For those planning to go to Hakone, will no doubt end up arriving or departing Hakone-Yumoto Station via the Hakone Tozan Line.
Located in the western Kanagawa Prefecture of Japan in the Ashigarashimo District, a mountainous district that is sparsely populated, but a location with a lot of history.
Hakone-Yumoto Station (OH-51) opened back on October 1, 1888 and was a horse-drawn terminal of Yumoto Station. by June 1, 1919, a railway was opened and by 1950, Odakyu Electric Railway would provide services from Shinjuku Station on its Odawara Line via Limited Express “Romancecar” and Express (commuter trains).
A new station was built in 2009 and now, the new look of Hakone-Yumoto Station is quite impressive compared to how it was over a decade ago. Part of the reason was to create a barrier-free station and also to relieve traffic congestion around the station. A pedestrian deck going from the top was added in April 2012.
And today, the outside looks like this:
But when you go to Hakone, I found Hakone-Yumoto Station to be quite welcoming to travelers. If there is one thing that is heavily emphasized when you go to Hakone, it’s that the place love their sweets (wagashi – Japanese confections). And the same can be said inside Hakone-Yumoto Station.
And of the popular wagashi you will find is Nanohana (or “Hakone no Otsukisama”), a type of manju which is delicious. Also, there is “Gokuro-san”, a manju using brown sugar and bamboo charcoal, so don’t fear if you see black wagashi. It’s delicious.
As for arriving to Hakone-Yumoto Station, the first thing you notice on the train over is how you are surrounded by the mountains and in the winter, great peak of colors with the fall/winter leaves. Of course, going in the winter, you notice how cold things are as well!
Hakone-Yumoto station attracts around 10,169 passengers per day and 4,357 daily riders.
Once you get inside, you start to realize that hazelnuts are big in Hakone and also a lot of wagashi being sold. But also food for the trip back to Odawara or Shinjuku Station. Including brown smoked eggs.
But once you leave the station, you will be greeted by a poster of Rei Ayanami from “Neon Genesis Evangelion”. Because the official Evangelion shop for Hakone is right next to the station (the manga/anime series is set in Hakone). I will make a blog post about this store soon.
Overall, Hakone-Yumoto is a small station that is no doubt inviting for travelers and those who want to bring home a sample of the sweets from Hakone.
So, make sure to sample part of Hakone wagashi and if you are looking for gifts to bring back home, definitely pick something up from Hakone-Yumoto station!