Back at Kawaguchiko station from Oshino Hakkai, we boarded a sight seeing bus to visit other attractions around Kawaguchiko. There are 3 different sightseeing routes to choose from, either the ‘Red Line‘, ‘Green Line‘ or ‘Blue Line‘. Bus fare for these sightseeing routes, can be paid by cash or pre-paid (Icoca) card or alternatively purchase an unlimited 2-days bus pass for ¥1,500 which includes all three routes. Please note these 3 routes, do not include Oshino Hakkai.
Along the ‘red line’ route, we intend to visit a couple of attractions namely Oishi Park, Maple Corridor and Pleasure Cruise/Ropeway. From Kawaguchiko bus station, Oishi Park (close to Natural Living Center) is the furthest attraction on the ‘red line’ route at stop #22. The return fare cost ¥960 with stops along the way factored in. We stopped at Maple Corridor on the way back from Oishi Park. Although the ‘red line’ route is the shortest of the three, it is impossible to visit all 22 attractions in a day, what else to cover the ‘green’ & ‘blue’ lines as well.
Oishi Park (stop #22) is located on the northern shore of Lake Kawaguchiko. It is a popular scenic spot where you can get panoramic views of Lake Kawaguchiko and Mt. Fuji. The park features a 350 meter walking path with seasonal flowers planted along the shore promenade. The park is also home to the Natural Living Center which has a souvenir shop and a cafe.
Past midday, part of the clouds shrouding Mt Fuji lifted and we were able to see the majestic Mt Fuji. Although our pictures of Mt Fuji wasn’t as clear, sharp and crisp as we would like to, the fact we were able to see it, was stunning. Honestly, it would have been a disappointment if we weren’t able to see Mt Fuji.
Natural Living Center
The Natural Living Center is just before Oishi Park. Here one can try making fruit jam and an all-you-can-eat cherry & blueberry picking activity. There are many food and fragrance related products using blueberry sold here. At the cafe, you can enjoy a cup of coffee and try the blueberry ice cream. The ‘red line‘ bus will pick-up & drop-off passengers for stop #22 in-front of this center.
The Maple Corridor is a beautiful place to view red autumn foliage. By the shores of Lake Kawaguchiko, it faces Mt Fuji. Taking the ‘red line’ bus, this will be stop #19 which is also the stop for Itchiku Kubota Art Museum. The estimated bus fare to Kawaguchiko station is ¥380 one-way and the ride will take about 25 minutes.
The Maple Corridor is a walkway along a wide storm water drain lined with over 60 maple trees. The trees with red, yellow, orange and a small patch of green leaves display stunning colours. Visitors can stroll alongside the 150m walkway while taking in the fresh cool air. At the other end, both sides of the walkway are connected by a bridge, enabling you to return to your starting point the opposite side. Having walked a complete loop, visitors are directed to stalls selling handmade Japanese ceramics, woodcraft and traditional Japanese street food. The Maple Corridor can also be enjoyed after dark as the autumn trees are lit up after sunset till 10 pm every night during autumn.
I would consider the visit to Maple Corridor as the highlight of our visit to Japan. Although we have been to countries with four seasons, this is the first time we are able to see red autumn leaves. Otherwise, we have all the time return home before the autumn foliage to avoid the drop in temperature.
The shades of autumn foliage at Maple Corridor, Kawaguchiko.