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Tokyo to Hakone: How To Plan A Day Trip From Tokyo

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by GoWithGuide travel specialist:Akane N.

Last updated : Jun 18, 202415 min read

Travel Tips

A day trip from Tokyo to Hakone is one of the most popular itinerary options when visiting Japan. Hakone is just about 1.5 hours away and easy to get to, so it’s very popular among foreign tourists as well as local Japanese tourists. It’s a rural area where there are many hot springs and sightseeing spots surrounded by beautiful natural scenery. It’s especially popular and crowded during the season of cherry blossoms in the spring and the autumn colors.

 

 

Access using the Romance Car 

 

 

Using the train called “Romance Car” on the Odakyu line is the easiest way to get to Hakone. The train starts from Shinjuku station and takes you directly to Hakone Yumoto station. Some trains go beyond Hakone Yumoto so make sure to get off at this station.

 

The train fare for the Romance Car is about 2,300 yen one way (1,190 yen for the train fee plus 1,090 yen as a limited express ticket to board the Romance Car). But there’s another option. Rather than buying tickets for just the train, you can buy a Hakone Freepass. This pass includes one round trip ticket on the Odakyu line and unlimited rides on the Odakyu train and bus network in Hakone. If you’re going to be sightseeing all over Hakone, this is something worth buying. It will save you some money.

 

Hakone Freepass 

The Hakone Freepass is 6,100 yen for adults and 1,100 yen for children (age 6 - 11) for a two day pass. As I said above, it includes unlimited rides on the Odakyu train/bus network in Hakone and a round trip ticket from Tokyo to Hakone on the Odakyu line. However, this covers only the regular train fee, so in order to use the Romance Car to get to Hakone, you also have to buy a limited express ticket. You can check out the full price list for the limited express tickets from the specific stations. 

 

You can use 8 types of train/bus lines in the Hakone area. They are the following; Hakone Tozan Train, Hakone Tozan Cable Car, Hakone Ropeway, Hakone Sightseeing Cruise, Hakone Tozan Bus, Kanko-Shosetsu-Meguri Bus, Odakyu Hakone Highway Bus, Tokai Bus Orange Shuttle. But please be aware that if you ride the bus outside the designated areas, you will be charged for the extra section.

 

More information: The Hakone Free Pass 

 

Hakone Onsen

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Hakone Onsen is a general name for the hot springs in the Hakone area. If you break it down into more specific areas, there are many many more, from the bottom to the middle area of the volcanic mountain of Hakone. For example, Hakone Yumoto Onsen, Miyanoshita Onsen, Gora Onsen, just to name a few of the famous ones.

 

In order to visit an onsen on your day trip, it’s best if it’s close to Hakone Yumoto Station, the access point to the Hakone area from Tokyo. Below are some hot springs facilities you might want to visit.

 

Yu no Sato Okada

This is a traditional hot springs facility using water from 5 different hot springs sources, so you’ll be able to enjoy different types of hot springs at this one facility. They also have a restaurant where you can eat and a relaxation room where you can take a break after your bath.

  •  Opening Hours:

Their regular hot springs hours are from 11 am to 11 pm (entry is permitted only until 10 pm). They also have a limited early morning option from 6 am to 9 am. And their restaurant is open from noon to 10 pm (last orders are until 9:30 pm).

  • Access:

Take the Yumoto Ryokan Shuttle Bus  (Route A)  from Hakone Yumoto Station to Hotel Okada. It’s about a 5 minute bus ride and around 100 yen one way. Buses leave every 30 minutes from 9 am to 6:45 pm from the station. After getting to the hotel, take the elevator to the 8th floor and follow the signs to the hot springs facility. 

 

The shuttle bus stop is across the street from Hakone Yumoto station to the left. The small buses are orange and white colored so you should be able to find them quite easily.

  • Address: 191 Yumotochaya, Hakone-machi, Ashigara Shimo-gun, Kanagawa
  •  More information: Yunosato Okada

 

Tenseien

This is a facility nestled in the mountains of Hakone. You’ll have a great view of the surrounding nature from the spacious outdoor baths, with nothing between you and the big blue sky. There’s a restaurant and a room where you can take a nap, so you can spend a whole day here doing nothing but relaxing.

  • Opening Hours:

They’re open from 10am to 9 am the next morning. And since you can rent towels and a “yukata” or light kimono to wear inside the facility you can visit without bringing anything. 

  • Access:

Take the Yumoto Ryokan Shuttle Bus (A Route) from Hakone Yumoto Station and tell the driver you want to get off at Tenseien. It’s about a 5 minute bus ride and 100 yen one way. The bus leaves every 30 minutes from 10:45 am to 6:45 pm and at a shorter 10 to 30 minute interval from 7:45 am to 10:45 am. It’s also only a 12 minute walk from the station, so you don’t have to take the bus to get there.

