Izu Geopark Tip:
Although Asahi Falls, located about three kilometers southwest of Shuzenji Station, is one of the highest falls in Shizuoka Prefecture, it has never been the popular place for tourists until it was recently designated as one of the Izu Geopark sites. The falls are six-tiered and about 105 meters tall. The reason why the falls are selected as the geo-site is black honeycomb shaped lava rock formation the water has been gushing through. According to the Geopark guides, the waterfall happens to run through the former volcanic neck resulted from the activities of underwater volcano, active about millions of years ago. When the hot magma cools off it shrinks and makes some cracks vertically. The water passes through the cracks and forms what Geologists call columnar joints, pencil-like lava rock formation often seen around the volcanoes. In most cases you can see columnar joints shaped like amphitheater organ or hexagonal pillars. In Asahi falls you can see the haxagonal pillars right from the top and slanted.
- National/State Park
Gotemba, the town between Mount Fuji and Hakone
Gotemba is the city (population 89,000) located between Mount Fuji and Hakone Volcano. It is also known as one of the starts of climbing Mount Fuji. The most popular attraction of Gotemba is undoubtedly Gotemba Premium Outlet. The city also has a number of popular attractions such as Gotemba Kogen Resort Toki-no-Sumika, Komakado Cave, Chichibunomiya Park, and Gotemba Peace Park.
- Family Travel
- Women's Travel
Fuji, at the South Foot of Mount Fuji
Fuji City is one of the municipalities at the south of Mount Fuji. It occupies almost eighth part of Mount Fuji Area. Although the city has no sites for recently approved UNESCO World Heritage, FUJISAN, it remains one of the pivotal importance for the cultural, commercial and economical presence. The city boasts some of the great viewpoints for Mount Fuji such as Iwamotoyama Park, Hiromi Park and Kariganezutsumi Park. And Shinkansen(Bullet Train Station SHINFUJI is one of the starts for the Mount Fuji climbing.
- Historical Travel
Getting Stamps on a Mount Fuji Walking Stick
One of the traditions of Mount Fuji is to carry a wooden walking stick and have it stamped with a hot metal brand at various stops up the mountain. The sticks are sold at a few places at the base of the mountain, at 5th Station, and at a few of the huts further up the mountain, generally for 1,000 to 1,500 Yen. The stamps themselves can be purchased for 200 Yen per stamp at several of the huts on the way up the mountain, mostly between 6th Station and 8th Station. The walking stick is useful during the climb, and a good memory of your journey.
9th Station to the Summit (Yoshida Trail)
9th Station is marked by a tiny Shinto Shrine, but little else, other than a sign announcing that you are 400 meters from the summit. The rest of the way up the mountain is rocky and steep with little shelter from the elements.
9th Station to the summit rises in elevation from 3,580 meters to 3,776 meters, over a trail just 400 meters long. This short hike can take 30minutes to an hour for most hikers, due to the extremely high elevation and the difficulty of the trail.
Original 8th to 9th Station (Yoshida Trail)
Original 8th to 9th Station you will pass 8.5 Station. It seems like they kept adding stops here, perhaps to offer breaks for hikers, and make it easier to mark your progress. Ultimately, it just gets frustrating, since the 9th Stations seems to never arrive!
Original 8th Station to 9th Station has a change in elevation from 3,360 meters to 3,580 meters, and it covers just 800 meters of trail, but and it gets you just 400 meters from the peak. This stretch of trail takes about an hour.
8th to Original 8th Station (Yoshida Trail)
The hike from 8th Station to the Original 8th Station starts to get tough. There are still lots of huts and break areas, but the thin air can make it hard to breathe. The trail continues to be mostly rocks and steps, almost entirely straight up toward the summit.
This section of the trail rises in elevation from 3,040 meters to 3,360 meters over a 1.1 km trail, and takes about 1 hour and 20 minutes for most hikers.
