Mt Fuji Japan’s biggest mountain and active volcano is visible even in Tokyo more than 80 km away. You can get close to the mountain and amazing surrounding landscape in just a few hours. On this trip we also visit the many natural hot springs and lakes of Hakone and coastline of Izu Peninsula.
Start at our Tomisato office near Narita Airport. If arriving late at the office you can stay at campgrounds close by or free roadside rest area.
But if you cannot wait to see Mt Fuji up close it is a 3 hour drive to the Five Lakes area. This guide is based on an adventure spending your first night in Chiba.
Drive along Tokyo Bay and past Mt Nokogiri famous for its cable way and ancient Buddhist shrine. From the top you can see Tokyo Bay and Mt Fuji. Cross Tokyo Bay using either the Aqua Line or Tokyo-Wan Ferry to Kanagawa and Sagami Bay coast surf beaches.
Visit Enoshima, an island dedicated to Benzaiten, the goddess of music and entertainment. Finish the day eating fresh seafood and soaking in hot spring bath in the Hakone district.
Hakone is a small city along the shores of Lake Ashi and is a popular get away for Tokyo residents. There are several rope and cable way including Hakone Komagatake Ropeway, which goes to the top of Mount Komagatake with views of volcanically active Owakudani geysers and Mt Fuji. There are boat trips around the lake and at the end of big day return to a hot spring bath house in the area.
Drive along the Izu Peninsula coast to Shimoda. Famous for being the place during the 19th century United States of America “Kuro Fune” Black Ships entered Japan and demanded a trade treaty with the Empire of Japan. There is replica of US Naval Officer Perry’s ship in Shimoda Harbour.
Spend a day at beautiful white sandy beaches, Shirahama or hiking along mountain rivers and the seven water falls in Kawazu.
Follow the scenic coastline of western Izu and Dogashima. Ancient volcanic lava flows have formed into cliffs, islands and coves where locals live in small fishing villages.
Keep driving north as Mt Fuji looms ahead and to the famous Fuji 5 lakes area. Stop by the shores of Lake Kawakuchi-ko, Sai-ko and Mototsu-ko. All providing amazing views of Mt Fuji. The most famous view is at Lake Mototsu and is the same as seen on a 1000 Yen note.
Depending on the time of year it possible to drive up the Mt Fuji Subaru Line to the 5th Station (Closed to private vehicles during peak climbing season and heavy snow). The 5th Station is 2,300 Meters high and the starting point to climbing to the peak.
Finish the day at one of the many excellent restaurants serving local home made Miso, Udon and bathing in Onsen (Hot Spring Bath).
Finish exploring the Mt Fuji area and head back on the motorway towards Tokyo. If you leave early you can stop by places such as Tokyo Tower or Odaiba and take in the city sights before going back our office in Narita.
Mt Fuji, Hakone and Izu Hanto have many camping options, parking lots are very busy during summer months and you will have to pay to stay. But during off season it is relaxed and you can park for free. There are Michi no Eki (Parking Stations) which offer free overnight parking and toilet facility. Bathing can be done at the many Onsen ( Hot Spring Bath ) in the region.
For full featured camping there are Kyanpu-jo (campgrounds) that provide 100 volt AC power, children play area, bathroom, shower and laundry. Here are our recommendations corresponding to the numbered icons on the Map: