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Fuji Five Lakes Adventuring

Mount Fuji from Kawaguchiko.
Each year in preparation for our trip to Hokkaido we head off to the Fuji Five Lakes region for a bit of biking, camping, and exploring. Bikes get folded up into bags and bundled on the train. We guerrilla camp and are up with the sun to sip hot coffee and eat breakfast as Kawaguchiko slowly wakes up. Just as the first cable car starts making is way up to a nearby viewing platform we are nearly to one of our favorite places in the world - the Sengen Shrine - and onward to Motsuko.

The trip never fails to thrill us with sights of the familiar and the new, the delicious and the strange. I can't recommend it enough. And to that end, here's a complete list of links to get you started on a homemade adventure of your own.

A few thoughts on where to stay and what to do...

Bike Touring in Kawaguchiko - A quick run-down of local sights to take in by bicycle. Our version of this has since changed, but this route is a good place to start.

Do-It-Yourself Eco-tourism in Kawaguchiko - Again, a first version of a now beloved trip, but still an excellent place to start. We keep this plan in mind in case of rain or a certain feeling of laziness.

Hiking Mitsutoge - A remarkable hike that brought us at the end to the Sengen Shrine with its towering trees and strikingly beautiful old temple.

And because no trip is complete without sampling local fare...

Houtou Udon in Kawaguchiko - One of the best meals ever and we return to the same restaurant every time to eat this favorite food.

Kawaguchiko's Fresh Vegetable Stand - There are no shortage of excellent eating opportunities in this area, and local growers make the most of the opportunity to get the attention of stomachs craving something other than ice cream and Fuji-shaped cookies. (Although, those are both quite good, too.)

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