It's no easy task to get the most from a tour of Kawaguchiko unless you have access to a vehicle and are familiar with the area. With this tour, have fun with a local guide who will reveal all the secrets of the Mount Fuji area.
The area around Kawaguchiko, a splendid natural environment
Kawaguchiko is a lake and small town at the foot of Mount Fuji, but above all, it's a magnificent natural environment, with beautiful forests for walks, waterfalls for cooling off, and temples to honour Mount Fuji hidden amongst the greenery.
Chris, who has lived in Kawaguchiko for years, knows the place like the back of his hand. He will tell you about the types of trees, flowers, moss, and animals that inhabit the area. He knows the best viewpoints to see Mount Fuji, whether on top of a mountain or by a lake.
It will take you to the small local villages, where you will meet the local people; to the almost hidden 1,200 year old shrine to the Princess of Blossom, the goddess of Mount Fuji; to the shores of Lake Saiko, less well known, but one of the most beautiful of the five lakes, with its turquoise waters when the weather is good. Whatever the weather, this moment of sylvotherapy (a practice taken very seriously in Japan) and the majestic and energetic presence of Mount Fuji will conquer your stress.
Jukai, the suicide forest
The Aokigahara forest, or its nickname "Jukai" (literally, "sea of trees"), is a highlight of the tour. Due to Mount Fuji's eruptions, lava flows have formed an irregularly shaped ground at the foot of the mountain, with crevices, sudden breaks, and sometimes caves. Furthermore, as the ground has not had time to accumulate above the rocky flows, the soil is only a few centimetres thick, preventing trees from sinking their roots into the earth. These roots spread out in a twisted pattern on the ground. The trees only grow to a height of about ten metres and are often uprooted by typhoons. The result is a very bizarre forest, beautiful and chaotic at once. Also surprising in this forest are the different varieties of moss, and the various caves that form sudden spaces of darkness in the middle of the greenery.
Some people must have heard this legend: whoever enters this forest unaccompanied, is likely not to come out. Because of the uneven ground, it is not uncommon for a thin layer of leaves or moss to hide a crevice. So be careful not to venture off the paths. In addition, it is said that due to the large mass of volcanic rock, compasses become disoriented and you lose your bearings.
Others may know the Aokigahara Forest as the Suicide Forest, because along with the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, it is one of the most suicidal places in the world. The reason? Everyone has their own theory. The fact remains that the forest rangers regularly patrol the site to prevent any new acts of suicide.
Mount Fuji is not always visible
Mount Fuji is mostly seen in the winter months. In other seasons of the year, especially during the summer when the humidity in the air increases, it is not uncommon for the mountain to be hidden in the clouds. Indeed, due to its massive shape and steep incline, the humid air that abuts Mount Fuji rises to the top and turns into clouds. Needless to mention, without the view of Mt. Fuji, Kawaguchiko can be boring. However, with this guided tour, Chris's presence and his great knowledge and appreciation of Kawaguchiko's nature, whether Mount Fuji is there or not, you will have a great time no matter what!
A flexible, personalised guided tour
Your English-speaking guide will pick you up at your hotel or train station to begin the guided tour which will last 5 to 6h hours. Travel will be by minivan.
As part of our discovery days, your guide will prepare the best itinerary for you, although we also offer the possibility of contacting your guide beforehand if you have specific requests (dietary restrictions, parts of the programme you would like to discuss, etc.).