Hi, it’s been a long time since I write. I also post less on my instagram too recently. I’ll try to keep up with the post frequency, please bear with me. Last month, it was the peak of sakura season and I think it might be the best for me to write about it. I went to Oshino Hakkai and Chureito Pagoda close to Mt. Fuji last year. Their sakura is one of the must-seen spot, especially if you’re visiting or spending a night around Mt. Fuji
About Oshino Hakkai
Mt. Fuji is a famous tourist spot so I’m pretty sure there are a lot of travel sites or blog that explains how to reach there. Oshino Hakkai is around 45 minutes drive from FujiQ or Fuji Station. I went there early in the morning and took a direct bus from Shinjuku Station to Oshino Hakkai. The journey cost me around 2500¥ and 3 hours one way.
Just like its name, Oshino Hakkai (忍野八海) is a small village between Lake Yamanakako and Lake Kawaguchiko. There are 8 ponds inside, and the water on the ponds come from the melting snow from the top of Mt. Fuji. That’s why, the water is really clear.
You can find several restaurant or food stall inside or around the village. If you’re visiting Mt. Fuji, I suggest you to try Houtou, which is a popular regional food from Yamanashi area. It is made by stewing don noodles and vegetables in miso soup.
About Chureito Pagoda
Chureito Pagoda is located at the opposite direction from Oshino Hakkai. From Oshino Hakkai, I took a local Fuji Sight-seeing bus to Fujisan station. From there, I took a train to Shimo-yoshida station. Once you arrived at Shimo-yoshida station, the pagoda is around 15 mins walk. If you have the Fuji heritage loop bus, there is a bus stop close to the trail.
This 5-story-pagoda is located on hilltop overlooking Mt Fuji and Fujiyoshida city. The view, especially during the peak of Spring / Autumn is magnificent. As I mentioned, it’s on a hill-top, you’ll need to hike a bit to reach the pagoda. The pagoda is a part of Arakura Sengen shrine. Once you reach the top, I promise it’s really beautiful and worth the hike.
Near the pagoda, there’s a park with a lot of sakura trees. You can spend 1-2 hours around park, have a picnic and so on.
Please note that both Oshino Hakkai and Chureito Pagoda are famous spots. You might want to avoid to go there during the weekend or national holiday to avoid the crowd. Also, I suggest you to come early as possible (especially if you spend a night around Mt. Fuji) . It’s possible to do both places if you don’t want to spent a day around Mt. Fuji. For me, I left Shinjuku at 8AM in the morning and I went back to Tokyo from Fujisan station with bus around 5PM.
I’d totally recommend this place to you. I went to Fujisan several times with first-time tourist and normally what they want to see is the lake (Kawaguchiko) or Iyashi no Sato. Those places are pretty but you might also want to consider both of Oshino Hakkai and Chureito Pagoda.
The minus about those places? Both of Oshino Hakkai and Chureito Pagoda are also famous tourist spot. During the peak season (Spring/Autumn), those places will full of people and it might be hard to take a photos / selfie. Also the Fuji Heritage loop bus does not stop often at Oshino Hakkai Iriguchi (maybe only 1 bus every 1 or 2 hours). That’s why you need to plan your itinerary well.
That’s my story and see you in the next post! Your comments are always appreciated 🙂