Lake Yamanaka

Lake Yamanaka
Lake Yamanaka 山中湖

Big Boy restaurant
on the main road
Having bought Fujikyu highway bus tickets 富士急 高速バス 河口湖~横浜線 for 2060 yen from the convenience store (buy at the machine & pay at the cash register), we took the 12:20 pm bus leaving from Yokohama Station West Exit's Bus Stop #22 横浜駅西口22番のりば. After 2 hours and 10 minutes, we arrived at Fuji-Q Highland Bus Station 富士急ハイランド! It was about 5 degrees colder than Tokyo!

There are lots of big chain restaurants on the big main road to the right of the highway bus station - walk left. If you continue walking down the main road and make a right at the pedestrian overpass, you can find signs to Fujiyoshida Sengen Shrine 北口本宮 冨士浅間神社, a beautiful shrine that's also the entrance to one of the Mount Fuji hiking trails. It takes 25 minutes to walk there from the highway bus stop or you can use the bus/train.
Fujiyoshida Sengen Shrine Fujiyoshida Sengen Jinja
Fujiyoshida Sengen Jinja Fujiyoshida Sengen Shrine

FujiQ Highland night
From the highway bus Highland Bus Station, we walked to our hotel, HOTEL MYSTAYS Fuji ホテルマイステイズ富士山, which is a 15 min walk around the amusement park with crazy rides towards Fujikyu-Highland Station 富士急ハイランド駅 following the signs. Go left after the railway crossing and it's on the right hand side.

Since the hotel just opened in December of 2016, everything is super new and very nice! No complaints! There's wifi, microwaves, and coin laundry. You can pay a bit extra for a room facing Mount Fuji and Fuji-Q Highland, which has lit up roller coasters at night.

When the weather is good, you can also see Mount Fuji through the top half of the glass at the rooftop indoor and outdoor public baths - not when you're sitting in the bath though since the bottom 3/4 is matte/darkened glass. Toiletries are provided but extras are available in the lobby & in the ensuite bathroom.

They charge 1800 for breakfast and 4000 for the dinner buffet, cheaper if reserved in advance, but there are a couple of restaurants just 3 minutes on foot. Cross the street to the 2nd road and walk left past the ENEOS gas station. There's a Lawson convenience store, a karaoke, a yakiniku (barbecue) restaurant, an izakaya, a Bamiyan ("Chinese" family restaurant), and a supermarket.
Hotel Mystays Fuji
view from the room
hotel mystays hotsprings
rooftop public bath

Fujikyu Highland time table
train fares

train time table
The same direction (cross the street to the 2nd road once you exit the hotel and walk left) takes you to Fujikyu Highland Station 富士急ハイランド駅. Just make a right at ENEOS gas station. Bus stops to Kawaguchiko 河口湖 (5 minutes) and Yamanakako 山中湖 (35 minutes) and another entrance to the amusement park are right behind on the left side.

Bus to Kawaguchiko.    Time table ↓

Bus to Yamanakako 山中湖.    Time table ↓
金鳥居 near Fujisan Station
If you continue straight past the ENEOS gas station, you can get to Fujisan Station 富士山駅 on foot in under 20 minutes . The bus from Fujikyu Highland Station 富士急ハイランド駅 takes just 5 minutes. There are many buses and highway buses here.
Fujisan Station bus
buses from Fujisan Staiton
Fujisan Station bus routes
bus routes from Fujisan Staiton

Chureito Pagoda winter

walk down this road

local bus route
For HOTEL MYSTAYS Fuji to the iconic photo of Fuji with pagoda, you can take a 10-minute/1000-yen taxi or go by bus/train close to the hotel. We actually walked to Arakurayama Sengen Park 新倉山浅間公園 in under 30 minutes. Walk left once you exit the hotel. Within 10 minutes, you'll pass a 7-11 followed by a Famima. Keep going straight down Ohimezaka-dori until you come to the railway crossing. Turn left uphill just before the crossing. Then follow small signs along the road directing you to Chureito Pagoda 忠霊塔. Turn right at the river and you'll see the entrance on your left before long. Now, you just have 400 steps to the top with Fujisan staring at your behind. It shouldn't take more than 10 minutes to reach the pagoda. Sunset in early January is probably between 4 and 5.
Arakurayama Sengen Park Arakurayama Sengen Park snow
Arakurayama Sengen Park Chureito Pagoda snow

ほうとう noodles at 海馬
Because we've already been to Lake Kawaguchi, we decided to explore Lake Yamanaka 山中湖. It's 35 minutes by bus from Fuji-Q Highland, 2 buses an hour & 600 yen - can use SUICA.

Excellent view of Fuji over the lake. There are a few lake-view restaurants. By the lake is also a cool t-shirt shop where you can choose designs by Japanese artists and have them printed on hoodies, t-shirts, or tote bags of your choosing in 20 minutes. They have a shop at Fujisan Station too.

Nearby is a flower park with seasonal flowers and winter illuminations called Yamanakako Hanano Miyako Koen 山中湖花の都公園 and a hot spring spa where you can see Mount Fuji outdoors called Benifuji no yu 紅富士の湯. There's also a village with 8 ponds called Oshino Hakkai 忍野八海 where you can see Fuji in the backdrop.

From Yamanakako 富士山山中湖 to Tokyo Station 東京駅, it's 2 and 25 minutes & 2100 yen.
cool tshirts yamanakako t-shirts yamanakako lake yamanaka t-shirts
Creator's Pool where you can choose designs by Japanese artists to print on t-shirts, etc.

Lake Yamanakako
winter wonderland
Lake Yamanakako snow
we made these :)
Lake Yamanaka winter