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How to travel between the Fuji Five Lakes and Kyoto

By shinkansen

Take a direct Hikari train on the JR Tokaido Shinkansen from Kyoto Station to Mishima Station (two hours, 11,000 yen, one direct train every two hours) and transfer to a Fujikyu bus to Kawaguchiko Station (1.5 hours, 2300 yen one way, see timetable, reserve online) in the Fuji Five Lakes region. There are additional train connections between Kyoto and Mishima that require a transfer along the way.

Japan Rail Pass holders can save a little bit money by taking local JR trains from Mishima to Gotemba (one transfer of trains at Numazu along the way) and then board the Kawaguchiko-bound Fujikyu bus at Gotemba Station (1 hour, 1540 yen one way, see timetable) instead of Mishima Station.

The Japan Rail Pass is valid on Hikari and Kodama trains along the JR Tokaido Shinkansen as well as on local JR trains between Mishima and Gotemba, but the buses between Mishima, Gotemba, and Kawaguchiko are not covered.

By bus

Fujikyu Bus operates daily overnight buses between Kawaguchiko and Osaka, stopping in Kyoto (Kyoto Station Hachijo Exit) along the way. The one way trip from Kyoto takes about 9.5 hours and costs between 6,400 and 8,400 yen depending on the level of luxury the bus offers. Discounted round trip tickets are also available. Reservations can be made online via Japan Bus Online.

Above fees and schedules are subject to change. Be sure to check current yen exchange rates.

Getting around

The two major transportation hubs in the Fuji Five Lake region are Kawaguchiko Station and nearby Fujisan Station (formerly known as Fujiyoshida Station), both located along the Fujikyu Railway Line. From these two stations, buses depart into all directions, providing access to the five lakes and other attractions.

Bus Network Map:

The Omni buses are generally the easiest way for tourists to get around. There are three lines starting from Kawaguchiko Station: the red Kawaguchiko Line (buses every 20 minutes) runs along the eastern and northern shores of Lake Kawaguchiko while the green Saiko Line (buses every 2 hours) runs along the southern shore of Lake Kawaguchiko and around Lake Saiko. The blue Narusawa Shojiko Motosuko Line (buses every 2-4 hours) serves Lake Shojiko and Lake Motosuko. A pass for unlimited use of all three lines on two consecutive calendar days costs 1500 yen.

For transportation between Kawaguchiko, Fujiyoshida, Oshino Village and around Lake Yamanakako the Fujikko Bus can be useful, with buses running every hour. A 2-day pass for unlimited use of the Fujikko bus on two consecutive calendar days costs 1500 yen.

Another tourist bus is the Mount Fuji World Heritage Loop Bus, which departs Kawaguchiko Station every 90 minutes and makes stops at multiple sites of interest including near the Chureito Pagoda and at Oshino Village before looping back to Kawaguchiko Station. A 2-day pass for unlimited use of the the World Heritage Loop Bus on two consecutive calendar days costs 1050 yen.

Apart from the above-mentioned tourist buses, there is a network of regular buses, which can be useful for access to the more remote Lake Shojiko and Motosuko, as well as in the direction of Oshino, Lake Yamanakako and Gotemba. Another bus line of interest connects Kawaguchiko Station with the Fuji Subaru Line 5th Station halfway up Mount Fuji.

A rental car can also be a convenient way to get around, especially if visiting places outside of central Kawaguchiko. A few rental car outlets can be found near Kawaguchiko Station. Similarly, a rental bicycle can be an attractive way to get around, although some roads in the region are rather busy and distances between the lakes are considerable.

Passes and Tickets

Several passes are available for the Fuji Five Lake area, which can provide savings and comfort:

