Perhaps the most famous of the fifty three stations on the old Tokaido Road from Kyoto to Edo, Hakone is most famous for its peaceful lake, steaming hot springs, and above all, for its views of Mount Fuji.
Within easy reach of Tokyo, Hakone is a popular holiday spot, and a number of museums and sights are linked by ropeways, cable-cars and funicular or cliff railways. Lake Ashi marks the centre of a large national park, and the mountains around, as well as old sections of the cobbled Tokaido Road provide excellent walking trails, with Mount Fuji making a memorable backdrop.
Hakone’s Great Boiling Valley is evidence of Japan’s geothermic power, and eggs boiled in the simmering pools are said to promote longevity – by seven years, to be precise. Cooler water is used in hot spring baths at Hakone’s many ryokan inns.