Sunday, we woke up to rain...drizzly, cold rain.
We took the Romancecar from Shinjuku to Hakone-Yumoto and then transferred to the Hakone Tozan Train.
The tozan train is a switch-back type, it takes awhile to get from Hakone Yumoto to Gora. (Tozan means to "climb the mountain", by the way, Gezan means to "come down the mountain")
The hydrangeas were just starting to bloom along the route.
From Gora, we again transferred to the Hakone Tozan Cablecar to get to Sounzan.
This cablecar was kinda like those finicular types which ascend/descend at an angle.
At Sounzan, we again transferred to the Hakone Ropeway which would take us to Togendai-ko.
It is along this route that we saw this.
Talk about scary! Gondolas coming out of the fog from the opposite direction...
At Togendai-ko, we again transferred to the Hakone Sightseeing Cruise....
Obviously with all that fog, there was nothing to see, so we kept ourselves entertained chatting and playing with the trompe l'oeil(trick art) that they had on board.
Since the fog was unpredictable the cruise schedule was iffy, so we nixed exploring the other two ports and returned back to Togendai-ko and had lunch at their View Restaurant.
This is what the view should have looked like.
After lunch the rain stopped but there was some fog lingering.
We headed back up to Owakudani. There are many sulfur pits here and I think the water that comes from their drilling is what the onsen (hot springs) in the area use.
You can buy 5 black eggs if you wish, it is basically a hard boiled egg that turns black when boiled in the sulfuric waters.
If you eat one, it is said to add 7 years to your life. The bummer part though is that you need to buy 5, too bad we weren't travelling with a larger group.
Instead we shared black soft serve. Vanilla soft serve made black with some edible bamboo charcoal.
We then headed back down to Ubako to check-in at the Green Plaza Hakone.
Our room was located in a prime part of the hotel and we were "supposed" to be able to see Mt Fuji from it.
But of course, it was clouded over.
A bit discouraged, we decided to take a bath in their rotenburo (open air bath) and then go to dinner.
(click on their website and you'll see what the view is supposed to be like from the open air bath).
Oh, a nice perk in the women's open air bath is the tiny cups of sake to drink while in the bath while viewing Mt Fuji. It isn't served on the men's side...as Satoshi said, "probably because the guys would go crazy with free sake..."
Dinner was a fabulous array of things, check out my photos on Flickr, tagged "green plaza" to see what we had.
I was intrigued with their toothpick holder. When you slide open the lid, the container of toothpicks pops up.
The woodwork on the holder is called Yosegizaiku, a type of parquetry in this area, you can read more about it if you are interested, here.
After dinner, we checked on Mt Fuji once again...she finally decided to show herself, even if it was after the sun had set...it was better late than never...
Green Plaza Hakone
1244-2 Sengokuhara Hakone-machi
Reservation Center: Tel.81-03-5272-3111