also there is “Saiko Iyashi-no-Sato Nemba” in Nemba area where you can see Mount Fuji together with thatched house.
 
During winter season there is a festival called “Saiko Ice Festival”. You can see various of gigantic ice artwork on the background of Mount Fuji. The light up after sunset turns the whole site a magical place.

Access

To get to the festival, take Saiko sightseeing bus from “Kawaguchiko Station (Fujikyuko)” and get off at “Saiko-Yacho-No-Mori-Koen”.

 
Details  
 

7th. Shiraito Falls

Shiraito Falls, which is located at Fujinomiya city in Shizuoka prefecture, is known for it’s beautiful water falling like a silk thread. It is designated as a national nature treasure and a beauty spot which came first place in “100 Landscapes of Japan” on October, 1950.
 
In year 1990 it was also listed in one of“Japan’s Top 100 Waterfalls”. There is another waterfall called “Otodome Falls” just near by. Unlikely to Shiraito Falls which the water falls gently, Otodome Falls are loud and dynamic so you can explore both waterfall all in once that has an opposite characteristic.

Access

To get to Shiraito Falls take Fujikyu Shizuoka bus going toward “Shiraito Falls(Shiraito-no-Taki)” from “JR Fujinomiya Station” and get off at “Shiraito-no-Taki-Kanko-Annaijyo-Mae”. The ride is about half an hour and it takes 5 minute walk to the waterfall after you get off the bus.

 
Details  
 

6th. Fujisan Hongū Sengen Taisha

Fujisan Hongū Sengen Taisha is a head shrine of more than 1300 Asama Shrine in nationawide. Many tourists come over every year to spend their time in this historic shrine.
 
In this shrine, it is believed that you will get good luck in love and relationships among people and has been a power spot to many women. The recommendation is the main sanctuary colored beautiful bright red which was constructed by Tokugawa Ieyasu.
 
On May 5th they hold a festival of horseback archery. This event is one of the intangible folk cultural property in Fujinomiya city.

Access

To get to Fujisan Hongū Sengen Taisha, you can walk from JR Fujinomiya station which takes about 10 minutes. Otherwise you can ride a bus that leaves from platform 4 and get off at “Wakiyama Ike”.

 
Details  
 

5th. Oshino Hakkai

Oshino Hakkai is a solemn spring water, sourceof subsoil water from Mount Fuji. It was designated as a national natural monument in 1934 and was also chosen for one of the National Top 100 Spring Water in 1985, which is a must-visit tourist point in Yamanashi prefecture.
 
The secret of the beauty of Oshino Hakkai is that it was made by a snow melt of Mount Fuji that filtered down the slopes through porous layers of lava for many years and become in very clear water. It is famous for the reflection of various face of Mount Fuji, which you can see all year associated with the season.
Oshino is also known for Soba, Yoshida Udon, Tofu and Corn.
 
There are many direct sales store from the farmer in the streets so have a try to taste their products.

Access

If you are taking a train, ride from JR Shinjuku station(Chuo line) and get off at Otsuki station. Transfer the train to Fujikyuko-Otsuki line and get off at Fujisan station. And then take a local bus bound for Uchino to “Oshino Hakkai Iriguchi(Enterance)”and transfer again bound for Hirano via Fanack or Fujikko tourist bus and get off at “Oshino Hakkai (Ohashi)”.

 
Details  
 

4th. Arakurayama Sengen Park

Since it has been introduced in Michelin Guide Book and also took the cover of Lonely Planet, Arakurayama Sengen Park has been very popular since then.
 
To get to five-storied pagoda, you have to walk for about 20 minutes. During spring, the area will be surrounded with 650 cherry blossom trees and it will also have Cherry Blossom Festival during this time. From the observation deck you can take a photo of Mount Fuji, cherry blossom and five-storied pagoda which together these three turns into one of the representative scenery in Japan.
 
In Autumn, the gateway of Arakura Sengen Shrine will be surrounded by autumn leaves and will color up the whole street into bright red all the way to Chureito Pagoda.

