Genbegawa World Heritage Water Area. This delightful river walk is easilly accessed from Mishima Station’s South Exit. Enjoy particularly hopping along the paving stones that idle down the middle of the stream. In Mishima’s hot and humid summer, toss a coin into the stream for the young kids diving off small bridges to fetch. Making pocket money whilst cooling down!
Japan’s iconic Mt Fuji is actually a very young volcano, only about 10,000 years old. Fuji is a result of the Izu Peninsula, sitting atop the Philippines tectonic plate plate, smashing into the Japanese mainland (Honshu) which sits atop the Eurasian tectonic plate. When you climb Fuji (summer only) you will be surprised to see that rather than being made of solid rock, it more has the appearance of a large pile of lose volcanic scoria. In spring, snow meltwater on Mt Fuji seeps down through this porous volcanic rock to resurface here in front of Mishima Station as crystal clear spring water, feeding the river.
However, during Japan’s rapid post-War industrialization, this area became rich with factories and the stream water became polluted. Shizuoka Prefecture, home to Fuji, is actually Japan’s industrial heartland and home to many world famous consumer brands. Work from the 1990s has restored this beautiful stream to its original pristine condition, earning the walk its World Heritage Water Area status. You can also pay 300 yen to enter Rakujuen Park, where you can see the spring which feeds Genebegawa stream. Rakujuen was originally a holiday home for the 19C Meiji Emperor’s cousin
Mishima is a setting in James Clavell’s epic novel Shogun, and also famous for its Taisha, place of worhship for Japan’s first Shogun Minamoto Yoritomo. Walk Hakone Hachiri strolls along the Genbegawa World Heritage Water Area at the tour‘s conclusion just before Mishima Station.