Oshino Hakkai

A beautiful collection of eight ponds are scattered around Oshino Hakkai, each with its very own story to tell. Hakkai, or “Eight Seas,” refers to the eight pools of water that are the main attraction at Oshino Hakkai. Bridges and pathways lead you around and over these tranquil ponds. The traditional thatched roof buildings, slowly spinning water wheels, and amazing view of Mt. Fuji all transport you to another era.

Oshino Hakkai is located in Shibokusa, Oshino-mura, Minamitsuru-gun, Yamanashi-ken. It can be accessed by train and then bus. The closest train station is Fujisan Station on the Fuji Kyuko Line. From there, a 20-minute bus ride will take you to Oshino Hakkai Iriguchi bus stop, which is just a five-minute walk to the main entrance. If you prefer to travel by car, it is a 10-minute drive from Yamanakako Interchange.

The main attraction of Oshino Hakkai is its eight ponds, which are filled by melted snow that has run down from Mt. Fuji. These ponds are not only visually stunning but also have a rich history. They are the result of historic eruptions and intense volcanic activity. Some of the ponds are fed by an underground reservoir and are renowned for their mineral-rich spring water. In fact, the water in Waku Pond is so clear and clean that in 1985, the Ministry of the Environment ranked it among some of the nation’s best spring water.

Each pond at Oshino Hakkai has its own unique characteristics and significance. One of the ponds, called Oike, is famous for its teeming population of koi fish. These colorful fish add vibrancy and life to the pond, creating a picturesque scene. Another pond, called Choshi, is known for its crystal-clear water and is often used for water supply in the area. The ponds of Oshino Hakkai not only provide a serene and peaceful atmosphere but also serve practical purposes for the local community.

Visiting Oshino Hakkai is a treat no matter what time of year you go. The village is surrounded by evergreen trees, which are interspersed with maple trees that turn a gorgeous amber in the autumn months. During the winter, layers of snow cover the village, adding a magical quality to the already tranquil surroundings. However, it is worth noting that Oshino Hakkai is a popular destination and can get quite busy, especially during peak seasons. Despite the crowds, the peacefulness of the area persists.

In addition to the natural beauty of the ponds and the surrounding landscape, Oshino Hakkai offers various facilities for visitors to enjoy. The gift shop, which is seemingly as large as the village itself, sells a wide variety of gifts and souvenirs, as well as snacks. Many of the items available are adorned with Mt. Fuji motifs, allowing visitors to take a piece of the iconic mountain home with them. There is also a small coffee and ice cream stall inside the shop, perfect for a quick refreshment break.

When it comes to local specialties, Oshino Hakkai does not disappoint. The village is known for its tofu topped with local miso-infused pickles, a savory and flavorful dish. Another local delicacy is kusamochi, a pounded rice cake that is green due to the addition of mugwort, an aromatic plant grown in the area. The rice cake is filled with a sweet red bean paste and is a delicious variation of this common Japanese treat. These local specialties are a must-try for food enthusiasts and provide a taste of the region’s culinary traditions.

In conclusion, Oshino Hakkai is a picturesque destination that offers a unique and tranquil experience. Its eight ponds, fed by melted snow from Mt. Fuji, provide a serene atmosphere and stunning views. The village itself, with its traditional thatched roof buildings and slowly spinning water wheels, transports visitors to another era. Whether you visit in the autumn to see the maple trees in their vibrant colors or in the winter to experience the magical snow-covered landscape, Oshino Hakkai is a place of beauty and tranquility. Don’t forget to explore the gift shop and try some of the local specialties to complete your visit to this charming village.

Address And Maps Location:

Shibokusa, Oshino-mura, Minamitsuru-gun, Yamanashi-ken

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