Access

You may enter Arakuyama Sengen Park anytime of the day. Take Mt. Fuji, World Cultural Heritage Site Loop Bus from “Kawaguchiko station” and get off at “Chureito Iriguchi (Arakurasan Sengen Koen Iriguchi)”. It take 2 minutes on foot to reach the place.

 
Details  
 

3rd. Mt. Fuji Panoramic Ropeway

Fuji Five Lakes : Lake Kawaguchiko and Fujiyoshida area

Mt. Fuji Panoramic Ropeway connects from Kawaguchiko lake side and Mount Tenjyo. Mount Tenjyo is also famous for an old story called “Kachi-Kachi-Yama” written by Osamu Dazai which is known by many Japanese.
 
The story however was set here. The story is announced in English while riding the ropeway. You can see the panoramaic view of Mount Fuji and Kawaguchiko lake on top of the mountain, as well as the other nature such as alpine plants, autumn leaves and hydrangea. As long as you have the right shoes, when descending, taking the hiking course is recommended.
 
The ropeway is open 9:00-17:20 but only in the Winter season it is 9:30-16:40. It costs 800JPY/Adult and 400JPY/child for a round trip.

Access

To get there, you can walk from Fujikyu Line Kawaguchiko station for 10 minutes. Or you can ride the Mt. Fuji, World Cultural Heritage Site Loop Bus and get off at “Pleasure Cruiser / Ropeway Ent”.

 
Details  
 

2nd. Fuji Shiba-sakura Festival

Fuji Five Lakes : Lake Motosu area

“Fuji Shiba-sakura Festival” is held every year from mid April to the end of May. This festival is the biggest Shiba-Sakura festival in the capital area, and it is held in Fuji Motosuko Resort (not at the riverside). Eight different types and eight hundreds thousand of Shiba-Sakura bloom on the foot of large scale of Mount Fuji. A pink and white Shiba-Sakura with the great Mount Fuji on the back is a spectacular view you can imagine. A walkable shoes is prefered when going to this festival.
 
There is 3.8 meter high photo spot where you can take pictures of Shiba-Sakura from above. An overlook café called “Sakura Café FUJIYAMA SWEETS”is the place where you can enjoy viewing the scenery while eating various of sweets that is made from a hotel restaurant. And during the festival there will be another festival called “Fujisan Umaimono Festival”in food and drinking vending area where you can try lots of local gourmet.
 
For this year information, Shiba-Sakura Festival will be on 13th of April(SAT) to 26th of May(SUN) 8:00-17:00.(*The open period may differ by the flowering process.) 600JPY/Adult(Above 12years old)and 250JPY/Child(Above 3years old). You may purchase tickets online as well. (English information)

Access

There is a direct bus called “Shiba-Sakura Riner”. Ride the bus from Kawaguchiko station and get off at “Fuji Shiba-Sakura Matsuri Kaijo”. The bus may change there route in case of traffic jam. There is a set ticket with the round trip and enterance fee which costs 2000JPY/Adult and 1000JPY/Child.

 
Details  
 

1st. Mount Fuji

Mount Fuji has been added to World Heritage Site and is also known for the most prominent mountain in Japan. It is also the highest of all mountain in Japan. Mount Fuji is popular for climbing but there are lots to prepare in order to climb so it is important to gather information before you go.
 
You are only allowed to climb in the Summer season. There are 4 trails in total but each trail has a different opening period. For more information please check the website here (Foreign languages available).

It’s possible to climb up to the top within a day, but the most popular trail takes about 6-7 hours (Gotemba trail is about 9 hours) to get to the top. However, it is better for your body to rest and stay over night. Moreover, you have to be careful with what you wear while climbing. You will be needing a thick outwear to prevent the cold, a rain gear, a head lamp, enough drink and proper hiking shoes are recommended.
 
If you are a beginner, we recommend you to aim your goal to Fuji Subaru Line 5th Station. Here they have lots of shops and it is open from mid April to mid December. And if you are lucky enough, you may encounter sea of clouds since it is located 2400meter high up. If you are coming from Lake Kawaguchi, Yoshida Trail is recommended. It starts from Fuji Subaru Line 5th Station and at 7th and 8th station, there is an aid station. Even in the way there are many mountain huts.
 
It is the most popular climbing trail of all 4 trails so it can get crowded as well.

