Goodbye Tokyo, Hello Nikko!

Our last morning in Tokyo…:(

Here’s an idea of the type of breakfast we were having each morning at the Super Hotel in Tokyo…

It was a pretty crazy morning trying to make train connections. We literally ended up getting on our train to Nikko with only 30 seconds to spare! Running through crowded subway stations with full packs on both our backs and our chests certainly got the heart rate up!

How good are the Shinkansen trains?!! We seriously need some of these on Australia! So fast and really comfortable.

The reason we were rushing around so much was to give us enough time in Nikko to catch a bus up to the Senjogahara plateau and do a hike to Yumoto Onsen, making sure we didn’t miss the last bus back to Nikko.

In the end it all worked out well, and we started the walk in the early afternoon. Not a very long or necessarily difficult walk, it took us past some beautiful natural features including Ryuzu falls, the plateau itself, Yudaki falls, and lake Yunoko, finishing at Yumoto Onsen, a renowned hot spring resort (a full write up of the hike can be found here).

Of course we happened to choose a day when every single school kid in the district was on an excursion to the national park, so we ended up having rather staccato, but amusing, conversations constituting many ‘hellos’ from the kids, and ‘konnichiwas’ from us in return!

Ryuzu Falls

Yudaki Falls

Lake Yunoko

We stopped by the town of Chuzenjiko on our way back and had a quick look at Kegon falls. Very impressive!!

Kegon Falls

We ended up getting back to Nikko in time to visit an awesome little restaurant called Hippari Dako, recommended in all the guides as having the best yakitori. And they were right! Just enough charcoal on the edges, drizzled with a really tasty soy sauce and served with soba noodles and a generous portion of rice. Just to add to the experience, the walls of the restaurant are completely covered with little notes from previous patrons, extolling the virtues and all round general awesomeness of the establishment!

The place we’re staying at is called the Turtle Inn. Our first night in a proper Japanese room, complete with tatami mats and futon beds!