Lake Kawaguchi and Mt. Fuji access guide and the sample itineraries

The Chuo line between Takao and Otsuki and Chuo Express Way are closed due to the damage by the typhoon on October 13th, 2019. Chuo line segment is located between Shijuku and Kofu. The limited express Azusa, Kaiji and Fuji Excursion are suspended until the completion of the repair. The restoration will be done by the end of October. You cannot get Kawaguchiko from Shinjuku by a train at this point. The express bus runs but it takes a detour. The trip time is much longer and the number of trips are fewer than usual.

Mt. Fuji from the shore of Lake Kawaguchi

Mt. Fuji is one of most popular spots. Because it is the highest mountain in Japan and very accessible from Tokyo. It is about 2 hours away from Shinjuku, Tokyo by the train or the express bus. You can visit there as a day trip from Tokyo easily.

In this post, I would like to show you several trip plan to Fuji Five Lakes area which includes Mt. Fuji 5th station. When you go to Mt. Fuji, Lake Kawaguchi (Kawaguchiko) is the gateway. I also will show you the access to Lake Kawaguchi.

Access to Lake Kawaguchi and Fujisan area

Lake Kawaguchi (Kawaguchiko) is the hub in this area. Most buses depart from Kawaguchiko station. You can get there by either the train or the express bus. I will show you the acesse route to Kawaguchiko first of all.

Access to Lake Kawaguchi from Tokyo

Access routes to Mt. Fuji (click to view large)

There are many routes available to get Lake Kawaguchi but these are mostly by the express bus. If you take the train, you will depart from Shinjuku or Tokyo.

Before choosing the route, you have to make sure which pass you will use or do not use any passes. The route is varied by the pass. I would like to show you the best and most cost efficient way.

Train access to Kawaguchiko (Lake Kawaguchi) from Shinjuku via Otsuki by JR Pass or JR East Pass

You may use JR Pass or JR East Pass in your trip. In this case, the limited express Fuji Kaiyu (Fuji Excursion) is the best choice. This train takes you to Kawaguchiko directly. There is only two scheduled round trips a day. And this train has been very popular and hard to book a seat. But on the some specific dates, there is one or two extra trips. Please find the timetable in JR East official site in the link below:

JR East official site – the timetable

When you cannot take this train, you can take the limited express Azusa or Kaiji between Shinjuku and Otsuki. And you have to change the trains at Otsuki and take Fuji Kyuko Railway to Kawaguchiko.

Fuji Kyuko Railway between Otsuki and Kawaguchiko is not covered by either JR pass or JR East Pass. Please find the fare for Otsuki to/from Kawaguchiko in Fuji Kyuko Railway official site:

Fuji Kyuko Railway official site

Fuji Kyuko railway ticket can be purchased at some JR station. When you book a seat for the limited express train from Shinjuku to Kawaguchiko or Otsuki by JR pass or JR East pass, you may ask the staff to purchase a ticket for Fuji Kyuko Railway. You may be able to buy it. If you cannot, you can purchase it at Otsuki station or pay when you exit Kawaguchiko station or pay to the conductor on board.

The typical trip schedule is the following:

Shinjuku (1 hour by the limited express Azusa or Kaiji) Otsuki (50 minutes by the limited express train / 60 minutes by the local train) Kawaguchiko

The train access to Kawaguchiko (Lake Kawaguchi) from Shinjuku via Otsuki by Tokyo Wide Pass

You can take same route as JR Pass and JR East Pass above. But Tokyo Wide Pass covers all the way to Kawaguchiko which includes Fuji Kyuko Railway segment between Otsuki and Kawaguchiko. The extra cost is not required to take Fuji Kyuko Railway.

Access to Lake Kawaguchi from many locations in Tokyo by bus

Actually the express bus is most convenient way. The express bus depart from Shinjuku, Shibuya, Tokyo, and both Haneda and Narita airports. It is faster than train. And the biggest benefit by the express bus is direct transfer. If you take a train, you have to change the trains at Otsuki. But if you take the express bus, you can get Kawaguchiko (Lake Kawaguchi) station, Fujisan station, Fuji-Q Highland, even Fuji 5th station (seasonal), Oshino-Hakkai and Lake Yamanaka directly.

