Archive for 'Hakone' Category
Hakone Ropeways resumed its service partillay from Togendai station (the ground) to Owakudani station (middle of the mountain) on April 23rd. (http://www.hakoneropeway.co.jp/foreign/en/index.cgi)
The air ropeway service between Togendai-Ubako-Owakudani-Sounzan was partially suspended due to the smoking erupations of the Hakone Mountain in Owakudani area since May 6th 2015 (Togendai-Ubako has been in operation though). However, the erupting situations there now became kind of placated and the line Togendai-Owakudani has been resumed. Still, passengers can’t get on the cargo from Ubako but only from Togendai ,and they are not allowed to get out of the station building at Owakudani. Although there bus services substituting the ropeways are in operation, the buses don’t stop at Owakudani.
And the famous and popular sourvenir of Owakudani, the Black Eggs have now been resumed to be sold since April 29th, as the producing sites of the eggs have become safer. Still, ordinary visitors have not been allowed to get out of the station building there, the black eggs are soled only at the station and places other than the area. The black eggs are believed to be very good to health and if you eat one, your longevity is said to be extended for three years.
A new facility for tourists opened at Hakone-machi port on the lakeside of Lake Ashi in Hakone, Kanagawa pref. on this Jan.23rd. The name of this new establishment is “Hotoriya”(means; a shop on a lakeside ) and is a commercial complex of “wa-cafe”(/traditional Japanese style cafe) and sourvenir shops.
Hotoriya’s nickname is “Chaya-honjin”(means;cafe-style main local guest house ) because the building has a figure of an old main local guest house of hundreds of years ago where high-class samurai warriors stayed when Hakone was an important check point of travelers to monitor and control people by the Tokugawa Shogunate. Eating facilities and sourvenir shop to provide a variety of local food, beer,and other sorts of sourvenirs are in the establishement. Some of those shops are directly run by the operarion company of this facility, Hakone Sightseeing Cruise Co.,ltd.(http://www.hakone-kankosen.co.jp/foreign/en/index.html) and some are branch shops of renowned old major shops from Hakone and other neighboring areas. And from the cafes, you may enjoy magestic and panoramic views of Mt.Fuji and Lake Ashi.
The open hours of souvenir shops on the 1st floor is daily 9:30-17:00 and cafes on the 2nd floor is daily 10:00-16:00.
Two huge international travel marts were held at Tokyo Bigsight in Tokyo. One was “Visit Japan Travel Mart 2014″(Sep.24-26)(http://www.vjtm.jp/) and the other was “JATA Toursim EXPO Japan2014″(Sep.25-28)(http://t-expo.jp/en/index.html).
More than 310 foriegn buyers and about 390 Japanese sellers joined VJTM2014 and had passionate exchanges of information and ideas and hosted busines seccions. Buyers from Asian countries were especially a lot and about the half of the Japanese sellers were municipalities or relating associations of such local governments.
On the other hand, a lot of domestic and foreign sellers and buysers joined JATA Tourism EXPO Japan 2014. Such participants were embassies, tourism bureaus, travel agents, food companies, municipalities, railroads, airlines, hotels. universities, guide associations and so forth. The main targets were end users of travel services and a lot of lay Japanese people visited there and the total number was 157,589. Upon the opening of the event, an ward ceremony of good services and efforts of related promotions was hosted and the Best Tourism Award was given to The Tourism Authority of Thailand and Embassy awards were for Thailand and Mexico, the best transporatation award was for Japan Railways East, the domestic inbound award was for the tourism department of Tokyo Metropolis, the publicity award was for a TV show of CXTV, and the chairperson special award was for Okinawa Convention Bureau. (http://t-expo.jp/en/program/cms.html) I personally visited the two big events and collected a lot of interesting information and exchanged ideas with the participants, some of whom were my friends or those I sometimes work with. I enjoyed the delicious food provided by tourism- related restaurants and local specialities and impressed by the greatly enthusiastic atmosphere of energies of the expos as well.
Hakone, one of the most popular tourists’ destinations and hot spring resort in Kanagawa Pref. near Mt. Fuji declared it had been visited by 20,857,000 tourists (increased by 7.3 % compared to the year before) in 2013. (http://www.town.hakone.kanagawa.jp/) The town visited by more than 20 million tourists for the first time in three years and the first time after the earthquake disaster in 2011 and the number is the highest since 1996.
The one-day travelers number was 16,140,000 (increased by 9%) and that of those who stayed overnight was 4,717,000 (increased by 1.8 %). The number of foreign visitors overnight reached 168,000, which the record high and increased by 80.5% compared to the minimum number of 63,000 in 2011 when the disaster occurred. The number of foreign one-day tourists there is assumed to be about 482,000. New faclities may be one of the sources that have attracted such high number of visitors there. It is said the primary sources of such an increase in the number may be the depreciation of Yen these days and relaxations of visa conditions to tourists from asean countries. The number of people from US, China, Korea, Taiwan, and southeast Asian countries visiting Hakone is amazingly increasing. The upcoming Tokyo Olympics may be a source of such rising popularity of some area in Japan as well.
“Setsubun”, an equinox falls on February 3rd and it is customary to throw soybeans to dispel evil at Setsubun festivals on the day as other writers and I have referred to in this site. But what happpens at the Setsubun festival hosted by Hakone Shrine in the popular hot spring resort in Kanagawa is slghtly different. After “ordinary” processesof festival have finished, Oni or Japanese style evil (people who the parts) run away on a boat on the Lake Ashi near the facility and priests and other good people chase them to throw beans, This year that festival on the lake was very popular and a lot of people visited there.
