Hakone Tozan Railway and Cable Car (Odawara to Owakudani) | Japan Solo Travel 2017

July 18, 2017

Hakone Tozan Train from Odawara to Hakone-Yumoto

Due to the influx of people at Odawara Station, I eventually lost the couple I was following to Hakone and didn't get a chance to properly thank them for bringing me around :( With the delays I faced while travelling to Hakone, it was already 10am by the time I reached my first stop, Odawara.

The good news is because I got my Hakone Free Pass online, I didn't have to queue to top up my card or buy a one-way train ticket in Hakone. It was easy for me to travel around the whole of Hakone with my free pass.

Japanese queuing up in an orderly manner for the train

Hakone Tozan Railway is a 40-minute ride from Odawara to Hakone-Yumoto. If you travel to Hakone during the cherry blossom season or autumn, you'll be treated to the magnificent views during the train ride. Because I was in Hakone during winter, most of the trees were barren. However, I got to witness the train changing conductor and moving backwards while climbing up the steep hills of Gora — a unique aspect of Hakone Tozan Railway.

It was heartwarming to see an elderly couple looking at each other adoringly while whispering to each other and laughing together. Witnessing this short five seconds ofinteractionn between this adorable couple reaffirmed my belief that true love never grows old, and I hope I find someone like this in the future.

Wanted posters plastered on train stations

Hello, Gora!

Did a quick transfer at Gora from Hakone Tozan Railway to Hakone Tozan Cable Car, a nine-minute tram ride that brings travellers to Sounzan. There are four stations between Gora and Sounzan — travellers who are spending a night or more in Hakone may wish to stop in between to explore Hakone. Otherwise, Hakone Tozan Cable Car provides travellers with a panoramic views of Hakone's mountains.

Alighting at Sounzan Station

I reached Hakone on 11 January 2017, literally one day after Hakone Ropeway was suspended from Sounzan Station to Owakudani Station. Talk about bad luck. Fortunately, true to Japan's considerate attitude, we were offered shuttle bus services from Sounzan Station to Owakudani Station so I could easily continue with my Hakone itinerary.

On our way up to Owakudani Station, I spotted snow for the first time in my life! Thank goodness I had the window seat as I couldn't stop myself marvelling at the scene, snapping photographs, taking videos and shrieking internally. I'm sure I would have annoyed other passangers if I had someone with me to verbalise my excitement.

The hunt for Mt Fuji

Then I saw something that made my heart stop.


Japan Solo Travel (January 2017)

Tokyo Summary and Getting Around Tokyo | Tokyo Imano Hostel Review | Tokyo Pokemon Centre & Shibuya Crossing | Tokyo Lockers and Shinjuku Gyoen Garden | Tokyo Harajuku (Shopping, Food, Daiso) | Tokyo bills Omotesando (Tokyu Plaza)

Hakone One Day Itinerary | Hakone Tozan Railway and Cable Car | Seeing Mt Fuji at Owakudani | Hakone Ropeway and Sightseeing Cruise | Trekking to see Hakone Shrine and Mt Fuji

9 Hours Narita Capsule Hotel Review | Tokyo Narita Airport

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