Hakone Hachiri, now a Japan Heritage Area

 

Hakone Hachiri has just been declared a Japan Heritage Area. Hachiri literally means 8 Li, a distance of approximately 30 kilometers. It refers to the stretch of the old Tokaido between Odawara (Tokaido Sation #9) and Mishima (Station #11), via Hakone (Station #10). During the Edo Period this stretch was a two day walk over some very mountainous terrain, but rewarded by spectacular views of Mt Fuji, Ashinoko Lake, and the Pacific Ocean. Some parts of this stretch of Tokaido have been preserved and are enjoyed by many visitors today.

HIghlights of Hakone Hachiri include Amazake Teahouse, Cedar Avenue, Hakone Checkpoint, Yamanaka Castle Ruins, and Mishima Taisha. Enjoy Hakone Hachiri Tour.

Hakone Hachiri is also a popular Japanese folk song. Check out these delightful versions:

Here’s a translation of the lyrics:

 

Hakone Mountains hard to cross,
The mighty fortress lies right here,
High up in the ranges, deepest in the dales,
Rising in front, peaking in the rear,
Oh, clouds around the tops, oh, mist fills the vales,
How dark are the cedar woods, huge trees in rows and rows,
See, the narrow winding lane that shines with moss,
Only the strongest man can keep the whole fortress from foes,
Bravest warriors who go on the road
Might have trod the rocks and ranges,
Trampling, climbing all out of the way,
Was it in this way they traveled in those days?

Hakone Mountains hard to cross,
The mighty fortress lies right here,
High up in the ranges, deepest in the dales,
Rising in front, peaking in the rear,
Oh, clouds around the tops, oh, mist fills the vales,
How dark are the cedar woods, huge trees in rows and rows,
See, the narrow winding lane that shines with moss,
Only the strongest man can keep the whole fortress from foes,
Bravest hunters who chase in the hills
With their hunting guns on their shoulders,
Trampling, climbing all out of the way,
Was it in this way they hunted in those days?

 

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