  • Fuji Hakone Pass (9340 yen)
    The Fuji Hakone Pass is a pass for foreign tourists, which provides transportation within the Fuji Five Lakes region and the neighboring Hakone area in addition to a one-way trip between Tokyo and Hakone.
  • Fujigoko Enjoy Ticket (5100 yen)
    This ticket combines a round trip by highway bus from Shinjuku to Kawaguchiko or Yamanakako (regular cost: at least 3500 yen) with a 2-day pass for either the omni buses or the Fujikko bus (regular cost: 1500 yen). It also qualifies for discounts on selected tourist attractions. It is valid for up to seven days. The ticket can be purchased at the bus terminal in Shinjuku.
  • Fuji Q Highland Plans
    There are various discount travel plans available for a visit to the Fuji Q Highland amusement park. The plans combine access by bus with park passports and in some cases accommodation.
  • Fujisan Fujigoko Passport
    This ticket provides unlimited use of Fujikyu buses around the Fuji Five Lakes, including the omni buses and the Fujikko bus on two consecutive calendar days. The pass is sold at the Fujikyu ticket counters at Kawaguchiko Station, Fujisan Station, Mishima Station, Fujinomiya Station, Gotemba Station and the Asashigaoka/Yamanakako bus stop. Two versions are available: one that also includes the entire Fujikyu Railway Line (3600 yen) and one that includes Fujikyu trains only between Kawaguchiko and Shimoyoshida Station (2600 yen). The following map shows the pass' coverage area:

