A must-visit hot spring resort town close to Tokyo
Hakone is a picturesque town located in the east of the Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park, and it is considered one of the most popular hot spring towns in japan. This charming destination is just a short distance away from Tokyo, making it an ideal day trip or a relaxing getaway for those seeking to escape the hustle and bustle of the city. With its natural hot springs, stunning mountain and lake views, and a wide range of accommodation options, Hakone offers a perfect blend of relaxation and natural beauty.
How to Get Here
Hakone-Yumoto Station serves as the gateway to Hakone and is easily accessible from Tokyo. There are two main routes to reach Hakone from Tokyo. The first option is to take the Odakyu Line from Shinjuku Station to Hakone-Yumoto Station, which takes approximately 90 minutes. The second option is to take the Tokaido Shinkansen from Tokyo Station to Odawara Station, and then transfer to the Hakone Tozan Line, which takes about 55 minutes.
Hakone’s natural hot springs
Hakone is renowned for its natural hot springs, known as onsen in Japanese. The town is situated in the east of the Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park, which is famous for its volcanic activity and geothermal springs. The hot springs in Hakone offer a variety of therapeutic benefits and are believed to have healing properties due to their mineral-rich waters. Visitors can indulge in the relaxing experience of soaking in the hot springs while enjoying the tranquil surroundings of the town.
Stunning mountain and lake views
In addition to its hot springs, Hakone is also known for its breathtaking mountain and lake views. The town is surrounded by majestic mountains, including Mt. Kamiyama and Mt. Komagatake, which offer stunning panoramic views of the surrounding area. One of the best ways to enjoy these views is by taking a ropeway ride that takes you high above the town, offering a bird’s eye view of the iconic Mt. Fuji. For those who prefer to stay at ground level, Lake Ashinoko is a must-visit destination. This picturesque lake is a popular spot for sightseeing and offers scenic cruises that allow visitors to admire the beauty of the surrounding landscape.
Accommodation options in Hakone
Hakone offers a wide range of accommodation options to suit every budget and preference. From luxury ryokans (traditional Japanese inns) to modern hotels and guesthouses, there is something for everyone in Hakone. Many of the hotels and ryokans in Hakone feature their own hot spring baths, allowing guests to enjoy the therapeutic benefits of the hot springs in the privacy of their own rooms. Additionally, some accommodations offer stunning views of Mt. Fuji or Lake Ashinoko, providing a truly memorable experience for visitors.
Exploring the attractions of Hakone
Aside from its hot springs and natural beauty, Hakone has a lot to offer in terms of attractions and activities. The Hakone Open-Air Museum is a must-visit destination for art lovers, featuring a vast collection of sculptures and artworks displayed in a beautiful outdoor setting. The museum also has its own hot spring foot bath where visitors can relax and soak their feet while enjoying the art.
For those interested in history and culture, the Hakone Sekisho (Checkpoint) is worth a visit. This historic site was once a crucial checkpoint along the Tokaido Highway during the Edo period and provides insights into the region’s history and samurai culture.
Another popular attraction in Hakone is the Hakone Shrine, which is located on the shores of Lake Ashinoko. This picturesque shrine is known for its iconic red torii gate, which stands in the water and offers a stunning view against the backdrop of the lake and mountains.
For nature enthusiasts, a visit to the Owakudani Valley is a must. This volcanic valley is known for its sulfur vents and hot springs, and visitors can take a cable car ride to the valley to witness the unique geological features and enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding landscape.
In addition to these attractions, Hakone also offers various outdoor activities such as hiking, boating, and fishing, allowing visitors to make the most of the region’s natural beauty.
Cuisine in Hakone
No visit to Hakone is complete without indulging in the local cuisine. The town is known for its delicious traditional Japanese dishes, and many restaurants in Hakone specialize in serving fresh seafood, regional specialties, and seasonal ingredients. Some popular dishes to try in Hakone include sushi, sashimi, tempura, and hot pot dishes. Additionally, Hakone is famous for its black eggs, which are boiled in the hot springs and are said to have health benefits.
Hakone is a must-visit destination for those seeking relaxation, natural beauty, and a taste of traditional Japanese culture. With its natural hot springs, stunning mountain and lake views, and a wide range of attractions and activities, Hakone offers a unique and unforgettable experience for visitors. Whether you’re looking for a day trip from Tokyo or planning a longer stay, Hakone is sure to leave you rejuvenated and enchanted with its charm and beauty. So, why not escape the city and immerse yourself in the tranquility and natural splendor of Hakone?
Address And Maps Location:
Hakone-machi, Ashigarashimo-gun, Kanagawa-ken