We pumped up our knowledge of the GPS, typed in our destination phone number and plugged in the IPod nano and away we went back down the mountain ( nearly got run into on the way down,,,,)and out onto the tollway without any drama other than having to constantly adjust the screen with where we were at as we really didn’t yet trust our young audio guide to instruct us correctly. It took us much longer than anticipated to drive the 400km as the speed limit is 80kph on the tollway and 50 in many places as well. It was also raining all the way but traffic was light for most of the drive and we arrived at The Fuji Five Lakes District in good spirits.
We got a great big Onsen suite on the 8th Floor looking directly at Mt Fuji but all we could see were a few bits through the constant clouds and white outs of rain but tomorrow was going to be a good day as they say. The Onsen outdoor bath was a beauty and had a great view of Mt Fuji so we made great-use of it at every occasion.
We booked a massage as wee needed it after the long drive and the blind therapist was very good. We were fed in our huge room with another massive meal of 15 bits and thought oh dear three days of this and we will explode. we awoke to a magnificent Mt Fuji filling our view far more than we expected, it was huge right in front of us.
It is actually 20kms away to the peak. it was not long however before we lost it in the clouds and the rain started again. we headed off regardless to circumnavigate some lakes and got two done Kawaguchiko and….with a few sights along the way and lots of tour groups trying to get a glimpse of Fujisan through the rain and clouds to no avail,
The blueberry ice-cream at The Herb Studio was great but the Saiko Iyashi no sato Nemba village was a great find with its re-built village houses that had been destroyed in a typhoon in 1964. It is now a local artisan and craft centre and everything is located in the 20 or so houses that were re-built using all authentic building techniques and materials. we purchased some stunning Tye-dye fabric pieces that we will hang at home from a crafts women in one of the huts that she creates onsite. even though it was raining the blossoms, huts and mist made it all the more fascinating
We discovered a great little Italian restaurant along the lakes shore run by this lovely Japanese guy and his dog Candy and the food was sensational as was the eclectic collections he had inside of violins, cameras, speakers and other musical pieces. The food was sensational and the atmosphere eclectic and full of character.
Another day another Lake to try and capture Mt Fuji but to no avail so we went to the Fuji museum and saw some stunning photos and paintings before heading to y Lake where there was still no Fuji view until later in the afternoon when we got back to the Hotel and there it was in all its glory with blue skies all around so we drove over the Lake to capture some great shots and when we got back the clouds came in again and so did the rain but it was magic as the mood changes so quickly around Mt Fuji.
As soon as it was clear was cloudy again and in came the rain in sheets. It looked amazing across the lake watching it come in with the contrasting colours. The last opportunity in the morning to see Fuji was a delight, a stunning cloudless sky and a crystal clear Mt Fuji there in front of us so we packed up and went to find the last two lakes and they didnt disappoint with different vistas of Mt Fuji from every turn. We visited Saiko lake, Yamanaka Lake and Motosuko lake to complete our five lakes
It was a delightful morning cruising around stopping at so many lovely spots along the way before saying our Fuji farewells and heading for Tokyo. We drove to Hachioji along the Chou Highway and were surprised by the beautiful countryside to the where we dropped off the car and got a train to Tokyo