Typical trip schedule is the following:

Shinjuku (1 hour 45 minutes by Express Bus) Kawaguchiko

Seasonally you can get 5th station directly too. If you do not intend to use any train passes, simply pay regular fare to take express bus. Any rail passes do not cover this express bus. You can find the information in Fujikyu Bus official site:

Fujikyu Bus – Highway Bus Information

Access to Lake Kawaguchi from Hakone by bus

If you intend to visit Lake Kawaguchi before/after visiting Hakone, you can catch the bus between Kawaguchiko station, Fuji-Q Highland, Fujisan station, Gotemba station and Gotemba Premium Outlet. Please see the link below to find more information:

You may find some information about Hakone in the link below:

Access from Osaka, Kyoto and Nagoya. How to add Lake Kawaguchi on the way to Tokyo

The gateway to Lake Kawaguchi area from Osaka, Kyoto and Nagoya is Mishima. You can catch the express bus which is called Mishima/Kawaguchiko Liner Express Bus between Mishima and Lake Kawaguchi, Fuji-Q Highland, Fujisan station. Please see the link below to find the information about the bus from Mishima.

Fujikyu Bus – Highway Bus Information

You can get Mishima by the Shinkansen from Nagoya, Kyoto and Shin-Osaka. Some Hikari which is the second fastest train stop at Mishima. Please check the timetable of the Shinkansen in the link below:

JR Central official site – The Tokaido and the Sanyo Shinkansen timetable

Please refer the post below to find some more information about Mishima station. You can find the information about the transfer between the Shinkansen and the bus to Kawaguchiko:

Sample itineraries to visit Mt. Fuji from Lake Kawaguchi to Lake Kawaguchi.

Sightseeing spots in Fuji Five Lakes area (Click to view large)

I would like to show you the sample itinerary of Mt. Fuji part only. This sample itinerary is starting from Lake Kawaguchi and finishing at Lake Kawaguchi. You can add one of these sample itineraries on the access route from Tokyo to Lake Kawaguchi or other cities to Lake Kawaguchi.

Lake Kawaguchi and 5th station one day plan

Mt. Fuji and Chureito Pagoda (C) Fujiyoshida City / JNTO

This itinerary includes most popular spots around Lake Kawaguchi area.

Kawaguchiko (Trip time 55 minutes by bus) 5th station

Enjoy mountain air in the middle of Mt. Fuji (1 hour)

5th station (Trip time 55 minutes by bus) Kawaguchiko

Lunch time around Kawaguchiko station

Kawaguchiko (Trip time 15 minutes by Fuji Kyuko Railway train) Shimo-Yoshida

Visit Arakura Fuji Sengen shrine, Chureito Pagoda (1 hour)

Shimo-Yoshida (Trip time 15 minutes by Fuji Kyuko Railway train) Kawaguchiko

Visit Mt. Tenjo Ropeway (Kachi Kachi Yama Ropeway) and/or Cruise on Lake Kawaguchi
*If you start this trip in very early morning, you may visit both.

Lake Kawaguchi and Shibazakura venue one day plan

Fuji Shibazakura Festival (C) Akira Okada / JNTO

Fuji Shibazakura Festival is hold from mid April to late May. Shibazakura (pink moss flower) cover the field and Mt. Fuji can be seen behind this amazing pink field. You can find more information in the official site:

Fuji Shibazakura Festival official site

Try to get Shibazakura venue to avoid congestion. This festival is very popular and still getting popular year by year.

Kawaguchiko (Trip time 30 minutes by Shibazakura Liner shuttle bus or 50 minutes by regular bus) Fuji Shibazakura venue

Enjoy Shibazakura Festival (2 hours)
*It usually takes 60 to 90 minutes to see this festival. But you can spend more if you like. And also there are lots of food stands in the venue. These stands offer many kinds of local food. You can take lunch before you leave.
*In the period of this festival, combo ticket which includes round trip bus fare and admission is sold around 2,000 yen. You can purchase it at Kawaguchiko station.
*If you intend to take the express bus from Shinjuku, some of buses are running to Shibazakura venue directly.

Fuji Shibazakura venue (Trip time 30 minutes by Shibazakura Liner shuttle bus or 50 minutes by regular bus) Kawaguchiko

Visit Mt. Tenjo Ropeway (Kachi Kachi Yama Ropeway) and/or Cruise on Lake Kawaguchi
*If you start this trip in very early morning, you may visit both.

You may visit Arakura Fuji Sengen shrine, Chureito Pagoda instead.

Kawaguchiko (Trip time 15 minutes by Fuji Kyuko Railway train) Shimo-Yoshida

Stay for one hour to visit shrine.

Shimo-Yoshida (Trip time 15 minutes by Fuji Kyuko Railway train) Kawaguchiko

If you intend to take a train, you can go back to Tokyo via Otsuki from Shimo-Yoshida. You do not need to go back to Kawaguchiko.

