12 Days of Japan Travels: Mount Fuji, Lake Kawaguchi, Sanrokuen and Fujizakura Inn Reviews Day 3!


View of Mount Fuji with Lake Kawaguchiko in between

On day 3 of our Japan Travels, we finally got a chance to visit Mount Fuji! During this visit, we also visited the scenic Lake Kawaguchi, the famous self-BBQ restaurant – Sanrokuen(山麓園) and views of Mount Fuji from our own room at Fujizakura Inn!

How to get from Tokyo to Mount Fuji – Japan Travels Day 3

To get from Tokyo to Mount Fuji, we took a bus from Tokyo Train Station to Kawaguchiko Train Station in the vicinity of Mount Fuji. The ticket costs about $30 for a one-way ticket per person and the journey takes about 2 hours. There are 2 main stations that you can take from – Shibuya and Tokyo. Kate chose Tokyo station because orientation seemed to be easier. That’s what she thinks…The challenge? Getting to the bus stop at Tokyo Train Station for the departure at 7:40am! :O

JR Expressway Bus at Tokyo Train Station
JR Expressway Bus at Tokyo Train Station

After arriving at Tokyo Train Station, we knew that we had to head towards Yaesu South. We followed the sign and started our “journey”. For the start of this walk, we were still able to see signs with “Yaesu South” written. Suddenly, at an underground mall, we lost the direction! There was only signs for “Yaesu Central”. As there were not many people around, we asked an uncle who was doing cleaning in the mall. Thankfully, he was helpful (as with most Japanese). He pointed in the direction where the sign said “Yaesu Central” in the underground mall and we continued our walk. Soon, the sign “Yaesu South” came back and we finally exited the “underground labyrinth”. The entire walk took about 10 minutes. So do cater time for this walk through the underground mall at Tokyo Station.

JR Express Bus from Tokyo to Mount Fuji
JR Express Bus from Tokyo to Mount Fuji
Bus Bay 8 for JR Express Bus from Tokyo to Mount Fuji Kawaguchiko Station
Bus Bay 8 for JR Express Bus from Tokyo to Mount Fuji Kawaguchiko Station

There’s a JR counter when you arrive at Yaesu exit. That was where we headed to confirm the bus bay for our departure from Tokyo to Mount Fuji. Once we identified that it was Bus Bay 8, we went to Baru Rice (next to Bus Bay 8) to get a mixed rice ball (饭团) for 200 yen and a coffee for 100 yen…

Baru Rice Tokyo Station - where we got our breakfast
Baru Rice Tokyo Station – where we got our breakfast
Baru mixed rice ball and Coffee
Baru mixed rice ball and Coffee

The bus departed promptly at 7:40 am and soon we arrived at 9:40am, 7 minutes before the scheduled time. Perfect timing as always with Japanese public transport – clockwork. (Note: No toilet onboard. Make sure you make a visit before your board!). Just before the stop at Kawaguchiko station, the bus stopped at Mount Fuji Amusement Park where we overheard a little girl say,”终于可以到小丸子的家了!” (Translated as: We can finally visit Chibi Maruko-chan’s home!). 🙂

Mount Fuji Amusement Park as seen from Fujizakura Inn
Mount Fuji Amusement Park as seen from Fujizakura Inn
Kawaguchiko Train Station Mount Fuji in Background
Kawaguchiko Train Station Mount Fuji in Background

At Kawaguchiko Station, you’ll be able to have a meal or do some souvenir shopping. That’s where we got our magnet and cute Mount Fuji biscuits.

View of Mount Fuji with vintage train at Kawaguchiko Station
View of Mount Fuji with vintage train at Kawaguchiko Station

Things to do at Mount Fuji Area

We would be staying for 3 days (2 nights) at the Mount Fuji/Lake Kawaguchiko area. For our first night, we stayed at Fujizakura Inn. That was where we headed after arriving at Kawaguchiko Station – to drop off our luggage. Check-in at most Japan hotels and inns are at 3pm. Hence, we had about 5 hours before check-in. The walk from Kawaguchiko Station to Fujizakura Inn is about 15 minutes…

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Enroute, you’ll pass by Sanrokuen (山麓園) – a self-BBQ restaurant over hot burning coals. While dropping off our luggage at Fujizakura Inn, we also booked our transfer back to Kawaguchiko Station the next morning. As we left the hotel, a staff came along and offered to drive us to where we were headed to. Sanrokuen – that was where we headed to for lunch. We arrived at 1045am and it was just a short wait before the doors was opened at 1055am.

