Where to stay in Hakone, Japan
Hakone is located about an hour south of Tokyo but it feels an entire world away. This is where you go to see Mt Fuji and also to experience an onsen. Its one of the best places to go to get back to nature and away from the big city.
Hakone is a popular destination with Japanese tourists to get away from the city and experience a relaxing weekend at an onsen. The natural beauty of the area is stunning and you can also visit Lake Ashinoko and nearby Mount Fuji.
Hakone is located in the Kanagawa Prefecture and is surrounded by mountains. There are over 40 onsen-yado or hot springs here.
Now this is how you take a break from the busyness of Tokyo! I enjoy Hakone so much I’ve even included it as one of the best day trips from Tokyo but I actually encourage people to spend the night here to really experience the area and see the beautiful scenery.
Hakone is where you go for an authentic Japanese experience whether you want to visit an onsen or stay in a traditional Japanese Ryokan this list of where to stay in Hakone will have you covered.
Check out my list of 31 Landmarks in Japan you won’t want to miss which includes Mount Fuji.
You can reach Hakone by taking the Romancecar from Shinjuku Station in Tokyo. It costs 2300 Yen from Shinjuku to Hakone-Yumoto Station and takes 1.5 hours. This is not covered by your JR Pass.
Overview – Best Places to Stay Hakone Accommodation
• Tonosawa – Best neighborhood in Hakone for your first time
• Gora – Where to stay in Hakone centrally
• Odawara – Where to stay in Hakone for urban life
• Sengokuhara – Best neighborhood in Hakone for families
• Motohakone – Best neighborhood in Hakone for couples
• Kowakudani – Best neighborhood in Hakone for local culture
• Hakone-Yumoto – Where to stay in Hakone on a budget
Best Hotels in Hakone Japan
At a glance, these are the best places to stay in Hakone. They are my highest recommended places to stay in Hakone. These Hakone Japan hotels are the top-rated ones in the city. I also cover off the best places to stay by area in the section below.
1. Hakone Kowakien – This is the best place to stay in Hakone and is located in Gora.
2. Ryokan Hakone Airu – Best Ryokan Hakone
3. Hotel Musashiya – Best Hotel in Hakone located on the lake
4. Ashinoko Port Villa MIRAHAKONE – Hotel Hakone Japan
5. Field Hakone Resort – the Best accommodation Hakone has to offer.
The 7 Best Neighborhoods to Stay in Hakone
In this section I cover off the best neighborhoods to stay in Hakone and why each area is popular so you can find the right neighborhood for you to stay in. I have listed the areas from closest to farthest from Tokyo.
Hakone-Yumoto – Where to stay in Hakone on a budget
Hakone – Yumoto is located centrally in Hakone and the closest stop to Tokyo on the train. This station is the gateway to Hakone and the area around Mount Fuji and you will also find people walking around in traditional Japanese attire here.
When you come out of Hakone-Yumoto station there is a shopping street (shotengai). There are lots of shops and souvenirs and food stalls along this area.
This is the most convenient area to stay as it is the closest to Tokyo.
Where to stay in Hakone Yumoto
1. Ryokan Hakone Airu – This would be my top pick in Hakone Yumoto. The ryokan is fitted with large rooms with private bathrooms and bath and you can see mountain views from the balcony. The accommodation is 4 star with a hot spring and restaurant on the property.
2. Yumoto Fujiya Hotel – The location of this hotel is first rate with easy access to both the Romancecar and the mountain train. This hotel wins for location as it is just a short walk from the train station. This does mean you will have farther to go to Lake Ashi. At Yumoto Fujiya Hotel you will find hot spring baths, sauna and reflexology treatments.
3. Guesthouse Azito is a popular hotel as it is very budget friendly. The Guest House is located a 3 minute bus ride from Hakone Yumoto Station. The property features Japanese style rooms with woven floors. Please note you will share bathroom facilities here.
Things to do in Hakone Yumoto
Visit the Hakone Open Air Museum. This park has artwork that visitors can explore outside. One of the most famous pieces is Niki de Saint Phalle’s “Miss Black Power” is a must see while you are there. There are also many pieces by Japanese artists.
You can walk along the Old Takaido Road which used to be part of an old highway from Tokyo to Kyoto. This cedar lined passage used to be a checkpoint in the Edo Period.
Take the Hakone Tozan Train This train runs between Hakone-Yumoto and Gora. Passengers can enjoy the mountain ride and seasonal nature. The train is famous for its switchback railway, which is needed for the sudden steep inclines.