7th to 8th Station (Yoshida Trail)
The hike from 7th to 8th Station is perhaps the most interesting and fun part of the mountain. Here, the trail narrows and hikers have to scramble over steep rocky trails, often using poles, chains, and ropes to stabilize themselves. This section of the trails is also lined with 10 or so mountain huts where you can use the restroom (200 Yen!), get some ramen (400-500 Yen), get stamps for your hiking stick (300 Yen), or sleep.
This section of the trail rises in elevation from 2,700 meters to 3,040 meters over a 1.5 km trail, and takes about two and a half hours for most hikers.
5th to 6th Station (Yoshida Trail)
The first section of the Yoshida trail is very easy. For most of the way, this trail is almost entirely level, and it even has some long stretches of slight downhill. It almost feels like you are wasting some time on the level ground rather than starting up the mountain while you are fresh.
The 6th Station is not well marked and there are no huts or lodges, so no stamps for your Fuji hiking stick. The only way to identify the 6th Station is a Mount Fuji Safety Center building staffed with grumpy gentlemen.
This section of the trail rises in elevation from 2,305 meters to 2,390 meters over a 1.5 km trail, and takes about 30 to 45 minutes for most hikers.
6th to 7th Station (Yoshida Trail)
The hike from 6th to 7th Station starts to get steep, but the trail is still wide. Along this stretch of trail, there are numerous switchbacks, so the hike remains pretty easy overall. As you approach the Seventh Station, the trail becomes more rocky with steps in many places.
This section of the trail rises in elevation from 2,390 meters to 2,700 meters over a 1.0 km trail, and takes about 1 hour and 35 minutes for most hikers.
Mount Fuji Subaru Line 5th Station (Yoshida Trail)
The Subaru Line Fifth Station is said to be the most popular Fifth Station on the mountain. At an elevation of 2300 meters above sea level, it is the most easily accessible from Tokyo, whether by car, train/bus, or just by bus. From 10 July to 31 August, the road is closed to private vehicles, but you can park at the lower end of the road and take a shuttle bus. If you drive, the toll is 2060 Yen for the round trip, including parking.
The Subaru Line Fifth Station also has lots of amenities for hikers including shops selling food, hiking supplies, and gifts; a few restaurants; public restrooms; coin lockers; etc. They even offer horse rides that go partway up the mountain.
This station provides easy access to the Yoshida Trail, the most popular hiking trail on Fuji.
Fuji-Q Amusement Park
Fuji-Q, perhaps Fujikyu, is an amusement park near the base of Mount Fuji in the town of Fujiyoshida. Entrance is just 1,400 Yen, or you can get a one-day pass that includes rides for 5,400 Yen per adult. The park has about 25 rides for both adults and children, 15 restaurants, another 15 shops, and a resort hotel with hot springs.
Atami Hot Spa Resort Since Ancient Times
Atami is one of the most popular hot spring resorts in Japan and is the gateway to Izu Peninsula the area with dense hot spa places. Just as other ancient onsen springs in Japan, such as Arima, Beppu, and Dogo, this onsen has been struggling to stay alive. Recently the beach has been restored and named as Atami Sun Beach which has been attracting younger visitors. Kiunkaku former upscale traditional styled ryokan inn was recently reopened as a museum with memories of famous Japanese writers.
To find about this spa city see:
Atami Travel Page
- National/State Park
- Spa and Resort
Mount Fuji as A World Cultural Heritage
Almost one year has passed since Mount Fuji has become one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
The area of a heritage site encompasses not only major sights in and around Mount Fuji such as Fuji Five Lakes, Fuji Hongu Sengen Taisha Shrine in Funinomiya and other sengen shrines, but lesser known places often visited by Fuji-ko pilgrims.
- Arts and Culture
- Historical Travel
Lake Yamanaka lies near the base of Mount Fuji, as one of the Fuji Five Lakes. It is the largest and highest elevation of the five lakes, and the third-highest lake in Japan. The lake is part of Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park.
This large recreation area is very popular in the summer for boating, fishing, swimming, jet skiing, and other water activities. The lake is surrounded by a road, bike path, and numerous small towns and resorts.