The popular ropeway which invites you to another world at 1,327m above sea level
Mt. Komagatake is the central cone located in the middle of the Hakone caldera, and connecting to it is the 1800m-long Hakone Komagatake Ropeway. Going up at a steep angle, a grand landscape opens up in front of your eyes which includes Lake Ashi, the outer rim of the Hakone crater and then Mt. Fuji. The peak is the habitat for flowers which include rhododendron and Hakone aconite. It’s also enjoyable to view such highland flora. Since the altitude at the peak station building is high, the temperature is lower than that down at ground level, so it is advised to wear something like a light jacket. Also temperatures fall below zero even during days in winter, so please wear thick clothing.
Hakone-Mototsumiya Shrine at the peak is a prominent power spot in Japan
A 3-minute walk away from the peak station for the Komagatake Ropeway, you will come across the rear shrine for Hakone Shrine, Hakone-Mototsumiya Shrine. Mt. Komagatake which is seen as a holy mountain to the north was once worshiped as such. Even now, it is popular as a power spot. Hakone-Mototsumiya doesn’t have a honden main hall, but opening the doors of the haiden front shrine will have you looking up at the front of the sacred mountain. The construction of the current incarnation of Hakone Shrine took place in the middle of the Nara Era. But even before then, the mountain was treated as holy, so it is said that this was the beginning for Hakone Shrine. When worshiping at Kuzuryu and Hakone Shrines, you will want to make that extra trip to Hakone-Mototsumiya.
Enjoy the seasonal highland flora on that hike
Admiring the grand panoramic view from the peak is one way to enjoy yourself, but if you have time, how about taking a hike from the peak? The hiking course that takes you toward Ohwakudani Station via the sacred mountain that is Hakone’s highest peak has a total length of 3.5km and takes around 2 hours and 10 minutes to navigate. Highland flora make their home around the peak and you can enjoy the grass and plants there all throughout the year. There is also another course that will get you to Ohwakudani Station that passes by Mt. Souunzan which is 3.2km long and takes about 2 hours. Since both courses are liable to close with any warnings of volcanic activity from Mt. Hakone, it is strongly recommended to check the homepage beforehand.