We booked a tour to Mt. Fuji on the second day in Tokyo. Initial, I thought of going there on our own. After doing some research, it seemed too troublesome and not cost effective as we would have to transit here and there. So happened that found a tour that covers most places that I planned to go. That was how I decided to go with the tour from JapanICan. The meeting point of the tour was at Keio Plaza Hotel South Tower and the bus departed for Mt. Fuji at 9AM. Journey to Mt. Fuji was 2.5 hours.
The first destination of the tour was to Mt. Fuji 5th Station and we were given 30 minutes. It was pretty short. If we were given 45 minutes, that would be perfect. Anyway, I love the weather in Mt. Fuji. It was the coldest throughout my entire trip. There were many people preparing to hike but most people looked like they had completed their course. Given only 30 minutes, we went ahead to take photos of Mt. Fuji iconic areas. There was a temple at the back of the souvenir shop. In the temple, they sell a lot of bells of different sizes.
In case hikers feel hungry after hiking, they have stores that sell food like bao and ice cream. We bought a big bao from the store and went ahead to the souvenir store. I bought a set of post cards.
We covered the whole area pretty fast and we were the first few who head back to the bus. There’s probably other places down the street that we didn’t cover. If you are going free and easy, you might want to explore other areas since it’s a long journey there.
30 minutes later, we set off to Fujisanroku, a Japanese Style cuisine, for lunch! Fujisanroku is located at Fuji, Yoshida (30 minutes drive from Mt. Fuji). There’s no need to pay for the meal as it had already been included in the tour package. Seafood and sashimi were being served for the set meal. I didn’t quite like the food because Sashimi was not fresh and the seafood had a weird taste.
We were given an hour at the restaurant but we took only 20 minutes to complete. The rest of the time was used for photo taking. Outside of the restaurant, we could see mountains from far. Front the number of cars passing by, I don’t think there’s a lot of people staying in the area.
The weather at Mt Fuji was about 16 degree and it’s perfect for Onsen. The tour bus brought us to Lake Yamanaka Onsen. We had about an hour for the spa. At the entrance of Lake Yamanaka Onsen, we were required to take off our shoes and locked it in the locker. Please bring along some coins for the locker. If you don’t have it on hand, you can always exchange it at the counter. At Lake Yamanaka Onsen, there are 4 indoor and 2 outdoor hotspring pool. Needless to say, you will have to go naked. There isn’t much view from Lake Yamanaka Onsen. And if you feel hungry after, there’s a cafe outside.
And our last stop, Gotemba Premium Outlets. We were given only 2 hours to shop the whole area which was very rush because the place is really big. If you think 2 hours is insufficient, you can head back to Tokyo without following the tour bus. But please remember to inform the tour guide so that he/she won’t go around looking for you. Gotemba Premium Outlets is one of the largest centres in Tokyo which is separated into east and west. It has over 210 stores, mainly the low/mid range brand. If you are looking for brands that are worth buying, go for Agnes B. It’s close too 70% off Singapore’s retail price. Really a good buy. At Gotemba Premium Outlets, there is a perfect view of Mt. Fuji (if not’s not too misty). When we went, the view wasn’t too good as it was foggy.
It was a 2.5 hours right back to Shinjuku. When we reached Shinjuku, it was about 7:50 PM. Just nice for dinner. We had a headache deciding what to have for dinner because we had no idea what’s nice around the area. After walking a few rounds, we decided on Tokyo Cuisine and Wine. Not so much on Japanese food but fusion. We ordered for sharing. I would say their food are pretty good. For mains, we ordered Carbonara and Beef. They were both good. Sorry, I don’t the names for the other dishes.
After dinner, we had a walk around Shinjuku and I was looking out for convenient store to buy my Biore Wipes. Ladies, it’s really cheap over there compared to Singapore. A refill packet in Singapore is retailing at S$15. In Japan, it’s retailing at only S$6. I bought like 6 packets back because it’s used up very quickly. That’s about it for the second last day of the trip.