Introducing Old Hakone Highway Cedar Avenue | Stunning Scenery of Japan | Japan Highlights Travel, for sightseeing around Tokaido

Walk today what was one of the most dangerous places along the Tokaido

Stone paved roads which so many travelers have trodden since the Edo period, and cedar trees standing on both sides and covering the street. The Old Hakone Highway went through what was the most difficult section along the Tokaido, Hakone Pass, which was reputed for being impregnable. The cedar avenue, where sunlight trickles through the branches of the trees, provides welcome relief along that highway. The stone pavement and cedar avenue were originally put in place in the Edo period to eliminate mud during bad weather, provide shelter from rain and wind and create shade using trees, and the atmosphere of that time still remains today. Here and there along the way you can admire Mt. Fuji, and enjoy stunning scenery which is just the same as what travelers of yore saw.

※ Views like the one shown in the photo can only be seen under certain conditions (time of day, weather etc.).

  • Viewing period:
  • All year round
  • Challenge level:
  • ★☆☆
  • Feeling:
  • Healing

Travel advice

A walking course called "Mishima Yume Kaido" has been set up around Old Hakone Highway. Take the Numazu Tozan Tokai Bus bound for Moto-Hakone-ko from "Mishima Station" of JR Tokaido Shinkansen for approx. 45 minutes. Alight at "Hakone Toge", and you will be at the start of the walking course. Be sure to wear clothes and shoes that will be easy to walk in, as there are hills all along the way. The place where the stone pavement and cedar avenue in the photo are is an area near Yamanaka Castle Ruins called the Koshimaki district.

The pleasure of travel: Old Hakone Highway

Along with the stone pavement and Cedar Avenue, there are many other sightseeing spots where you can get a taste of what it must have felt like to be a traveler in times gone by. Examples include an avenue of pine trees, and "ichirizukas", markers the Edo shogunate government set up as milestones at intervals of one "ri" (about 3.9 km). There are still some ichirizukas around Mishima, like Hochi-ji Temple Ichirizuka and Gyokusei-ji Temple Ichirizuka, so you should definitely try to find some of them. Also, at "Mishimagoyomishi no Yakata" near Mishima Taisha Shrine, visitors can experience the history of the "Mishima-goyomi" calendars that travelers in the Edo period would buy as souvenirs. And don't forget to enjoy your fill of the bounty from the foothills to the west of Hakone, for example through deserts made from Mishima sweet potatoes and restaurants with menus full of home cooking based around Mishima vegetables.

Mishima-goyomi calendar

Hakone Seiroku Mishima Yasai

updated on Mar 15, 2016