While there is no right or wrong way to ‘holiday’, a trip that involves adventuring will usually require somewhat more research than a vacation spent by the poolside. If you’re ready for your next adventure, Tokyo may just be your dream destination.
No, we’re not talking big city lights. We’re talking trekking. While Tokyo is famed for its dazzling city life, it has so much more to offer. Within an easy distance of Tokyo are three picturesque mountains with trekking routes.
Ready for the adventure? Yes, but make sure you’re covered with Chubb Travel Insurance before you dust off those hiking boots and book the next flight out to Japan
As Japan’s highest and most prominent mountain, Mount Fuji is picture perfect. Attracting intrepid hikers from across Japan and the world, Mount Fuji sees thousands of visitors each year, utilising its well-worn tracks to reach its 3,776 metre high summit.
From October to Mid-June, conditions make Mount Fuji pretty much unclimbable, so most visitors stick to the official climbing season between early July and mid-September. Be aware though, this is a seriously popular trek.
During peak season from mid-July to the end of August, you can expect to see crowds of people, with some even queuing up at certain passages. While it’s best to avoid these peak times, climbing in a crowd at Mount Fuji is part of the fun. Embrace the camaraderie!
Because of its popularity and well-marked trails, Mount Fuji allows even inexperienced climbers to trek without a guide. Some sections are steep and rocky, but most it is an easy-going climb. Ensure you have the correct footwear and clothing, be aware of the possibility of altitude sickness, reserve an overnight stay in one of the mountain huts, and time the reach of your summit for sunrise.
For slightly easier trekking – and a much quieter experience – head to Mount Mitake. Less than two hours from Tokyo, Mount Mitake is situated within the Chichibu-Tama-Kai National Park, offering a variety of walking and hiking opportunities.
From the upper station of the Mitake cable car, it is a 20 to 30 minute walk to the famous Musashi-Mitake Shrine on the mountain’s summit. Check out the traditional inns and souvenir shops, then hit the trails to discover the Rock Garden, or nearby Mount Odake.
To get from the shrine at the top of Mount Mitake over to Mount Odake*, there are two possible routes. Choose the higher track along the ridge for a more challenging climb, passing over two peaks before joining the lower track. From there, the walk up to Mount Odake is fairly tough, taking around half an hour – but with the view it offers, it’s more than worth it.
Even closer to Tokyo is Mount Takao, offering breathtaking scenery, a beautiful temple and some very tempting hiking trails. Visitors can choose from the network of trails, taking about 90 minutes to reach the top of the mountain. To cut that time in half, skip the first part by getting a lift on the cable car.
Whether you’re exploring the spectacularly beautiful Mount Mitake or climbing to the peak of Mount Fuji, Japan has so much to offer visitors. One trip here is never enough; you’ll be back in no time!
*Note – Mount Fuji: 3,776m, Mount Mitake: 929m, Mount Odake: 1,265m & Mount Takao: 599m
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