Buoyed by the fact we finally had our luggage and final hotel room we decided to start taking advantage of being here we had ordered JR passes before leaving so we decided today would be a good day to cash them in and head off in search of some nature, little did we know it would be a mission to get there.
We arrived at Tokyo station vouchers in hand and did the exchange for our tickets in minutes, the very helpful lady booked us reserved seats on the shinkansen, the bullet train ride was fun as we whipped through Tokyo and out towards Nikko, we had a change and got on the quaint Nikko line and 50 minutes later we were there.
We decided against Edo wonderland, the themepark connected to the world herritage site instead setting off in search of the Dragon Head Waterfall. The only problem was that today was a bank holiday and everyone in the area had the same idea. The lady at the tourist information and told us that the bus which normally takes an hour today would take 2 hours and perhaps longer later in the day. Undettered we knew we wanted to see this so we joined the queue and waited for the bus. As expected there were not enough seats for everyone so it meant standing, after nearly 2 hours of solid bumper to bumper traffic up a steep and winding mountain pass my legs and back were starting to get tired. Luckily the lady behind me pointed out that from the side of the seat another mini seat popped out into the aisle and I was able to sit down. Relief doesn’t come close to describing how I felt and poor Mark was still stood for another half an hour until we reached the first Onsen (hot springs) and pretty much everyone got off. It was another half an hour on the bus to the top of the fountains but the views on the way were breathtaking and what greeted us when we got there made it all worthwhile.
The area is full of such natural beauty, it really is breathtaking. The internet here is quite flaky so i’m going to leave it at that for this post but I will upload more pictures when I can.