 

The shuttle bus stop is across the street from the station to the left. The small buses are orange and white colored so you should be able to find them quite easily.

  • Address682 Yumoto, Hakone-machi, Ashigara Shimo-gun, Kanagawa

 

YUNESSUN

This is a hot spring theme park in Hakone. The outdoor baths are enjoyed in swimsuits like a pool so both men and women can enjoy the experience together. So, it’s a great place to go with friends or family. It’s also good for people who are not ready to go stark naked in front of other people. It’s also lots of fun because they have very unique baths like a wine bath or a Japanese “sake” bath. They also have a more traditional hot springs area called “Mori no Yu”, where you need to remove all your clothing.

 

This theme park is a place you should go on weekdays, as it gets really crowded on weekends and you may have to wait over an hour just to get in.

  • Opening Hours: YUNESSUN is open from 9 am to 7 pm, and Mori no Yu is open from 11 am to 8 pm
  • Access:

From Hakone Yumoto Station, take the Hakone Tozan Bus or the Izu-Hakone Bus for about 20 minutes and get off at Kowaki-en Bus stop. The entrance is just up the hill from the bus stop.

  • Address: 1297 Ninohira, Hakone-machi, Ashigara Shimo-gun, Kanagawa
  • More information: Yunnesun Spas

 

Things to do in Hakone 

There are so many things to do in Hakone. You can visit hot springs like the ones mentioned above, or you can go see some sightseeing spots. Below are some of the most popular sightseeing spots among tourists. See what you like and try to make an itinerary for your day trip.

 

Lake Ashi Cruise 

 

 

This is a relaxing cruise on Lake Ashi. You can see the Torii gate of Hakone Shrine from the boat, and if it’s a clear sunny day, you may even be able to see Mount Fuji. Lake Ashi is in an elongated shape with two ports (Hakonemachi-ko and Motohakone-ko) on one end and a third (Togendai-ko) on the other end. It takes about 25 minutes from one to the other, and about 1 hour round trip. 

  • Fees: One way trip:  around 1,000 yen for adults / arond 500 yen for children
  • Round trip:  1,840 yen for adults / 910 yen for children (*you must get on and off at the same port)
  • Access 

From Hakone Yumoto station, you can get to the closest port, Hakonemachi-ko, by getting on the Hakone Tozan Bus or the Tokai Bus Orange Shuttle bound for Moto-Hakone/Hakone/machi. It takes about 40 to 50 minutes and costs 960 yen one way. 

 

Hakone Shrine 

 

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This shrine is popular as a spiritual power spot. You can see it’s red “torii” gate built of the shore of Lake Ashi. It’s a mysterious shrine standing in the middle of a forest.

  • Address: Hakone jinja, 80-1 Motohakone, Hakone-machi Ashigarashimo-gun, Kanagawa
  • Opening Hours: Open anytime, but you should go while it’s light
  • Access: 

From Hakone Yumoto station, take the Hakone Tozan Bus bound for Moto Hakone/Hakone Machi, and get off at Moto-Hakone-ko bus stop. It takes about 40 minutes and costs 960 yen. It’s a 10 minute walk from the bus stop.

 

Hakone Open Air Museum 

 

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This museum has many exhibits outdoors as you can guess from its name. It’s not conventional in the sense that it’s not a quiet atmosphere where you just gaze at various works of art. There are exhibits that children can play in as well, so it’s a fun place for the whole family to visit. Just make sure it’s not raining on the day of your visit.

  • AddressNinotaira 1121, Hakone-machi, Ashigarashimo-gun, Kanagawa
  • Opening Hours: 9:00 - 17:00 (last entry 16:30)
  • Fees: 1,800 yen for adults / 1,400 yen for high school & university students / 600 yen for elementary & middle school students
  • Access

By bus from Hakone Yumoto Station, take the Hakone Tozan or Izu-Hakone Bus to Ninotaira Iriguchi bus stop. It’s a 5 minute walk to the museum from the bus stop. By train, take the Hakone Tozan Railway from Hakone Yumoto Station to Chokoku-no-Mori Station. It’s a 2 minute walk from the station.

 

Owakudani

 

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This valley is full of steam vents pumping out hot steam from the volcanic Mount Hakone. It’s an amazing place where you can see the geothermal energy for yourself. The eggs cooked black in the steam from the vents are a famous delicacy. Why don’t you try one? It’s pretty tasty despite the color.

