At the entrance past a huge clock, magnificent coloured images of Fujisan in varying light conditions and seasons were displayed. I looked out across the lake and could only see Fuji’s base barely visible in black and white. This is also a major stop for tour buses. Jars of blueberry jam and more were displayed on the shelves. We relaxed with a nice light meal near a pergola. We continued cycling close to the water’s edge and passed small patches of wild flowers and rice fields. Straws of rice hung upside down on wooden poles to dry. At one stage, the pathway was completely covered with undergrowth and sedge grasses. With a little effort, we continued along this shoreline. Where there were no paths, we detoured towards the main roads. We cycled past several capes and bays along the shore. Picturesque settlements dotted the shoreline. Once we had passed the Koyo Tunnel, the stretch of road was covered with evergreen trees on either side and was pleasant to ride. The damp weather continued and the skies stubbornly grey.
Along the main road, opposite a shrine, was a delightful eatery. It was small but had fabulous views of the lake and the rocky outcrops floating on the water. With our shoes damp and clothing wrapped under the rain coats, we decided to stop for lunch. The hostess could not speak any English. However, a congenial couple next to us acted as interpreters. There was only one fixed lunch menu – pork belly. I requested for a vegetarian option. The hostess obliged.
“…..had only two dishes on the menu – lunch and desert……the food looked amazing. On my plate was the most delicious smelling pork belly, soup, eggs and potato salad – a scrumptious combination” – Navindd
We had one of the best meals served by a hospitable hostess. The atmosphere was great –homely. It is these small eateries that are a delight when travelling around in Japan, both in cities and rural areas. As usual language barriers bring about special rapport. These are the memories that last a long time about these places. Later we tucked into some lovely sweet local deserts. We continued cycling as the day headed towards dusk. The gloomy weather continued but was pleasant to cycle.