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Admiring Mount Fuji from the Hakone Hot Springs: One Owner's Tale

Transport yourself to Japan with this quick read

Kevin O.
Close up of cherry blossoms with Mount Fuji in the distance.

Today I’m taking you on a short trip outside Tokyo to Hakone, Japan. We'll explore onsens (hot springs) and then kick back and relax at Japan's newest place to stay Hilton Grand Vacations' Odawara resort.

Hakone is part of the Fuji Hakone Izu National Park and the area is actually home to seven hot spring towns.

Start your day early and plan to stay at least two days in the Hakone area to truly experience it all.

Traveling to Hakone, Japan

1. Tokyo to Odawara by bullet train

We used the Japan Rail Pass to access speedy “shinkansens” (bullet trains). The Shinkansen Hikari from Tokyo Station to Odawara Station is only 35 minutes.

2. Odawara to Hakone

Upon arriving at the Odawara Station, transfer to the Hakone Tozan Line. These red cable cars will zig-zag across the beautiful mountain scenery to Hakone-Yumoto Station.

When in Hakone

There is a common route that first-time tourists embark upon using the Hakone Free Pass. This counter-clockwise route around Hakone provides you spectacular views of Mount Fuji aboard trains, cable-cars, boats and buses:
  • Hakone-Yumoto
  • Gora
  • Sounzan (Ropeway)
  • Togendai-ko (Boat across Lake Ashi)
  • Odakyu Hotel De Yama / Hakone-machi
From resorts in the area, you can wake up to views like this:
As a New Yorker, I have been spoiled by the city that never sleeps but Hakone locals rest early and live forever. Expect everything closed by 5 p.m.
Seize the day!

Where to Stay While in Japan

If you're lucky enough to reserve a suite at the luxurious Bay Forest Odawara by Hilton Club, it’s only a 17-minute car ride from either Hakone-Yumoto or Odawara Station.
Another option is the HGV-partnered property four minutes from the Gora Station — Tokyu Vacations Hakone Gora.

Give It a Shot

We went in March 2015 before this became all-the-rage on social media but you can bathe in red wine, chocolate, sake and green tea at the Hakone Kowakien Yunessun spa theme park.

Read Build Your Travel Bucket List and Plan Your Next Trip Now to fuel your wanderlust. 

Kevin O.

“I truly believe that the best trips are the ones where you interact with locals, and then reflect on your own life.” Mastermind travel planner and jetsetter, Kevin, aims to visit every continent in the next two years, and move abroad following his around-the-world journey. When Kevin isn’t visiting his home resort in Las Vegas, Hilton Grand Vacations Club on Paradise, he loves to travel the globe with his close friends. Kevin always carries a portable charger and flashlight in his carry-on, and he enjoys making cocktails and coconut smoothies in his HGV kitchen. So far, his preferred HGV property is The Grand Islander by Hilton Grand Vacations Club in Oahu, Hawaii.

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