Access

Take a bus (Fujikyuko line) from Fujisan station or Kawaguchiko station and the bus will reach to “Fujisan Gogome” for an hour. Round trip costs 2,200JPY/Adult and 1,100JPY/Child. (You can only purchase the ticket on the bus if the ticket office is closed)

 
Details  
 

2. Getting in

 

By Train

① From Tokyo to Kawaguchiko station
You will take JR.Chuo line and Fujikyuko local train. It takes 2 hours from Tokyo station to Otsuki station by using JR Chuo line.(In some train you need to transfer at Shinjuku station and you can also use the limited express train from there which takes just an hour).
 
From Otsuki station (Fujikyuko line/local) it takes 45 minutes to Kawaguchiko station. Tokyo-Otsuki:1,490JPY, Otsuki-Kawaguchiko:1,140JPY. Transferring train at Shinjuku, limited express Shinjuku-Otsuki. Train name is Tokkyu Kaiji (limited express). Reserved seat is extra fee for 1,650JPY.
 
From Otsuki station to Kawauchico, you can use limited express. Train name is Fujisan View Tokkyu (limited express). It’s 45 mintutes from Otsuki to the enterance of Mount Fuji, Kawaguchiko station. Weekdays 2 trains operate(round trip) and on weekends/holidays 3 trains operate(round trip). On weekends/holidays train number 5, 9 going to Kawaguchiko and number train number 8, 12 going back to Tokyo, you can enjoy“Fujisan View Limited Express Special Sweet”.
 
The pastry chef from Fujiku Highland Official Hotel actually makes the sweets that are served on the train. (Need reservation 3days before your riding day). 4,000JPY/Adult 3,000JPY/Child (Limited express fee and reserved seat fee included). Reservation Office is Fujikyu Travel.
 
◼️What you will be needing to ride the train.
Train tickets or Reserved tickets.
 
◼️How to buy reserved tickets
1month before your riding day (Start from 10:00 in the morning)
Fujikyuko line/Ticket office – Tsuru-Bunka-Daigakumae station, Fujisan station and Kawaguchiko station (Open 8:30-20:00). Fujikyuko line/Ticket office – Fujikyu-Highland station (Open weekdays 8:30-17:00 weekends 8:30-17:30). Any station that has a ticket office(Midori-no-Madoguchi and View Plaza) in JR EastJapan, and travel company.
 
② From Tokyo to Fujinomiya station
You need to transfer several time and depend on the time you ride you sometime have to transfer more than 3 times. This route is not suitable for your first time. For people who have a JR pass is more preferred. But it is better to check with the staff in the station before you ride.

Local train (Approx.2,590JPY 3hours). From Tokyo station take JR Tokaido line to Fuji station. And transfer to Minobu line and get off at Fujinomiya station. Taking a bullet train half way (Approx. 5,040JPY 2hours). Take Tokaido bullet train “Kodama” from Tokyo to Mishima.
 
And then transfer the train to a local train of JR Tokaido line and get off at Fuji station. Again, transfer to Minobu line and it will bring you to Fujinomiya station.
 
③ From Tokyo to Gotemba station
By JR train,from Tokyo station take Tokaido line(local) and get off at Gotenba station. By Odakyu Romancecar,from Tokyo station to Shinjuku station take JR Chuo line (200JPY) and from Shinjuku there are direct limited express called “Fujisan” which operates twice a day(round trip).
 
All the seats are reserved seats and need addition limited express fee. Train ticket is 1,280JPY and Limited express ticket is 1,530JPY.
*The train ticket (area Matsuda to Gotemba) is normally 1,280JPY but in the busy season the fee rises another 200JPY but on the off season it gets 200JPY cheaper. For more information please contact the staff in Odakyu line.
 
