Mount Mitake (御岳山)

Yesterday was yet another public holiday in Japan (Labor Thanksgiving Day) so making most of the day (despite the fact that it was cold and dreary) Justine, Emma and I decided to go to Mount Mitake.

I feel like I have the best of both worlds being stationed in Tokyo as I am in the middle of the city, yet can escape to the wilderness just by hopping on a train.  And this was a much needed escape.

Mount Mitake is a little out of the city – it took nearly 2 and a half hours to get there but was certainly well worth it just to catch a glimpse of the autumn leaves or 紅葉. I never really thought I was missing anything not having a proper autumn season in Sydney. But after coming here and seeing the amazing shades of colours that the leaves gradually turn into, it is definitely going to be something I will miss for sure when I go home.

Starting off the day right with some dango and then hopping on the cable car up the mountain

It was a pretty clear day, despite the lack of sun, so the view from the first lookout point was amazing – we could see all the way to the centre of Tokyo and spotted Tokyo Skytree in the distance.

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It was certainly a cold day – I think it dropped close to 2 degrees at some point during the day. However, walking through the trees, taking in the fresh air and being one of the few people around was absolutely refreshing.

We walked on a trail near a creek and came across this small waterfall. The photos (taken with my old phone camera  and not my normal camera because I prioritised my warmth, as I had limited space in my backpack!) do not do justice to how beautiful this place is.

On our way back, we stopped off for a late lunch and were looked after by the most adorable older ladies at the restaurant who were determined to speak as much English as they could.

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A restaurant with a view!

What a great day spent with great friends; I have never been much of an outdoor person, but I have been loving getting out of the city and exploring the beautiful nature that Japan has to offer.

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