Back to the futon at a Japanese guesthouse – Hakone


imageWe’re not in Tokyo anymore….The Fuji Hakone Guesthouse is in a lovely secluded spot in dense woods on the side of a mountain in the hot springs resort area of Hakone, about a 2.5 hour trip from the frenetic Tokyo Station this morning, by various forms of public transportation including a subway, train and bus.

HAkone gora gardens

Hakone Gora gardens

Now if I could just find a comfortable place to sit. Our room is traditional Japanese-style with two futons on tatami mats and a low wood table with pillows as seats. So I’ve doubled up the pillows and wedged myself against the wall for back support. Our sliding wood and paper screen window is open to a view of the woods and a mountain in the distance. We can hear wind or is it rushing water? And birds, frogs and crickets. (I’m guessing here.)

image I’ve had onsen bath #1 – the small private indoor bath.  Dirck and I booked the private outdoor bath fo,a half hour this evening. ( When in Rome…) I’ve never taken so many baths in my life and have grown to look forward to them after long days as a tourist trudging around in the heat and sometimes rain. The small bath here was very hot and the water was cloudy, I’m assuming with sulfur but it didn’t smell bad.

imageWe went to a small Japanese restaurant nearby for a bowl of udon with tofu for me and soba and tempura for Dirck. Then we took the cable car. Unfortunately the ropeway (which we are guessing is a chairlift or gondola )  was closed but will be open tomorrow. We’ll  take the area’s famous narrow gauge train part of the way home back to Tokyo on Saturday.

imageI am glad we opted to get the Hakone free pass at Shinjuko station in Tokyo which covers all our transportation to and from Tokyo and while we are here. It’s great not to have to pay for all the bits and bobs of public transportation we are using.

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