Ubuya – Experience a Japanese ryokan at its best

Kozantei Ubuya is a traditional Japanese-style inn (ryokan) offering views of Mt. Fuji over Lake Kawaguchiko from the large windows of every guestroom.

View of Lake Kawaguchiko and Mount Fuji from a Kozantei Ubuya terrace
View of Lake Kawaguchiko and Mount Fuji from a Kozantei Ubuya terrace

How would you like a chance to experience the traditional Japanese lifestyle and hospitality? Imagine staying in a Japanese-style room with a tatami mat, wearing robe and slippers, and sleeping on futon beds? Ecstatic. Are you wondering how you can enjoy all these? If you stay in a Japanese ryokan. That’s an incredible vacation idea and let's not waste time anymore and explain all the details here.

What is a ryokan?

A ryokan is a Japanese-styled inn. It offers an authentic experience of the Japanese lifestyle. Ryokans are found throughout the country and especially in hot spring resorts. They are the best to experience traditional Japanese life. Many people both from Japan and abroad opt for ryokans to have a memorable vacation.

You will find different types of ryokans in Japan, some are small with a few rooms and run by families while others are huge hotel-like establishments with hundreds of rooms.

The cost also varies according to the facilities available. Generally, they are expensive and ideal to pamper yourself for a few days.

kaiseki dinner
Kaiseki dinner at Kozantei Ubuya

Ryokans offer traditional elaborate Japanese meals – kaiseki – served in an old-fashioned atmosphere. You will love to follow the traditional etiquettes that will give you a glimpse of Japanese culture and history.

A splendid holiday in Ubuya

The gentle sunrays will wake you from your deep slumber. As you open your eyes, Lake Kawaguchi will wish you good morning. The reflection of Mount Fuji on the calm waters of the lake will fill your heart with joy. After you get refreshed, the friendly ryokan staff will serve you breakfast. As you feast on the delicacies, you will be overwhelmed by their taste and look. Does this seem like a dream? I was just describing a day at Ubuya, one of the most popular ryokans of Japan.

There are 51 rooms and suites in this ryokan. There are two room styles available: A Japanese-style room or a Western-style room with a private open-air bath (Japanese-style room and twin room) The ryokan has a spa, library, and recreational activities. You will get free wi-fi in the public areas.

suite at Kozantei Ubuya
A suite at Kozantei Ubuya

The rooms are furnished tastefully in Japanese style. You will enjoy walking on the tatami mat and sleeping on the futon bed. These unique experiences will make your stay here memorable. Submerge yourself in the indoor mineral hot spring or onsen and refresh your body and mind.

The hotel staff will serve you breakfast and dinner in the traditional Japanese way.

Ubuya -a brief introduction

Ubuya is located in Fujikawaguchiko in the southern Yamanashi Prefecture. Being located at the foothills of Mt. Fuji, the place has abundant natural beauty.

Kawaguchi is the nearest railway station. It provides the easiest route to reach Ubuya. Usually, foreign tourists arrive at Tokyo airport and from there they take a train or bus to reach Kawaguchi. The train route is very scenic. Many tourists travel to Shinjuku and take a bus to reach the Kawaguchi railway station.

Once you reach Kawaguchi, you can avail yourself to the pickup service from the hotel to reach Ubuya.

Attractions of Kawaguchi

Kawaguchi is one of the popular tourist destinations in Japan. One of the major attractions of this area is the view of Mount Fuji. Yoshidaguchi 5th station or Kawaguchiko 5th station is the best place to have spectacular views of the mountain. Another plus point of the station is that the famous five lakes of Mount Fuji are also visible from here.

If you have plans to climb Mount Fuji, the station provides the starting point. There are a few restaurants and shops near the station where you can freshen up and buy essentials for your trek.

Arakurayama Sengen shrine

Want some more magical views? Head to Arakura sengen shrine. From the shrine, you can see Mount Fuji. 398 steps will take you to the top from where the peak and Chureito Pagoda are visible. This spot attracts a huge number of tourists during spring when the sakura blossoms and the entire place looks magical.

Kitaguchi Hongu Sengen Shrine

This shrine is located at the starting point of the trail to Mt. Fuji. People visit this shrine to pray for a safe climb. Three unique festivals are celebrated in this shrine every year. If you happen to visit the area during any of these, don’t forget to experience them.

Ropeway view

The best thing about Kawaguchi is that it adorns different looks in different seasons. We all know how colorful autumn looks when the leaves don different shades. You can experience this in Kawaguchi also. The Mt. Tenjo Ropeway offers panoramic views of the lake, the peak, and the trees in different hues make the scenery idyllic.

Things you cannot miss

Like every other place, Kawaguchi also has a few must-visit locations. Check them out:

A day out in Oishi Park – You can spend a day at Oishi Park, enjoying the views of the mountain. The park is well maintained and has many flowering shrubs. The lavender flowers bloom here profusely giving the park a purple carpet look. There are restaurants and shops around to get refreshments and also buy Japanese mementos.

Ide Shuzo Sake brewery – Are you looking for an off-beat experience to make your Japan vacation more memorable? Visit this brewery. It is located close to the Kawaguchiko station. This brewery is a family enterprise and is being run for 21 generations. Yes, you read it right and this makes it a must-visit in your Ubuya tour.

You can learn the process of sake making and also sample some of the brews.

Aokigahara-jukai forest and lava cave – The fun never ends but gets more thrilling. Let’s check out the Aokigahara forest which is situated on the northern foot of Mount Fuji. Dense and dark, this forest is ideal for hiking. Go with a guide and you will love the experience. There are a few lava caves near the forest. Please don’t miss them. Though the temperature is near freezing point all year round, the sights will create an indelible impression in your mind.

Visiting a new place always sounds exciting but if you get a chance to enjoy the ethnic lifestyle or witness the culture of the place, your holiday becomes more meaningful. Spend a weekend in Ubuya and you will always relish the memories.