Lake Yamanakako (山中湖) is the largest of the Fuji Five Lakes and the second most developed lake behind Lake Kawaguchiko with small towns at its western and eastern ends and a few hotels, minshuku, camping grounds and restaurants in between.
There are good views of Mount Fuji from around the lake, especially from along its less developed northern shore. A popular spot to get views of both the mountain and the lake is Panorama Dai, an observation point next to a small parking lot halfway up the mountains southeast of the lake. Panorama Dai is not served by buses and can be reached in about 30 minutes on foot from the "Mikuniyama Hiking Course Iriguchi" bus stop.
Lake Yamanakako is popular among Japanese outdoor sports enthusiasts who enjoy boating, fishing, water skiing, wind surfing and other water sports on the lake, as well as camping, tennis and other activities along its shores. Many sport camps are found around the lake, which become crowded with student athletes during summer holidays.
A few public hot springs baths can also be found around Lake Yamanakako. Benifuji no Yu around the lake's western end is one of surprisingly few establishments with good views of Mount Fuji from its baths. Ishiwari no Yu near the lake's eastern end does not have views of the mountain.
More than a dozen highway buses per day connect Shinjuku Station and Tokyo Station with Lake Yamanakako. The one way trip takes about 2.5 hours and costs 2250 yen from Shinjuku or 2300 yen from Tokyo Station.
From Kawaguchiko Station and Fujisan Station
Buses along the Kawaguchiko-Gotemba-Mishima Line operate once or twice per hour between Kawaguchiko Station and Lake Yamanakako. The one way ride takes about 30 minutes and costs 770 yen. The buses serve the lake's western end and southern shore as far as Asahigaoka, but do not provide a connection to Hirano at the lake's eastern end.
Buses along the Fujisan-Oshino-Hirano Line operate once every 1-2 hours and serve the lake's entire southern shore before terminating in Hirano at the lake's eastern end. The one way trip from Fujisan Station to Hirano takes 35 minutes and costs 790 yen.
Furthermore, there are the Fujikko tourist buses which depart from Fujisan Station and make an entire circle around Lake Yamanakako. A 2-day pass for the Fujikko bus is available for 1500 yen.