I decided to take a day trip to see Mount Fuji, the biggest mountain in Japan, while I was in Tokyo. The train took me all the way to Fuji-Yoshida, the town where people used to start the trek up mount Fuji from. On the train on the way in I could see the size and the snow on Fuji but it wasn't very clear so I thought I would wait until later in the day to take a photo when I thought the haze would clear. This turned out to be the complete opposite of what happened and the haze got a lot worse throughout the day making it impossible to see the iconic mountain. Fuji-yoshida had a shrine and some old houses that were used by climbers before the bus started taking people up the mountain. Other than that there was nothing really of note in the town. Kawaguchi was another area noted for seeing Fuji, right next to some of the 'Fuji Five Lakes'. I took a gondola up one of the mountains near the town that had a decent view over the whole area and where Mt. Fuji should have been.
On my way back I decided to go to the Fuji Highlands theme park in the same area which turned out to hold the world records for many of its rides, including, highest, most spins and most loops. Without realising I went on the rollercoaster with the most spins in the world, which was insane and a few other rides.
Another trip I made out of Tokyo was with the Shimomura's to my first Japanese castle near Tokyo. There I got to dress up as a Samurai and learnt about the different historical periods in Japan. Afterwards we went to an all you can eat Japanese buffet, with some Western twists, which was absolutely delicious and showed me the wide variety of Japanese cuisine that I wasn't aware of. In the afternoon we went to a hot springs area up a mountain that reminded me a lot of Rotorua in New Zealand, especially the smell! To finish off the day we went to a traditional Japanese sauna with hot pools. I was initial apprehensive about the nudity that every Japanese bathouse has but it was fine in the end and I was glad I did it.