japanJoel & Robin Japan 2001

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Day 3: Bullet Train to Hakone

We left in the morning on the crowded Tokyo subway. It's a huge, comprehensive system.

Entrance to the subway.

From there, we got on the famed bullet train. The bullet train is actually not as fast as the French TGV, but it's still pretty impressive - fast, smooth, and clean. At the end of each run, cleaning ladies stand by every door and do a really thorough cleaning.

The bullet train arrives in Tokyo

We transferred to a local train, and arrived in the Japanese Alps at Hakone, the Mt. Fuji region. There we stopped at the Hakone Open Air Museum, a sculpture garden with a beautiful view.

Art and Koi at the Hakone Open Aire Museum.

Then we got back on the local train, then transferred to a funicular (a type of cable car). Then we got on the Hakone Ropeway, a gondola ride through the mountains, over areas steaming with hot springs.

View of the Hakone ropeway, and hot springs beneath.

At the end of the ride, a beautiful mountain lake - with excursion boats right out of DisneyWorld. Also, in theory, a view of Mt. Fuji. Can you see it in the distance? (I can't either - oh wait, there it is in the distance).

Lake Ashi

We stayed the night at a hotel with mineral baths, which the Japanese love, but we didn't try out. We did have a traditional Kaiseki-style dinner - lots of small portions of interesting food.

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2001 Joel Abrams. All rights to images reserved.