Tonosawa – Best neighborhood in Hakone for your first time
Tonosawa is the best place to stay in Hakone your first time and my favorite neighborhood. Tonosawa is the next stop after Hakone Yumoto.
This area near the river is beautiful and you will still find a lot of different onsens to try out.
Tonosawa is a small town that really shows the traditional Japanese lifestyle and culture. Plus there are stunning views here – check out the view from the top of Mount Tonomine.
Where to stay in Tonosawa
1. Gyokutei – Situated atop a hill in Hakone, Gyokutei offers an authentic Japanese accommodation with an indoor hot spring bath. Hakoneyumoto Train Station is a leisurely 8-minute walk from the ryokan. All rooms feature tatami (woven-straw) flooring and traditional futon bedding.
2. Kansuiro – Stay near Tonosawa Station This is a beautiful property. And the food and the onsens are spectacular. With a great location this traditional Ryoken should not be missed.
3. Kinnotake Tonosawa – adults only. No kids are allowed here at the Kinnotake Tonosawa which is also located near Tonosawa Station. Spacious rooms come with a wooden floor, a seating area and mountain views. They are fitted with air conditioning, an LCD TV and a refrigerator, while bathrobes and a safe are provided.
Things to do in Tonosawa
Go ziplining through Forest Adventure Hakone
Climb Mount Tonomine and stop at Amidaji Temple half way up
Eat delicious Japanese food like bento boxes or soba noodles in Tonosawa
Visit Odawara Castle
Gora – Where to stay in Hakone close to everything
Gora has some of the best accommodation in Hakone. It is centrally located and one of the most beautiful places in the area. Because it is one of the most popular areas hotels do end up booking out so make your bookings early.
I like the vibe in Gora as well. It was built as an onsen destination so there are plenty of hot springs to visit. Also, because its busy it has a really cool vibe about it with all the tourists – local and foreign.
You’ll also enjoy the beautiful landscapes in this area and the proximity to Lake Aisha.
Where to stay in Gora
1. Hakone Kowakien – Probably the best hotel in all of Hakone. This hotel opened in 2017 and has all of the mod cons like free wifi, air condition, flat screen TV. This property is also well connected and has a free shuttle. Lake Ashi is a 25 minute drive away. They have very helpful staff and a private onsen on site.
2. Emblem Flow Hakone – This place is absolutely perfect and has a very convenient location that is a 7 minute walk from the Hakone Gora Park. This is a three star accommodation but it has a hot tub and ping pong table. Rooms are spacious and the beds are comfortable.
3. Ryokan Yutorelo – an is a beautiful Japanese Inn in Gora. This is a calm, relaxing retreat and it is conveniently located just 2 minutes walk from Nakagora Station on the Hakone Tozan Cable Car. Includes an indoor and outdoor spring baths. Rooms come with free wifi, flat screen TV. There is also a free shuttle service from Gora Station.
4. Ryokan Gora Saryo – another beautiful Japanese Inn in Gora. Saryo is a 20 minute taxi ride from Hakone-yumoto train station and it is well worth the drive. Or you can go to Kamigora Station and it is one minute away. The property is a lush Japanese garden making the location beautiful and quiet. Free wifi, air conditioning and flat screen TV.
Things to do in Gora
Visit Hakone Gora Park to relax and unwind and enjoy the beautiful park. Make sure to check out the flower garden. The park is located 5 minutes from Gora Station.
Take the Hakone Tozan Cable Car to Sounzan and climb 211 meters. This cable car operates from Gora to Sounzan. The cable car line is surrounded by forest, allowing riders to experience the scenery year-round.
Kowakudani – Best neighborhood in Hakone for a local experience
Kowakudani is located near Gora and is a quieter neighborhood good for experiencing local culture.
Here you can stay at on onsen or be more adventurous and hike to a waterfall.
Or do you want to meet a geisha? Take a trip back in time indulging in classic Japanese culture and entertainment with Geishas!
Where to stay in Kowakudani
1. Hostel – Onsen Guest House Tsutaya. I usually do not share hostels but this one is so well rated and in a great location for a great price that I could not add it to the list. Among the facilities at this property are a 24-hour front desk and a shared kitchen, along with free WiFi throughout the property. The hostel has a hot spring bath and luggage storage space.