Where to eat in Mount Fuji Area – Sanrokuen 山麓園 BBQ Restaurant

Sanrokuen (山麓園) Mount Fuji BBQ Restaurant
Sanrokuen (山麓園) Mount Fuji BBQ Restaurant
Sanrokuen (山麓園) Furnace for Hot Charcoal
Sanrokuen (山麓園) Furnace for Hot Charcoal
Sanrokuen (山麓園) Mount Fuji Menu
Sanrokuen (山麓園) Mount Fuji Menu

We wanted to try out Sanrokuen because of the self BBQ over red hot charcoal – a new experience for us altogether.

Inside Sanrokuen BBQ Restaurant Mount Fuji
Inside Sanrokuen BBQ Restaurant Mount Fuji
BBQ over charcoal at Sanrokuen
BBQ over charcoal at Sanrokuen

This time, we had the Fuji (富士) set (4000 yen) and the Hida (飛騨) set (2000 yen).

Fuji (富士) set (4000 yen) Sanrokuen Mount Fuji
Fuji (富士) set (4000 yen) Sanrokuen Mount Fuji

The Fuji (富士) set consists of
Char
Beef
Boar
Shrimp
Duck
Vegetables
Quail or Squid
Green Onion
Scallop w shell
Salad
Jelly Potato and
Japanese Noodles in Miso Soup

Hida (飛騨) set (2000 yen) Sanrokuen Restaurant
Hida (飛騨) set (2000 yen) Sanrokuen Restaurant

The Hida (飛騨) set consists of
Rainbow Trout
Fried Tofu
Vegetables
Corn
Chicken
Jelly Potato
Quail or Squid
Dango (made from cornmeal) and
Japanese Noodles in Miso Soup

Trout and meats at Sanrokuen Restaurant
Trout and meats at Sanrokuen Restaurant
BBQ Shrimp and Trout at Sanrokuen Mount Fuji BBQ Restaurant
BBQ Shrimp and Trout at Sanrokuen Mount Fuji BBQ Restaurant

The big question for dining at Sanrokuen is

Is there a particular way to do your BBQ at Sanrokuen?

The answer is YES!

Right next to where you’re seated, you’ll see a jar of special sauce. For BBQ at Sanrokuen, you’ll first lightly grill your meats (etc.) on both sides, dip into the sauce, then grill again. This is the same process except for ingredients that have been lightly salted such as the trout and prawn. For these, you’ll just have to BBQ right away. Do note that you need to pay special attention to the food over the hot charcoal. Otherwise, you may have a couple of chao ta (burnt) foods…yikes! For the quail especially, use low heat (by placing slightly away from direct heat) over a longer time to get the best results!

We loved the trout, prawn and scallops which were SOOO FRESH and SWEET!

Hoto Noodles Sanrokuen
Hoto Noodles Sanrokuen
Complimentary tea at Sanrokuen Restaurant
Complimentary tea at Sanrokuen Restaurant

The meal ended off with a large pot of Hontou (Hoto) noodles for 2. It is basically hand-made noodles (板面), except a little thicker. As we were about to leave, we noticed that the entire restaurant WAS FULL! An indication of how popular Sanrokuen is at the Mount Fuji area! A full meal – both in our tummies and spirits! After this hearty meal, we were ready to check out the views of Mount Fuji!

Walking around Lake Kawaguchiko for views of Mount Fuji

Initially, Kate wanted to just cross the Kawaguchi-machi new bridge for a view of Mount Fuji from across the lake. However, Tom wanted to take a leisurely stroll around the lake. The walk around Lake Kawaguchiko took us about 2 hours and these were some of the views that we enjoyed…

Clouds covering Mount Fuji at first :(
Clouds covering Mount Fuji at first 🙁
View of Mount Fuji from Kawaguchi-machi Bridge
View of Mount Fuji from Kawaguchi-machi Bridge

Speaking of views, there are several ways of capturing Mount Fuji. By itself (meaning no contrast with the land), with land in the fore ground or with lake in the fore ground. At Lake Kawaguchiko, you’ll be able to capture one of those scenic shots of Mount Fuji with a lake in the fore ground via the walking trail around the lake.

Walking trail around Lake Kawaguchiko
Walking trail around Lake Kawaguchiko
View of Mount Fuji with Lake Kawaguchiko in between
View of Mount Fuji with Lake Kawaguchiko in between

During the walk, we also saw some autumn leaves and had some snacks. The green tea ice cream (or ice creams for that matter) around Lake Kawaguchiko ARE BAD/LOUSY/ICY! DO NOT TRY IT! Instead, check out our next post to find out where the best ice cream around Mount Fuji area are…

Autumn leaves around Lake Kawaguchiko
Autumn leaves around Lake Kawaguchiko
Grape flavoured ice cream which was bleh
Grape flavoured ice cream which was bleh
Peach pastry at town around Lake Kawaguchiko (Azagawa)
Peach pastry at town around Lake Kawaguchiko (Azagawa)
Azagawa Town Mount Fuji Area
Azagawa Town Mount Fuji Area

After our 2 hours walk around Lake Kawaguchiko, we headed to Fujizakura Inn to check in!

