Hakone

DAY 5 · HAKONE · JAPAN

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Of Ryokan, Kaiseki and other traditional Japan stuff in the renowned holiday resort of Hakone

Breakfast before our Shinkansen ride to Hakone!

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Guess which ones were the nooka’s breakfast and which were the princess’ early bite? 😇

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Hi Shinkansen! Look at all the tourist snapping when the train arrived. Yes I do realise I am one of them.

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Here we go!

To the place where the nooka belongs.

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Nooka in his land. Hakone. 🌿

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Arrived at our hotel – Hakone Pax Yoshino. Dropped our bags and headed to Moto-Hakone.

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Had lunch at Bakery & Table. This place is a popular lunch spot in this area, and we were lucky that there was only a 15-mins queue on the day. It has amazing food, and offers lovely view across the lake (potentially at Mt. Fuji if the weather plays nice).

Someone was called upon as *enis. Oh dear. 🙈

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Had their onion gratin soup.

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King of sandwich, filled with domestic beef steak and slab bacon. Juicy and perfect combination. Had them with the summer vegetables and Jalapeno salsa sauce. Such large portion and we were told we were not allowed to share. Really?! Lucky for us we always have room for dessert.

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The amazingly surprising melon crepe. No I did not name it that, they did. But it was quite amazingly surprising to your tastebuds and your eyes

Verdict: Bakery & Table 8/10. Really. The amazingly surprising melon crepe was very amazingly surprising.

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Happy and contented with the lunch and view.

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Sightseeing in Moto-Hakone while waiting for the next cruise to arrive.

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Such thick mist! Noooo. Stop blocking my view of Mt Fuji!

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Ew. Can anyone tell me why there were dead fishes everywhere?

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That’s my cruise! Across Lake Ashi (Ashinoko) to Hakone-en.

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The landmark of Hakone – Red gate of the Hakone Shrine.

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Arrived at Hakone-en, and rushed to the Komagatake ropeway. It’s the vertically tallest ropeway in Japan. But alas, the ropeway was closed due to strong winds. Nooooo! This was our alternate itinerary since the Hakone ropeway was closed because of possible volcanic eruption in the Owakudani region. Oh well … 

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Only thing to do was to visit the aquarium. Okay why not! 🐟

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HAHAHA! He was like, what’s wrong with you man.

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QUAAAACK. He was pretty noisy actually.

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Who? Me?

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Anyone interested in a battle? Bring it on!

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Yeah cuties, I heard you. Just come join my fish-like tongue for a swim. Come on.

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Hehe okay it’s time to get back to the Hakone Pax Yoshino for our pre-booked kaiseki dinner. Our luggages were brought into the room even before we got there. Nice service! We booked the Japanese style room with tatami mats and it was amazing. Just that the corridors outside our room smelt weird. I thought it smelt like goat. It could just be the scent of the tatami mats though.

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The view from our room. Perfect to relax with a cup of green tea.

Time for dinner – Kaiseki dinner within our Ryokan. Kaiseki is a traditional multi-course Japanese dinner that balances the taste, texture, appearance, and colors of food. Here’s the menu for the night:

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My first time in yukata. 👘

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Waiting for our rice to cook in stone pot.

Appetiser

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Shrimp with sauce made of yolk and mustard

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White muskmelon with fish guts pickled in salt

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Tomato jelly

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Eel into the omelette

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Sardine and seaweed salad

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The salad sesame source of figs?

Sashimi – Perch, shrimp and tuna.

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Perch sashimi was really amazing.

Corn soup with tofu and pike conger

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Nooka liked corn soup.

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Baked sea bass with eggplant, asparagus, paprika, sprout and zucchini.

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Octopus simmered in soy sauce with melon, scallop paste, lotus root, water shield and green beans.

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Grilled Japanese domestic beef. Amaziiiiing. One more bite pleaseeeeee.

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Pickles with spicy fish roes.

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Miso soup.

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Matcha pudding. Had great expectation for this as I am a matcha lover. The taste was too mild for my liking though.

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Roll cake and orange.

Very happy with our dinner!

Verdict: Kaiseki at Hakone Pax Yoshino 9/10. Food were amazing, especially the sashimi and steak. Best steak I have tried so far. Staff were friendly and attentive too.

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The beds were ready when we got back to our room.Think it’s time for bed? Nope! We haven’t try the onsen yet! They do have public onsens available, but if you are shy and don’t want to disclose how big/small/long/short you are, go for their private onsen! It costs 3000 yen for an hour but it’s totally worth it. They only have three private onsen though, so book them as soon as you get there.

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All ready for onsen!

 

We picked the ‘cloud’ room.

 

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It was really comfortable in the onsen at first, washing away my tiredness with the warm water. After 15 minutes or maybe less, I got a little too hot and my face was red like a very ripe tomato. I had to get out of there immediately! I felt like my battery has been drained completely and I couldn’t stop sweating. Had to lie at the rocking chair for 10 minutes before regaining energy to walk back to my room! 😵

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Fell into a very deep sleep that night. Zzz.


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