Fuji 5 Lakes area: Lake Kawaguchi / Mount Ashiwada / Aokigahara Forest

A couple of weeks ago, I went on a day trip to Fujikawaguchiko, in Yamanashi Prefecture. The area is located on the north side of Mount Fuji, west of Tokyo, and is famous for being a great spot for watching the mountain. It also known under the name “Fuji Five Lakes” (after Lake Kawaguchi, Lake Sai, Lake Shoji, Lake Motosu and Lake Yamanaka). On top of the lakes, the area has mountains and swathes of woodland, the most well-known being Aokigahara Forest, also called the “Sea of trees” (and sometimes “Suicide Forest”).

While I was there, starting from Kawaguchiko station, I walked on the south bank of Lake Kawaguchi for a while, until I reached a mountainous area. I then hiked a forest trail up to the summit of Mount Ashiwada. It was possible to see Mount Fujji along the way. Then, I went down towards Aokigahara Forest, stopping to enjoy the views at Sankodai and Koyodai. In Aokigahara, I walked the well-marked trails and visited the Ice Cave and Wind Cave. Finally, I went to Lake Sai to catch the bus back to the train station.

Above, fishermen on Lake Kawaguchi.

Above, Mount Fuji.

Above, Mount Fuji from the bridge.

Above, the path next to the lake. It goes all the way to Katsuyama Road Station and offers splendid views on the lake, the surrounding mountains and, occasionally, Mount Fuji.

Above, a Peace Pole with the usual message: “May Peace Prevail on Earth”.

Above, Mount Ashiwada.

Above, view of Katsuyama Road Station and Lake Kawaguchi from the trail.

Above, Lake Kawaguchi.

Above, Mount Fuji from the summit of Mount Ashiwada (Gokodai).

Above, Lake Sai.

Above, it did not feel that cold but some ice still formed on the ground.

Above, Sankodai view point.

Above, mountains, with Aokigahara Forest in the foreground.

Above, view of Lake Motosu from Sankodai.

Above, view of Mount Fuji from the Koyodai observatory.

Above, view of Lake Sai from Koyodai.

Above, Aokigahara Forest.

Above, entrance to the Ice Cave.

Above, entrance to the Wind Cave.

Above, Lake Sai.

Above, back at Lake Kawaguchi, watching the last of the sunlight on the mountain.

Above, “See you again” sign on the way to the train station.

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