④ From Tokyo to Fujisan station
Take JR Chuo line from Tokyo station to Shinjuku, and then transfer to Otsuki station which will cost you 930JPY for the limited express (non reserved). From Otsuki station 2 or 3 trains are operated every hour that goes to Fujisan station (Fujikyuko line) There is also a limited express train called “Kaiji” that goes to Otsuki. Its extra 300JPY for non reserved seats but you can upgrade it to a reserved seat by only adding 100JPY. You can pay your train ticket with your SUICA but if you do you have to give your limited express ticket to the staff
 
 

By Bus

 
①From Tokyo to Kawaguchiko station
All the seats are reserved seats (Fujikyuko bus). Purchase the ticket at the ticket office before you ride the bus.
You will be needing to purchase another ticket if you lose it so please be careful. There are 2 bus stop in Tokyo station that leaves for Kawaguchiko station.“Yaesu South Exit(before noon/operates twice every hour)” and “Yaesu North Exit, TEKKO building (afternoon/operates once every hour)”.
 
Please check which bus stop it departures when you purchase your ticket. 1 and a half hour/one way is 1,800JPY/Adult(15 years old-). 900JPY/Chhild(-15 years old).
 
②Tokyo to Fujinomiya station
Since there is no transit we recommend you to ride the bus. However, the bus may get late according to the traffic jam so earlier is better. All the seats are reserved seats/highway bus (In some occasion, even though you have not made any reservation, you can still ride the bus as long as they have empty seats. Fujikyuko bus operates the highway bus. 9 bus operates everyday from Tokyo to Fujinomiya.
 
It takes about 2.5 hours and costs 2,570 one way/Adult (4,840JPY round trip). You may purchase the ticket 1 month earlier than your riding day. Child fee is half the price of an adult(except when using *Heijitsu Tokuda Ticket). Only cash is accepted when purchasing tickets on the bus.
*You may use Heijitsu Tokuda Ticket from Fuji bus Highway to Tokyo line riding “Kaguyahime Express” which is available only on weekends. Since it has two tickets, one person may use it as a round trip or 2 people can use it as a one-way ticket. From Tokyo to Fuji city it is 3,500JPY roundtrip.
 
③From Tokyo to Gotemba station
You can purchase the ticket at JR Bus Kanto Tokyo Station Yaesu South Exit Express Bus Ticket Office. Not may bus are operated so it can be very crowded since the bus comes directly from Hakone. So you should think carefully when you buy your ticket for roundtrip. It takes about 1.5 hour to get to the destination. 6 bus are operated everyday. Please check the timetable at the website here. One way 1,680JPY/Adult 840JPY/Child.
 
From Tokyo take JR Chuo line to Shinjuku station (about 200JPY) and transfer to a bus. All the seats are reserved seats but as long as their vacancy you may buy it directly on the bus. The bus ride is about 2hours. One way 1,650JPY/Adult 830JPY/Child. Many bus are operated everyday, but it can be very crowded since the bus comes directly from Hankkone. So you should think carefully when you buy your ticket for roundtrip. For more information about the timetable please check the website below.

Shinjuku→Gotemba
Gotemba→Shinjuku

You can purchase the ticket at Shinjuku Express Bus Terminal (Basta Shinjuku) 4th floor (bus departures here as well) or Odakyu Travel Center / Shinjuku South Exit (foreign language available) →WEBSITE

 

④From Tokyo to Fujisan station
Fujikyuko bus operates and all the seats are reserved seates. You must purchase the ticket before riding the bus.
There are 2 bus stop in Tokyo station that leaves for Kawaguchiko station.“Yaesu South Exit(before noon/operates twice every hour)” and “Yaesu North Exit, TEKKO building (afternoon/operates once every hour)”. Please check which bus stop it departures when you purchase your ticket. Some bus in the afternoon sometimes do not stop and pass through so make sure with the staff whether it will stop. It will take about 1.2 hours to get to the destination.
One way is 1800JPY/Adult(above 15 years old) 900JPY/Child(below 15 years old).

 

3. Mt.Fuji and Fuji Five Lakes Area list

Lake Ymanakako and Oshino

Lake Ymanakako and Oshino

 

Lake Shoji

Lake Shoji

 

Lake Saiko

lake saiko

 

Lake Motosu

Lake Motosu

 

Lake Kawaguchiko and Fujiyoshida

Lake Kawaguchiko and Fujiyoshida

 

Fuji City – Fujinomiya

Fuji City – Fujinomiya

 

Gotemba – Susono

Gotemba – Susono