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A mountain can only mean 2 things: hiking and lots of nature. If that’s not your thing, it’ll be a waste of money but more importantly a waste of time.
In the past, people of Tokyo used to look at this place as the icon of the countryside, and made a joke out of its existence, while people living farther away had no clue of its existence. However, in 2007 the highly acclaimed Michelin Travel Guide gave this mountain the prestigious 3 star ranking, and since then, it has gained popularity from avid climbers to casual nature lovers.
Only a few mountains can lay claim to that award and Japan’s Mt. Fuji is also one of them. Frankly, who knows why the French gave it 3 stars, but the reason isn’t so important, just enjoy the scenic hike.
The mountain is home to Tokyo’s Hachioji City reaching 599m in height.
It was originally a spiritual ground and a protected forest through generations; now, it is no doubt a precious landscape of nature left to enjoy by many.
It takes about an hour by train from central Tokyo to reach the mountain and it is well kept with a cable car to ease the task of hiking from the base to top. So, you will see people of all ages hiking up the trail.
About 2.6 million people climb Mt. Takao a year making it the No.1 climbed mountain in the world.
Take the Keio Takao Line [京王高尾線] to Takao Sanguchi Station [高尾山口駅].
Take the JR Chuo Line [JR中央線] to Takao Station [高尾駅] and transfer to the Keio Takao Line [京王高尾線] and alight at Takao Sanguchi Station [高尾山口駅].
※JR: Chuo Line, transfer at Takao Station and take the Keio Railway Line
The first and foremost is to enjoy the view from the summit. On a nice day, you can even see Mt. Fuji in the distance and Tokyo City’s skyscrapers. Also, you’ll be able to experience nature with surrounding forests and waterfalls to heal you from any city stress.
The absolute best time to go is in November, during the autumn foliage, basking in indescribable colours. Halfway up the mountain exists a famous Buddhist temple also worth viewing.
Tororo Soba, a local noodle dish, cannot be overlooked! A must try by all Japanese, so you should try it as well.
Address: Takaomachi, Hachioji, Tokyo
Access: Keio Railway: Take the Takao Line to Yamaguchi Station, then take the Takao Mountain Cable.
From Takao Mountain Station, walk aprox. 40 min. to reach the summit.
Open: The cable car opens from 8:00am but closing depends on season and day.
The lift operates from 9am〜4:30pm (open later on weekends and holidays)
Fee: Cable Car and Lift is 900 yen per person roundtrip.