|Spoiler Inside: Why not have some more crappy selfies?||SelectShow>|
After the relentlessly commercial Glass Forest, we went to the Hakone Open Air Museum, which is really cool. Modern art statues and installations in the open air, what is not to like? There were quite a few installations that kids could climb on, which was really cool. And they have a lot of Picasso stuff — this is the “Marching Flower” (which also was a Pokemon Go gym…)
The extremely cool Picasso Tower, made with glass-in-concrete. It’s really tall, and the light shines through it, and you can go all the way up over the double-helix spiral staircase and see if you can make out some of the figures.
The next day, we went to visit the Lalique museum, with its gorgeous collection of jewelry and glasswork. Next to it was a cafe where we had lunch. In the other part of the building they had a wagon from the Orient Express, which you could visit at designated times (and when we were there, we couldn’t go there, alas.)
We went to our next destination: Fujikawaguchiko, driving through a snowstorm! The next day, we went to visit the Chureito Pagoda. After a navigational mishap that saw us make a large detour over a toll road, we arrived at the parking lot.
Halfway up the mountain to the pagoda. It was a brisk climb, but we were too cheap to get the taxi that was ferrying people to the top.
That is the pagoda! Mt Fuji could have been see on the left side of the pagoda. The cherry trees were not yet blossoming, unfortunately.
We went to the Ice Cave, a cave that contains… ice. It’s so cold in there, that the ice survives the summer. But we had to wear helmets because we had to crawl through narrow spaces. Look at the scratches on those helmets!
Then we went to the Wind Cave, about a kilometer down the road. This is already down the stairs, before entering the cave itself. (The ceilings were higher there, so no helmet needed.)
The Wind Cave had even more ice in it than the Ice Cave! We felt a bit cheated, especially since it wasn’t particularly windy in there either.
Then we went to the Bat Cave, which is even further down the road. It was pretty quiet there, and this was the most impressive cave system. We didn’t see any bats, because those were behind doors and it was daytime anyway.
There was a little museum there, and of course a museum at a Bat Cave should have an exhibition of Batman posters!