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Mt. Fuji Shibazakura Trip 2016

* Review by studying abroad students from Thailand

This trip we booked through a tour of Willer. We started this trip at Umeda Sky building where Willer’s bus departs. Willer’s bus terminal is inside of the building with various facilities, sitting quite clean and quiet. At the terminal, a sign indicates that vehicles approaching platforms yet. This is why we do not have to stand on it. We took Bus No. K252 depart from Osaka to Shinjuku Tokyo. We went to the bus and told our name to a staff and got the number of seats.

We took the seat type "Relax Wide". The position of chairs were quite well, in every seat have curtains and blanket services and the seat can adjust the tilt angle of the backrest cushion fully. The travelling of Japanese night bus has a break time quite frequently therefore do not have to worry about the toilet, and eating. When the driver stops the bus, he will write departure time to inform passengers of the time to back to the bus on time.
Note: You should remember the color and number of the bus. There are many bus companies stopping at the parking.
After that, the bus brought us in front of Shinjuku Station at 7:00, but we need to take a train to the car park at Ikebukuro Sunshine bus terminal by passenger train, JR (Yamanote) to Ikebukuro Station, then take about 15 minutes to get there by walk.

After we arrived at the parking spot, Willer’s guide welcomed and gave us leaflets information of trips Fuji Shibazakura, consisting of all four destination.

1. Lake Kawaguchi Excursion Ship En Soleil.
2. Fuji Shibazakura Festival.
3. Strawberry Picking.
4. Oshino Hakkai (Springs of Mt. Fuji).
The bus traveled to Lake Kawaguchi. It took an hour to get there.

We got a ride on the excursion ship around the lake Kawaguchi. The atmosphere around the lake was very good for travel in this month because there was surrounded by the cherry blossom trees (Sakura). On the ship you can see Mt. Fuji but in this trip it had a lot of cloud so we couldn’t see the Mt. fuji. Mt. Fuji is the highest mountain in Japan and considered a symbol of Japan.

After that, it did not take long to arrive at Pink Moss Festival or local name "Shibazakura festival". The area includes a panoramic vantage point, food court and souvenir. Because we came to this festival at the first day, it had the Pink Moss only 20%, which is expected to be in full bloom in the next two weeks. (About May)

Food and souvenirs at Shibazakura 2016.

Fujiyama Cookie (Mt.Fuji)
One box has two flavors, green tea and Sakura. Top of cookies are coated by white chocolate. Cookies look like a really lovely Mount Fuji. Sakura flavor with cherry blossoms on was a really delicious and sweet.

Fujiyama Cookie  (Mt.Fuji)

Fujisan Miniature Crunch Chocolates
The cornflake crispy coated with chocolate. Shaped like Mount Fuji, the top is coated with white chocolate. Chocolate milk tastes sweeter and is very easy to eat. The package of pieces looks cute for a gift from Yamanashi.

Fujisan  Miniature Crunch Chocolates

Shibazakura no Hana (Mochi)
Mochi chewy pastry dough with a sweet smell of sugar. The package is Japanese style that is suitable for a souvenir from Shibazakura festival. This sweet can’t be kept for long. If you buy it, you should eat or make a gift immediately.

Shibazakura no Hana (Mochi)
Sakura no Sweet Cookie
Cookie looks simple but the feature is that letters and pictures are printed on the cookies. One box has 3 pattern: floral, Mt. Fuji and Shibazakura Festival name. The taste is very sweet and cookies are crisp and perfect for gift to friends.
Sakura no Sweet Cookie

Fujisan Udon
Udon noodles served with Fujisan Fried Fish Paste.
Fujisan Udon
Local-style udon noodles often eaten around Fujiyoshida, Yamanashi Prefecture. Firm, and resilient noodles in vegetable soup.
Soba (Tempura)
Buckwheat soba, served with tempura vegetables and shrimp. The soup’s intense salty flavor was good.
Soba (Tempura)
Boiled Chicken Giblet Stew + Rice with Mixed grains
Set chicken stew with grains rice, stewed chicken Giblet Stew flavor.
Boiled Chicken Giblet Stew + Rice with  Mixed grains

After lunch we traveled to the strawberry farm and had time to pick strawberries about 45 minutes with condensed milk. Scissors for each person and staff showed how to pick up and eaat strawberries.

The last destination was Oshino Hakkai (Springs of Mt. Fuji), the village of Fuji mineral water flows. This place had a lot of souvenirs, and the cherry trees were in bloom. If you like Japanese-style village atmosphere, this place is one of the choices to visit.

After that, we traveled back to the car park at Ikebukuro Sunshine bus terminal at 19:00 and we took a train to the car park at Shinjuku Expressway Bus Terminal.

In the return trip, we continued to use the bus service of Willer. The car park was the four floor at parking building of Shinjuku Expressway Bus Terminal. We took the Bus no. S122 back to Kyoto. The seat of this bus, called New Premium, was very big and comfortable and have power plug for charging and blanket serviced with high degrees in the tilt of the seat. There were curtains surrounding seats that make sense to privacy thus, we felt a deep sleep throughout the way back to Kyoto. We arrived at Kyoto Station at 5.25 AM.

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