A lot of Japanese are quite happy and excited with this big news. A special committee consisting of special staff of Yamanashi prefectural government and that of Shizuoka prefecture has resolved to start collecting a 1,000 yen admission fee per person for Mt. Fuji on trial basis from climbers 9:00am to 6:00pm Jul.25-Aug.3 which is a high summer period, called “Mt.Fuji Conservation Cooperation Money”. That fee, however, is not compulsory and those who make that contribution will be given a commemorative tin badge.
ICOMOS resolved to recommend Mr.Fuji, the highest mountain of Japan and a popular tourists’ destination which is thought to be one of Japan’s symbol, and its related areas as a World Cultural Heritage Site on May 1st. (http://www.icomos.org/fr/)
ICOMOS has authority to recommend candidates of a World Heritage Site to UNESCO(http://www.unesco.org/new/en/), and as once such a candidate is recommended, it is highly probable that candidate is to be designated as such a Site.
Therefore, Mt. Fuji is highly supposed to be designated at the UNESCO World Heritage Committee which is to be held from June 16th and on in Cambodia. So many people, the Japanese government, municipal governments, and tourism related industries, and others are all excited and a huge expectation.
ICOMOS excluded one area of Miho-no-Matsubara from the object of recommendation, as the area is remote and apart from Mt. Fuji itself.Still the Council for Cultural Affairs which is the advisory committee for the Commissioner of Agency for Cultural Affairs retains that area as a part of the candidate and expects the perfect designation.
Hakone Yuryo, a new hot spring facility opened in Hakone Yumoto, the basic station area of Hakone resort area on March 27th. (http://www.hakoneyuryo.jp/ or http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.488238681231944.1073741826.442578639131282&type=3)
Hakone Yuryo(/箱根湯寮, a hot spring facility in Hakone) is established for visitors who would like to enjoy hot spring baths and related services of relaxation in one-day tours.
Hakone Yuryo is located in the vicinity of Hakone Yumoto station and free shuttle buses can take you there taking just 3 minutes. The facility is equipped with big public bath, 19 private open-air baths, some other types of bath items, a restaurant, souvenir shop, a massage parlor ,and stuff. The basic fee of an adult visitor(13 years or older ) is 1300 yen (≒＄13 )and of a child is 650 yen, and additional services require surcharges respectively.
Owakudani aerial railway station’s new building opened after a long term of remodeling construction in Hakone on April 24th.
Hakone as a whole is a quite famous and popular tourist destination among both Japanese and foreign tourists, and Owakudani is one of the most popular part in the hot spring resort area of Hakone. (http://www.owakudani.com/index-e.html)
Odakyu that owns the facilities there spent 10 billion yen on the construction, as the old building built in 1959 had become very old and also some functions were not good enough. And now, visitors there are able to see the columns of smoke from the Owakudani valley the prominent eye-catcher of the area, Suruga Bay, Tokyo SkyTree, and Mt, Fuji from inside the restaurant inf the new building, all of which were not seen from the old one.
One hundred “life-size” figures of the popular comic character Doraemon will adorn areas in and around Hakone, Kanagawa Prefecture, as part of an event running from March 9 through 31,
Each Doraemon figure will have a different facial expression and “secret tools” that the character is known for, according to Odakyu, which operates trains linking central Tokyo with the scenic Hakone area.
The dolls to be displayed during this year’s event were newly created, according to sources familiar with the matter.
Open air design for “IKKYU” was quite successful, but in comparison, existed inner bath for women was traditionally designed and was seemed enclosed, stuffy, and obsolete. Bathers simply used it as warming their bodies before taking “NOTEN-BURO” or outdoor bath.
Architect, Mr. Hiroshi Ebisawa employed the same concept of “openness” used for the annex bathhouse “IKKYU.” An ordinal and mediocre old inner bath was completely redesigned and reconstructed in 1995.
New women’s inner bath was protruded to the outside next to the outdoor bath in half. You can enjoy feeling in outdoor while staying in an inner bath.
An “URUSHI-BURO” or old “HINOKI” cypress bath lacquered with japan was employed this time. The japan bathtub is maintenance free and can be used without weekly day off.
The Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO), the government entity created to promote tourism from overseas, announced on January 25 that it co-created an English Evangelion tourism pamphlet and “Cool Japan Poster: Hakone” with the Evangelion character Rei Ayanami against the backdrop of Hakone’s Lake Ashi and nearby Mount Fuji.
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During the five years between the opening of expanded new Tenzan in 1987 and additional eating places in 1991, an important social and economy change in policy occurred. Since Japanese yen became stronger in 1885, the government had been encouraging consumers to spend their money domestically. In 1987, Resort Resolution was passed, which gave special tax exemption, to local governments to development of leisure resorts. Over 30 organizations jumped on the opportunity to develop resort hotels, golf courses, ski slopes, and onsen facilities. Read the rest of this entry »
Architect, Mr. Hiroshi Ebisawa designed three characteristic restaurants for Unyu Tenzan in 1991, as I mentioned last time. It is quite interesting to see these restaurants in detail.
1st Floor “NANASE” Barbecue House
1312, Fukazawa, Gotenba-shi, Shizuoka 412-0023
Chelsea Japan Co.,Ltd. Read the rest of this entry »