2. Hakone Yutowa – this hotel is in a great location. The property is set 600 m from Hakone Open-Air Museum, 5 km from Pola Museum and 5 km from Venetian Glass Museum. The property has a hot spring bath, free WiFi throughout the property and a 24-hour front desk. Rooms are spacious and relaxing.
3. Music Manatei Hakone – Manatei Hakone features a hot spring bath and rooms with mountain views. Spa Sois Sage offers beauty treatments and massages. Free WiFi is offered in all areas. Bus stop Jakotsuno is located right beside the property. A great choice for something a bit different.
Things to do in Kowakudani
Take a trip back in time indulging in classic Japanese culture and entertainment with Geishas. This one hour experience is only $22
Enjoy the hot springs and onsen experience
Eat your heart out on ramen!
Sengokuhara – Best neighborhood in Hakone for families
Sengokuhara has some of the most beautiful scenery. One of the best spots to visit is the Sengokuhara Pampas Grass Field. This is the hillside of Daigatake Mountain. It is stunning to look out at the golden fields.
Where to stay in Sengokuhara
1. Field Hakone Resort – Field Hakone Resort is set in Hakone, a 6-minute walk from Sengokuannaishomae Bus Stop. Free WiFi is available throughout the property and free private parking is available on site. Each room at this guest house is air conditioned and is fitted with a flat-screen TV.
2. Ryokan Mount View Hakone – Guests at Hakone Mount View can enjoy rare volcanic hot spring water called nigori-yu. Air-conditioned rooms feature a tatami (woven-straw) floor, on which traditional futon bedding to sleep in.
3. Hakone Hisui – Situated in Hakone, 200 m from Hakone Botanical Garden of Wetlands, Hakone Hisui features accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, a shared lounge and a garden. The rooms include a desk, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom and free wifi.
Things to do in Sengokuhara
Visit the Pola Museum of Art – the building itself is stunning but you can also see works of art from Claude Monet, Pierre Auguste Renoir, Pablo Picasso, and Dali.
Visit the Little Prince Museum. The Little Prince Museum is the world’s only museum devoted to The Little Prince. It was created as part of the worldwide celebration of the birth centennial of author Antoine de Saint-Exupéry.
Visit the Hakone Venetian Glass Museum to see how hand blown glass is made.
Hakone Ropeway – this is a popular way to get to Lake Ashi via gondola. It connect Sounzan Station with Togendai Station at the base of Lake Ashi.
Motohakone – Best neighborhood in Hakone for couples
Motohakone is the area around the lake and it has some great accommodation for your stay in Hakone.
This is a laid back, relaxed area to stay with stunning views of Mount Fuji.
Even if you don’t stay in this area will you probably end up here to see Hakone Shrine and Lake Ashi.
Where to stay in Motohakone
1. Hotel Musashiya – Boasting hot spring baths that look out to picturesque Lake Ashi in Hakone, Hotel Musashiya is located just a 1-minute walk from the port for sightseeing lake cruises. Guests can enjoy the views of Laku Ashi or Mount Hakone Gairinzan from the room. Free Wi-Fi is provided in the lobby
2. Ashinoko Port Villa MIRAHAKONE – Situated in Hakone, Ashinoko Port Villa MIRAHAKONE features a restaurant, lake views and free WiFi, less than 1 km from Hakone Shrine and a 17-minute walk from Hakone Checkpoint. All units here are air-conditioned and feature a flat-screen TV, a living room with a sofa, a well-equipped kitchen and a private bathroom with a shower.
3. Hananoyado Fukuya – All rooms have a flat-screen TV. Certain rooms feature a seating area where you can relax. The rooms are equipped with a private bathroom equipped with a bath and shower. Featuring free WiFi and a hot spring bath, Hananoyado Fukuya offers accommodation in Hakone. Free private parking is available on site.
Things to do in Motohakone
Visit Hakone Jinjya Heiwa-no-Torii along the lakefront of Lake Ashi
Take a pirate boat cruise around the lake for 30 minutes. It only costs $10!
Visit Hakone Shrine – these are views of the lake and Mount Fuji in the background.
Visit Chureito Pagoda for the ultimate photo op of this 5 story pagoda with Mount Fuji in the background.
Conclusion – Where to stay in Hakone
In all honesty, you do not want to miss the serenity and beauty of Hakone. Visiting Hakone is completely different than anywhere else in Japan.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this list of the best hotels in Hakone and learning about the different areas and where to stay in Hakone.
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