  • Address: Owakudani Hot Spring, 1251 Sengokuhara, Hakone-machi Ashigarashimo-gun, Kanagawa
  • Opening Hours: 8:30 - 17:00
  • Access: Hakone ropeway, Owakudani Station.

From Hakone Yumoto Station, get on the Hakone Tozan Railway to Gora Station (40 minutes, 400 yen). Then get on the Hakone Tozan Cable Car from Gora Station to Sounzan Station (10 minutes, 420 yen). Finally, get on the Hakone Ropeway from Souzan Station to Owakudani Station (8 minutes, 900 yen). From Togendai station (near Togendai port) to Owakudani Station on the Hakone ropeway, it’s a 16 minute ride and costs 1,120 yen.

 

Hotels in Hakone

If you have time, you should definitely stay overnight in Hakone. There are many hotels you can stay in at Hakone, but there are two main types. One would be a regular western style hotel. And the other is a traditional Japanese hotel called a “Ryokan”. Which one you prefer depends on if you want to stay at a kind of place you’re used to or if you want to try a real Japanese experience. Both types usually have a large hot springs facility where you can bathe. Some places have rooms with a private bath.

 

Below are some examples of popular luxurious accommodations in Hakone. Of course, there are many other smaller or more reasonable accommodations, but Hakone is a place you should treat yourself, if you can, to a nice hotel with a hot spring to relax in.

 

 Hakone Hotel

  • Address: 65 Hakone, Hakonemachi, Ashigarashimogun, Kanagawa
  • Website: Hakone Hotel

 The Prince Hakone Lake Ashinoko

 Gora Kadan

  • Address: 1300 Goura, Hakone-machi, Ashigarashimo-gun, Kanagawa
  • Website: Gora kadan Hotel 

 

Would like to have more Local experiences? I think I can help you!

Taking a side trip to Hakone while staying in Tokyo is a really amazing experience. You’ll need to navigate the many trains and buses, but if you’re used to traveling around foreign countries, it shouldn’t be a problem. Hakone is a very popular sightseeing area among foreign tourists, so you’ll find there are many signs in English which should help you get around.

 

If you think this will be a bit much for you, you can always hire a tour guide to take you around Hakone. You can also check our full list of Hakone Tours by Local Guides.

 

Want to make your Hakone Tour more Interesting? Here's how!

 

GoWithGuide ,the Best Private Tours and Locals Guides across Japan. If you are interested to know more and save your time during your trip to Hakone, you can Send a Message to our local guides to get a customized itinerary and quotation for an unforgettable experience.

 

On the GoWithGuide website you can find the best professional Local Guides all across Japan to help you plan your trip. Check our Private Tours for Hakone.

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Hello :) I am Macco, a licensed tour guide. I love eating and traveling, so I call myself "EATraveler". I'd like you to experience "tasty (oishi)" Japan, so my tour will be full of nice food. I was born and grew up in Osaka, and now I live in a small fishing town called Manazuru (near Hakone area) after living in Tokyo for more than 10 years. I fell in love with a beautiful scenary of the sea and mounains of Manazuru, and I really enjoy a relaxing life here. So I'd like to show you around this cozy town, which will make you feel nostargic and relaxed. I also work as an editor & writer. My recent works are mainly books about food and drinks, such as fermented food, dried food, cocktails and bars, Japanese sake, coffee, cheese, tea, as well as agriculture and food issues. Based on this background, I'd like to offer you amazing food experiences in Japan and enjoy EATraveling together :) Looking forward to seeing you in Manazuru!                                                                                                                                 

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Hello, I’m Shin, a national Certified Guide Interpreter in English, as well as an experienced professional tour guide for Japanese tourists of one of the biggest travel agencies in Japan. It'll be my pleasure to help you to make your own tour of your own interests and good experiences in Japan. I have many experiences of guiding corporate and business executives from abroad to the sightseeing spots of their interests. I also have a license for nursing care. If you have any concerns or anxiety about moving by using the stick or the wheelchair in the tour, I’ll be happy to support you. I hope you enjoy the trip to Japan.                                                                                                                                 

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I’m so excited to have a chance to show you around my favorite spots in Kanagawa prefecture. I was born in Kanagawa. I spent my whole school life, including university, here in Kanagawa. I worked as a high school English teacher here for 40 years. I love Kanagawa so much. We have many interesting tourist spots, like Hakone, Kamakura, Enoshima and Yokohama. I got my tour guide license in English in 2009. I am still an English teacher. To give an interesting and impressive lesson to young high school students, I’ve learnt and gathered many kinds of information. I also have a license to teach social studies, so I have a wide range of knowledge about Japanese culture and history. I’m sure to provide you an interesting tour.                                                                                                                                 

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