Fujizakura Inn with views of Mount Fuji
Fujizakura Inn with views of Mount Fuji

One of the highlights of Fujizakura Inn is the unblocked views of Mount Fuji from its carpark. They even have a photo point where Mount Fuji is “properly framed” for a shot!

2bearbear and Mount Fuji at Fujizakura Inn
2bearbear and Mount Fuji at Fujizakura Inn

Next, we checked out our room. Somehow, we were allocated the best room in the house. The top floor, most corner room in Fujizakura Inn with direct views of Mount Fuji!

2bearbear @ Fujizakura Inn Mount Fuji
2bearbear @ Fujizakura Inn Mount Fuji
Yukata at Fujizakura Inn
Yukata at Fujizakura Inn
Bath Tub Fujizakura Inn
Bath Tub Fujizakura Inn
TV and desk in Fujizakura Inn
TV and desk in Fujizakura Inn

By now, we started to notice a trend. All the Japanese hotels that we stayed at had 2 things. Yukata (Japanese Cotton Robes) for guests to slip into and feel comfortable in. Also, a bath tub for those long warm baths and soaks. As the fog started to fade, we were treated to a marvellous view of Mount Fuji. At that, we thanked the Lord for His marvelous creation and for allocating this awesome room to us!

View of Mount Fuji from balcony of Fujizakura Inn
View of Mount Fuji from balcony of Fujizakura Inn

Since we had such a full meal at Sanrokuen during lunch, we decided to have something very Japanese for dinner…

Instant Noodles!

Having instant noodles in Japan!
Having instant noodles in Japan!

At Fujizakura Inn, you’ll be able to get hot water at the lift lobby of each level. Remember to “Unlock” before you dispense the hot water! Since, we’re having instant noodles, we decided to share another cool thing about eat dry noodles. Once the noodles are cooked, you’ll be able to drain completely (and quickly) via these drainage holes!

Drainage holes for dry instant noodles in Japan!
Drainage holes for dry instant noodles in Japan!
Final product of tonkotsu and dry instant noodles!
Final product of tonkotsu and dry instant noodles!

After enjoying the noodles, we decided to turn in early, while watching some Japanese variety shows. Suddenly, we heard some popping sounds outside. As Singaporeans, we immediately recognize those as sounds from fireworks!

Fireworks as seen from Fujizakura Inn
Fireworks as seen from Fujizakura Inn
Fireworks at Mt Fuji area
Fireworks at Mt Fuji area

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What a fantastic start to our Japan travels at Mount Fuji/Lake Kawaguchiko! Stay tuned for more of our travels and views of Mount Fuji in our next post!

Related Post

If you have just completed a post from our 12 days of travels in Japan. Find out more about this trip to Japan in the following posts below.

15 Travel Experiences and Things to do in Tokyo Japan!

Top 9 Things to do in Mount Fuji and Kawaguchiko Area!

Top 5 Things to do in Hida Takayama (高山)!

Top 6 Things to do in Nagoya (and food to eat)!

12 Days of Japan Travels: Tokyo Jimbocho and Imperial Palace Gardens Day 1

12 Days of Japan Travels: Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building Shinjuku Pablo and Shibuya Day 2

12 Days of Japan Travels: Mount Fuji, Lake Kawaguchi, Sanrokuen and Fujizakura Inn Reviews Day 3

12 Days of Japan Travels: Lake Kawaguchiko Natural Living Center & Sightseeing Bus Tour Day 4

Konansou Mount Fuji Hotel Review (湖南庄) : In-Room Onsen and Meals with views of Mount Fuji!

12 Days of Japan Travels: Lake Saiko Wind Cave, Ide Brewery Mount Fuji and Bus Ride to Takayama Day 5

12 Days of Japan Travels: Takayama Morning Markets Jinya-Mae, Miyagawa and Takayama Hidagyu Day 6

12 Days of Japan Travels: Takayama Hidagyu (Hida Beef) and Bus Ride to Nagoya Day 7

Takayama Hidagyu Beef: All You Need To Know!

12 Days of Japan Travels: Eating our way through Nagoya Day 8

12 Days of Japan Travels: Visit Nagoya Castle and Overnight Bus Ride from Nagoya to Tokyo Day 9

12 Days of Japan Travels: Ichiran Ramen & Kamiya Pub Reviews Day 10

12 days of Japan Travels: Tsukiji Fish Market, Ippudo Ramen & Akihabara Tokyo Day 11

12 days of Japan Travels: Ueno Zoo, Ameyoko Shopping Street & Giga Butadon Day 12

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Things to do in Chiayi Taiwan Trip Day 3
Xian Qiang Fang Restaurant (鲜墙房) : Shanghai Cuisine with Chinese Opera!
Sushi Express : Get your cheap sushi fix right here!

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