Hotels around Fuji Five Lakes

Top rated around the Fuji Five Lakes
Budget:
    • Ururun Kawaguchiko
      Budget-friendly
      A 7-minute walk from Lake Kawaguchi, the 2-person cottages at Ururun have a quaint European charm and offer a spa bath with Mount Fuji views. Sleeping arrangements are Japanese-style, with futon bedding on a tatami (woven-straw) floor. Parking is free. Each cottage has a fully equipped kitchen with a microwave and a living area with a sofa, a TV and a DVD player. Each cottage comes with a spa bath with Mount Fuji views. Free Wi-Fi is available. Kawaguchiko Train Station is a 15-minute drive or a taxi ride and Fuji-Q Highland amusement park is a 15-minute drive away. Kawaguchi Asama shrine is a 10-minute walk from the property, and Nishikawa Bus Stop is a 3-minute walk. In warm weather, guests can unwind out on the patio.
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    • Umeya Annex
      Budget-friendly
      Umeya Annex is a Japanese private home run by an oshi, or a religious teacher that guides and assists visitors on pilgrimages. The property is located next to the oshi's home that was built in 1776 and the only one existing in Kawaguchiko. Free WiFi is featured throughout the property. All units are air conditioned and have a flat-screen TV. A microwave and fridge are also provided, as well as a kettle. There is a shared bathroom with a shower in every unit. The Arakura Sengen Shrine and the iconic five storied Chureito pagoda are around 5 km away from the property. The location offers stunning views of Mt Fuji in combination with the pagoda, where guests can also enjoy gazing at cherry blossoms during the spring season. The property is located in Fujikawaguchiko, 2.4 km from Lake Kawaguchi. Mount Fuji is 19 km from the property.
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    • HOSTEL MICHIKUSA-YA
      Mid-range
      Set in Fujikawaguchiko, less than 1 km from Lake Kawaguchi, HOSTEL MICHIKUSA-YA offers accommodation with a shared lounge, free private parking and a garden. This 3-star hostel offers a shared kitchen and luggage storage space. The hostel features family rooms. Featuring a shared bathroom with a bidet and slippers, rooms at the hostel also have free WiFi, while selected rooms here will provide you with a lake view. Guests at HOSTEL MICHIKUSA-YA will be able to enjoy activities in and around Fujikawaguchiko, like cycling. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Fujiomuro Sengen Shrine, Kawaguchiko Muse Museum and Yagizaki Park.
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    • Fuji Guest House Ao
      Budget-friendly
      Located in Fujikawaguchiko, 3.3 km from Lake Kawaguchi, Fuji Guest House Ao provides accommodation with a shared lounge, private parking and a terrace. Featuring free bikes, the 1-star hostel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, each with a shared bathroom. Local points of interest like Fujiomuro Sengen Shrine and Kawaguchi Asama Shrine are reachable within 2.9 km and 6 km, respectively. Guest rooms include bed linen. Mount Kachi Kachi Ropeway is 1.5 km from the hostel, while Lake Kawaguchi Ohashi Bridge is 2.8 km away.
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    • JINYA Fujikawaguchiko
      Mid-range
      Just a 5-minute walk from Kawaguchiko Station, JINYA Fujikawaguchiko is located in Fujikawaguchiko. Free WiFi, private parking, a washing and drying machine are provided. All units in the hotel are equipped with a kitchenette with a fridge, microwave and an electric kettle. Guest rooms feature air conditioning, a private bathroom and a toilet. Bed linen, towels and a hairdryer are provided. Selected rooms feature a dining table and a sofa. Mount Fuji is 16 km away from the hotel, while Mount Fuji 5th Station is a 65-minute bus ride away.
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    • Fufu Kawaguchiko
      Luxury
      Set in Fujikawaguchiko, 5 km from Lake Kawaguchi, Fufu Kawaguchiko offers accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, a bar and a shared lounge. Among the facilities at this property are a 24-hour front desk and room service, along with free WiFi throughout the property. The hotel has a garden and provides a terrace. The units at the hotel come with air conditioning, a seating area, a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, a safety deposit box and a private bathroom with a hot tub, bathrobes and slippers. Fufu Kawaguchiko features certain units with lake views, and rooms include a patio. At the accommodation all rooms are fitted with bed linen and towels. Guests at Fufu Kawaguchiko can enjoy an Asian breakfast. The wellness area at the hotel is comprised of a hot spring bath and a sauna. Guests at Fufu Kawaguchiko will be able to enjoy activities in and around Fujikawaguchiko, like cycling. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Kawaguchi Asama Shrine, Itchiku Kubota Art Museum and Notenburo Tensui.
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    • Villa May Queen
      Budget-friendly
      Offering great views of Mount Fuji, Villa May Queen offers 2-storey self-catering accommodation located just a 3-minute walk to Lake Kawaguchi. Guests can borrow bicycles for free to explore the local area. WiFi is offered throughout the property. While staying at the property, guests can prepare their own meals using kitchen appliances like IH cooking stoves, a microwave and a rice cooker. The living room has a sofa, a table and a flat-screen TV. Barbecue facilities can be used in summer free of charge. May Queen Villa is a 7-minute drive from Kawaguchiko Train Station. Fujikyu Highland Amusement Park is a 15-minute drive away. A supermarket and a 24-hour convenience store are located nearby.
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    • Mizno Hotel
      Mid-range
      Offering beautiful Mount Fuji views from its hot-spring baths, guest rooms and hot tub, Mizno Hotel is a 5-minute drive from Kawaguchiko Train Station. Located on a hilltop and overlooking Lake Kawaguchi, the hotel serves Japanese cuisine with an advance reservation. Free Wi-Fi is available in all areas. Guests at Mizno Hotel can sleep in Western-style beds, or experience traditional futon bedding on a tatami (woven-straw) floor in one of the Japanese-style rooms. All rooms are air-conditioned and have an LCD TV and Yukata robes. The shore of Lake Kawaguchi is a 2-minute walk. Fuji-Q Highland amusement park and Fuji-Omuro Sengen Shrine are less than a 15-minute drive from the hotel. On-site parking is free, and free pick-up from Kawaguchiko Station is offered from 15:00-18:00. Mount Fuji 5th Station for climbing is a 1-hour bus ride from Kawaguchiko Station. Relaxation options include a sauna and massages. The hotel has English-speaking and French-speaking staff. A nightcap can be enjoyed at the bar.
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    • Kawaguchiko Urban Resort Villa
      Budget-friendly
      Kawaguchiko Urban Resort Villa offers accommodation in Fujikawaguchiko, 40 metres from Lake Kawaguchi. Guests benefit from terrace. The kitchen features a microwave and a refrigerator and there is a private bathroom. A flat-screen TV with cable channels, as well as a CD player are featured. Other facilities at Kawaguchiko Urban Resort Villa include a barbecue. Mount Fuji is 11 km from Kawaguchiko Urban Resort Villa, while Kawaguchiko Natural Living Centre and Oishi Park are 3minutes on foot, and Fuji Oishi Hanaterrace, 1minute. Guests can make use of barbecue facilities in the property's private garden for dinner.
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    • Guesthouse Honobono
      Budget-friendly
      Renovated in September 2018, Guesthouseほのぼの offers an accommodation with free WiFi in Fujikawaguchiko, 1.3 km from Lake Kawaguchi. Free private parking is available on site on a first-come, first-serve basis as well as prior reservation. Free shuttle service is available upon prior request from the property to Kawaguchiko Station. There is a shared kitchen and lounge at the property. Guests can make some coffee and tea free of charge. You will find a bath made from hinoki cypress, and underfloor heating is provided in the bathroom. Bath amenities including towels, toiletries and toothbrushes are available at the front desk for a fee. Mount Fuji is 16 km from Guesthouseほのぼの, while Shimobe Hot Spring is 26 km away.
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