Attraction Owakudani Station, Sengokuhara,Hakone, Ashigarashimo District, Kanagawa 250-0631, Japan Published on: 25-02-2016
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Why Owakudani Valley is special ?
Ōwakudani (大涌谷 ) is a volcanic valley with active sulphur vents and hot springs in Hakone, Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan. It is a popular tourist site for its scenic views, volcanic activity, and especially, Kuro-tamago a local specialty of eggs hard-boiled in the hot springs. The boiled eggs turn black and smell slightly sulphuric; consuming the eggs is said to increase longevity. Eating one is said to add seven years to your life. You may eat up to two and a half for up to seventeen and a half years, but eating a whole third is said to be highly unadvised.
Today, much of the area is an active volcanic zone where sulfurous fumes, hot springs and hot rivers can be experienced. Additionally, Owakudani has good views of Mount Fuji on clear days.
What to explore at Owakudani Valley?
A short walking trail (about ten minutes one way) leads from the ropeway station into the volcanic zone to a number of steam vents and bubbling pools. Here you can purchase eggs, cooked in the naturally hot water, whose shells are blackened by the sulfur and which are said to prolong one's life by seven years.
For the more adventurous, a hiking trail leads from the ropeway station to the peak of Mount Kamiyama and continues on to Mount Komagatake from where you can catch the Komagatake Ropeway down to Lake Ashi. The hike takes about 2 hours one way and can be rocky or slippery as well as quite windy. Proper hiking shoes and rain gear are recommended.
Alternatively, about 30 minutes past the peak of Mount Kamiyama a trail splits off down towards Lake Ashi. It leads down the mountain and along the lakeshore, ending at Kojiri not far from Togendai, from where the Hakone Ropeway connects back to Owakudani. The round trip takes about 4.5 hours.
How to get to Owakudani Valley?
Owakudani is a station along the Hakone Ropeway between Sounzan and Togendai. Sounzan is accessible from Hakone-Yumoto by Hakone Tozan Railway and cable car with a transfer at Gora Station. Togendai is on the shores of Lake Ashi and is connected by boat with Moto-Hakone and Hakone-machi.
- Awesome Volcanic Landscape
- Volcanic vaporous & black eggs
- Perfect hill station with a volcanic twist
- Great Black Ice Cream and the view of Mt. Fuji
- Great view of hot springs and good eggs
Owakudani Station, Sengokuhara,Hakone, Ashigarashimo District, Kanagawa 250-0631, Japan
Tips for you
We reached the area really early. So happy that we went to the Hakone Ropeway station first, as we could buy 1-day ticket, which bundled Pirate Cruise Ship n Ropeway (cable car ride) that will stop at Owaku-tani station as well. There is a very limited public free parking close the station (less than 2 minutes walk). We took the first ropeway car out, visited Owaku-tani then the cruise. The sequence worked out well as when we were leaving the bubbling area, group of tourists started to pour in ! It would have been very difficult to take photos if the crowds had been there. The famous black egg which has not too long queue also n the turnover seemed very good. It tasted good. There are restaurants n the view while riding the cable car was superb even though we didn't get to see Fuji-san while in the cable car. Fuji-san showed herself when we were on the Pirate Cruise ship. Magnificent, indeed. It is quite rare to see Fuji-san in the afternoon rather than morning hours, apparently. Prepare to spend a whole day there, especially if you have no private transport. Taxi is not easy to find.