Fuji Five Lakes (Fujigoko)
Whether or not visitors to the Fuji area plan to climb the mountain itself, the Fuji Five Lakes (Fuji Go Ko in Japanese) area is a pleasant place to spend a day or two. Lake Yamanaka is the largest lake, but Kawaguchi is the most developed, with many hotels along its shores. The lakes area is fun for travelers with a range of interests, with hiking, camping, and boating, as well as cultural attractions and one of the most popular amusement parks in Japan, Fuji-Q Highland. Travelers often visit on an overnight trip from Tokyo, although it can also be enjoyed on a day trip too as it’s just a couple of hours away.
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Things to know before you go
- The lakes sit at an elevation of around 3,200 feet (1,000 meters), so temperatures can be cooler than Tokyo, at sea level.
- Mount Fuji normally hides from view in the humid warmer months. To see the mountains, stay overnight and wake early to see it in the clear early morning air.
- If Fuji-Q Highland is high on the agenda, organized tours that focus on the park can be arranged from Tokyo.
How to get there
For a day trip, the best way to get to the Fuji Five Lakes from Tokyo is on a guided tour, as you won’t waste time finding transport. For longer independent trips, there are many train and bus connections from the Tokyo area to Kawaguchiko and Fujisan stations (among others). Tourist services leave from Shinjuku, Tokyo, and Shibuya stations in central Tokyo, plus there are numerous local services.
When to get there
As the lakes area is at altitude, it can be a nice place to head in the summer for cooler temperatures. The spring, summer, and autumn are also the best times to enjoy outdoor activities like camping and hiking. The winter is cold at the lakes, but this can be a good time to get clear and impressive views of Mount Fuji, as well as to enjoy hot spring onsen baths.
Climbing Mount Fuji
Mount Fuji is one of Japan’s most iconic sights, and it can be climbed from early July to mid-September. It’s moderately challenging but requires no technical skills. On clear days, the views from the top spread for many miles across Honshu. Fuji is an extremely popular destination for Japanese tourists and is definitely not a wilderness experience.
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- Aokigahara Forest
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- Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park
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