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07/13/2016

Golden Week Finale

Golden Week Finale
 
Hakone is a beautiful area located in Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park. Famous for the hot springs, ryokans (traditional Japanese inn), and Hakone shrine. Hakone is an extremely popular destination for both Japanese and tourists, and was my favorite location outside of Tokyo this entire trip. Unfortunately, we did not have the time to experience most of the things Hakone has to offer, but still enjoyed our time nonetheless.
 
 
 
My mom and I planned the route early, and started off the day strong with some Doutor coffee. Afterwards, we boarded the first train, and mistakenly thought we could sit in the reserved section. We even took a high class selfie in said section. However, after awhile, a young Japanese attendant notified us that we did not have a green pass (reserved ticket), and politely asked us to gtfo. After coming back down to the regular car, we soon arrived at our destination.
 
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The next part was a bit tricky. I had to use my Japanese language ability, or rather try to, to figure out which bus route would take us to our points of interest in Hakone. We decided to head to the shrine, located in a dense forest next to Lake Ashi. Before trekking over to the shrine, we stopped in to a quaint little restaurant next to the lake. We enjoyed some more coffee, and some delicious pizza. By the time we got out, the weather had taken a turn. A beautiful storm was approaching, which created a fog like I have never seen before.
 
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Part of the shrine was still visible from the lake, so we made our way over, and walked through the torii gates. We saw some absolutely beautiful things, and honestly my words can't really do it justice. My favorite moment, possibly of my entire experience here in Japan, was when my mom and I walked on a narrow trail in the forest. I looked up and just stood there, watching the fog move gracefully through the unbelievably tall trees. I have never been somewhere so serene, somewhere where I felt completely at ease.
 
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Anyways, after we walked through the entirety of the shrine, and after I ate my ice cream in the super cold weather, we made our way back to the bus. I really want to visit Hakone again before I go home. We barely scratched the surface of all that Hakone has to offer.
 
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That's it for the Golden Week posts! The rest of my posts will be kind of random, just some places and things I saw up until now. 19 days left! Final posts of the trip will be on my personal blog: galacticfoxesinjapan.com
 
See You Space Cowboy.
 

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