Shibazakura Festival and 5th station one day plan

Try to get Shibazakura venue to avoid congestion. This festival is very popular and still getting popular year by year.

Kawaguchiko (Trip time 30 minutes by Shibazakura Liner shuttle bus or 50 minutes by regular bus) Fuji Shibazakura venue

Enjoy Shibazakura Festival (2 hours)
*It usually takes 60 to 90 minutes to see this festival. But you can spend more if you like. And also there are lots of food stands in the venue. These stands offer many kinds of local food. You can take lunch before you leave. Otherwise you have a lunch time at Kawaguchiko station.
*In the period of this festival, combo ticket which includes round trip bus fare and admission is sold around 2,000 yen. You can purchase it at Kawaguchiko station.
*If you intend to take the express bus from Shinjuku, some of buses are running to Shibazakura venue directly.

Fuji Shibazakura venue (Trip time 30 minutes by Shibazakura Liner shuttle bus or 50 minutes by regular bus) Kawaguchiko (Trip time 55 minutes by bus) 5th station

Enjoy mountain air in the middle of Mt. Fuji (1 hour)

5th station (Trip time 55 minutes by bus) Kawaguchiko

5th station and Fuji-Q highland one day plan

Fuji-Q Highland is located just by the station.

Kawaguchiko (Trip time 55 minutes by bus) 5th station

Enjoy mountain air in the middle of Mt. Fuji (1 hour)

5th station (Trip time 55 minutes by bus) Kawaguchiko (Trip time 3 minutes by Fuji Kyuko Railway train) Fuji-Q Highland

Enjoy Fuji-Q Highland as much as you want. You can have lunch time in either Kawaguchiko or Fuji-Q Highland.

Fuji-Q Highland (Trip time 3 minutes by Fuji Kyuko Railway train) Kawaguchiko

If you intend to take a train, you can go back to Tokyo via Otsuki from Fuji-Q Highland. You do not need to go back to Kawaguchiko.

Mt Fuji overnight 2 days plan

Oshino Hakkai (C) JNTO

If you can spend 2 days, you can visit most of places in Lake Kawaguchi and surrounding area.

Day 1

Kawaguchiko (Trip time 30 minutes by Shibazakura Liner shuttle bus or 50 minutes by regular bus) Fuji Shibazakura venue

Enjoy Shibazakura Festival (2 hours)

Fuji Shibazakura venue (Trip time 30 minutes by Shibazakura Liner shuttle bus or 50 minutes by regular bus) Kawaguchiko

If you do not visit in spring season, you may visit Oshino-Hakkai instead.

Kawaguchiko (Trip time 25 minutes by regular bus) Oshino-Hakkai

Enjoy walking in Oshino-Hakkai (1.5 to 2 hours)

Oshino-Hakkai (Trip time 25 minutes by regular bus) Kawaguchiko

Lunch time around Kawaguchiko station

Kawaguchiko (Trip time 15 minutes by Fuji Kyuko Railway train) Shimo-Yoshida

Visit Arakura Fuji Sengen shrine, Chureito Pagoda (1 hour)

Shimo-Yoshida (Trip time 15 minutes by Fuji Kyuko Railway train) Kawaguchiko

Visit Mt. Tenjo Ropeway (Kachi Kachi Yama Ropeway) and/or Cruise on Lake Kawaguchi

Stay in Lake Kawaguchi

Day 2

Kawaguchiko (Trip time 55 minutes by bus) 5th station

Enjoy mountain air in the middle of Mt. Fuji (1 hour)

5th station (Trip time 55 minutes by bus) Kawaguchiko (Trip time 3 minutes by Fuji Kyuko Railway train) Fuji-Q Highland

Enjoy Fuji-Q Highland as much as you want. You can have lunch time in either Kawaguchiko or Fuji-Q Highland.

Fuji-Q Highland (Trip time 3 minutes by Fuji Kyuko Railway train) Kawaguchiko

If you intend to take a train, you can go back to Tokyo via Otsuki from Fuji-Q Highland. You do not need to go back to Kawaguchiko.

If you are not interested in Fuji-Q Highland, you can visit museum and park around Lake Kawaguchi. You may take Fujikyu bus to visit various places around Fuji Five Lake. Please find some information in the link below:

Fuji Kyuko Bus official site – Route bus information

I hope this post helps you to build your trip plan to Lake Kawaguchi and Mt. Fuji are.

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