Last weekend for our anniversary we decided to visit Hakone, an area known for hot springs and its active volcano (which will possibly erupt any day now…). I know that may same like a strange choice of local, but Chad loves hot springs and I was ready to have a getaway with pretty scenery. Little did I know that I was in for some serious uphill climbing before the relaxing part would come! Lunch after arriving in Hakone: Tempura Soba Set So in the above picture, you can see a cable car that could take you up the mountain to your hotel or ryokan (Japanese style inn) of choice. Chad mistakenly thought taking the cable car was expensive, so we proceeded on foot. Later, after I almost died from climbing, we found out that the cable car was only around 170 yen… I handled this very gracefully because I am perfect. (I actually almost cried haha.) This was taken about a quarter of the way up, before I realized that we were only a quarter of the way up. Finally, we arrived at our ryokan. It was pretty creepy to be honest, but the room was nice enough. We were able to relax and be together, and that was the most important thing. Well, besides dinner. Dinner, dinner, dinner. Where could we find dinner? It turned out that nearly the entire area around us had absolutely no restaurants or shops or anything. We found one place that was expensive, and several others that were closed, so we decided to go all the way back down to the station to see if any restaurants were open down there. I was super tired, but I tried to be positive and happy (and that part really is true). When we got to the station, everything that had been open earlier had closed. The time being only 7:00, we started to feel a bit defeated. Fortunately, we were able to make the last cable car of the day (which was at 7:05!), and we headed back up to the one expensive restaurant we had seen that was thankfully still open. I ordered a tempura set (I know, second one of the day! But it looked better than the other options). Above were some of the sides: delicious tofu, gel fish (which I thought had a strange texture and passed along to Chad), and tsukemono (pickled vegetables). Chad ordered a steak meal.Here’s my tempura set. It was really nice. Once our bellies were full, we headed back to the hotel where Chad enjoyed the hot springs while I relaxed in our room before bed.The next day, we woke up for our breakfast at our hotel. Above you can see dried horse mackerel being reheated on a little grill. Here is the list of everything included in our breakfast. This is our hotel from the outside. I don’t know if this gives you a clear enough idea of how steep our climb up was, but I get sore just looking at it. After descending the mountain again, we headed to the Hakone Open Air Museum, which was my favorite part of our trip. There are loads of sculptures outside, as well as a few inside exhibits. This exhibit showed music through bamboo. It was really neat. Light, shadows and sound.From the other side… A labyrinth! I really enjoyed the indoor Picasso exhibit–it reminded me of when we went to the Picasso museum in Barcelona years ago. Picasso had a really interesting life! Fortunately there was a foot bath located about halfway through the museum.This was a Symphony of Glass tower. I wasn’t super psyched to climb it, but it was really pretty in the end. The view from the top of the tower. Pretty glass inside.
Chad and I both really loved the Open Air Museum. We had a convenient store lunch afterwards on a bench outside, hopped on a train, and headed home to relax some more. The entire time, no matter how physically tired I got, I felt immensely thankful that I was able to celebrate our 7th wedding anniversary together. There is no one for me like my Chad, who lifts me up and loves me always.
I hope you enjoyed seeing pictures from our little weekend getaway, and that you’ve been able to get some relaxing in yourself!