Wednesday/ bus tour to Kanagawa 🌋

Here are pictures of our round trip bus tour to Mount Hakone and Lake Ashi in Kanagawa prefecture.

We left from Shinjuku Station in Tokyo.
The bus ride to Motohakone Port at the edge of Ashinoko Lake (called ‘Lake Ashi’ for tourists) was about 2 hours.
Here’s our luxury tour bus, parked at Gotemba Outlet Mall.
The Hiratsuka toll gate on the Odawara-Atsugi toll road in Kanagawa prefecture.
Driving up on the winding road to get to the caldera on Mount Hakone.
*A caldera is a large depression formed when a volcano erupts and collapses.
The torii* at the mountainous town of Hakone. Hakone is known for its hot springs resorts (onsen) and views of the iconic volcano Mount Fuji.
*Traditional Japanese gate most commonly found at the entrance of or within a Shinto shrine, where it symbolically marks the transition from the mundane to the sacred.
From the bus we headed straight for the ‘pirate ship’ that took us across Ashinoko Lake to the bottom of the cable car way.
On the short (15 mins) cruise across Ashinoko Lake (mean depth 15m/ 49 ft).
The elusive Mount Fuji peak can be seen behind the clouds. Mount Fuji is Japan’s tallest at 3 776 m (12,388 ft).
On the cable way called the Hakone Ropeway that took us to the village of Owakudami on the Mount Hakone caldera.
A view of the inside slopes of Mount Hakone at Owakudani.  There are pure sulfur deposits in the soil (the yellow color on the slopes). The air is heavy with hydrogen sulfide here: the smell of rotten eggs. On the far right edge of the picture, wisps of steam and gas can be seen escaping from the soil.
The Hakone caldera encompasses a much larger area than just that of the lake itself.
The village is famous for its black eggs. We were scaredy-cats and did not try one. I’m blaming our reluctance to try the eggs on the pervasive rotten egg smell in the air.

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