My visit to Oshino Hakkai village with Yokai

by Ram Ya December. 06, 2016 5641 views

After our visit to Arakurayama Sengen Park, Yokai took us to Oshino Hakkai village. This is another popular mount Fuji view point located between Lake Kawaguchiko and Lake Yamanakako (Fuji Five Lakes). The village is popular for the exhibition village and the Gassho houses. It is popular among tourists for the majestic views of mount Fuji in the background of Gassho houses.

Gassho house with a water mill by the stream at Oshino Hakkai village

Oshino Hakkai village has eight naturally fed ponds. These ponds are fed by the snow melt from the nearby mount Fuji. It is said that the water is so clear due to being filtered through porous layers of lava rock. You can actually drink and feel the coldness of this water. They challenge you to keep your hand in it for 60 seconds.

Pond with crystal clear water

Ponds are quite deep and some of them have very large koi and salmon (as far as I can tell) fish. They are also home to beautiful lushes aquatic plants.

Aquatic plants and fish in Oshino Hakkai village ponds

Can you spot the fish in this photo?

Being popular with the tourists, Oshino Hakkai village can be quite busy. I wanted to capture the human elements of this village through some black and white photography. You will find a few of these shots below.

Sign language is understood anywhere in the world

An old lady carrying a bucket of water

A Ramen station.

As I was passing by a store owner opened this traditional steam cooker. I love the use of smoke in photography, all the better when it is unplanned.

There are a lot of eateries in this village. This is at another Ramen place

There is an open air museum in the village called the Hannoki Bayashi Shiryokan. This museum contains several old houses that are maintained as exhibition houses. You could see how the traditional Japanese lived several hundred years ago. Largest of the eight ponds are located within the museum. You can also see Mt' Fuji by the old Gassho houses.

Mount Fuji behind the old Gassho houses in

At the end of the trip, Yokai guided us towards the museum observation rooftop to see mount Fuji behind the old Gassho houses. It was getting a little dark at this point because the sun was setting behind mt' Fuji. Luckily, I had my tripod with me to try some exposure bracketing to bring out all the details of this scene. As I explained in this forum post, I then combined the photos to make an HDR image. I am pleasantly surprised by the high ISO performance of my camera.

A big thank you to PhotoBlog veteran Yokai for taking me to this beautiful village and many other places in Japan. Without your help, we wouldn't be able to experience such wonderful places.


Thanks for reading. If you enjoyed this post, please leave a comment below. You are welcome to critique photos.

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There are 27 comments , add yours!
Jose-Miguel Lisbona 3 years, 3 months ago

#haikuforyou @Ram #10

Glorious Mount Fuji!
Wonderful subdued hues seen.
Light in old Gassho!

3 years, 3 months ago Edited
Carmen Boutot 3 years, 3 months ago

#10 and #4 are stunning

3 years, 3 months ago Edited
Daris Pro 3 years, 3 months ago

Amazing adventure,good photos!

3 years, 3 months ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Daris Pro 3 years, 3 months ago

Thank you, Dario! Japan is the secret, what an amazing country you live in!

3 years, 3 months ago Edited
Sara G 3 years, 4 months ago

Wow! How beautiful and colorful shot #10..Into my favs. Very interesting post.

3 years, 4 months ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Sara G 3 years, 3 months ago

Thank you, Sara. It was great to see this mountain up close.

3 years, 3 months ago Edited
Holly Crocker 3 years, 4 months ago

Lovely images. I couldn't choose a favorite if you asked me to! Looks like an amazing adventure.

3 years, 4 months ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Holly Crocker 3 years, 3 months ago

Thank you so much, Holly!

3 years, 3 months ago Edited
Tom Symons 3 years, 4 months ago

Beautiful pictures of a beautiful area, some day I wish I could visit myself. And thanks to Yokai for showing you around!

3 years, 4 months ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Tom Symons 3 years, 3 months ago

Thanks for the kind words, Tom. Yes, Yokai was amazing and one of the kindest person I met!
I hope you get to visit Japan one day :)

3 years, 3 months ago Edited
Chossid 3 years, 4 months ago

Love 4 and 10, and the slice of life photos like 9

3 years, 4 months ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Chossid 3 years, 3 months ago

Thanks a lot, Chossid. I am glad you enjoyed the post. Always appreciate your kind words :)

3 years, 3 months ago Edited
Amy Daniels 3 years, 4 months ago

Mount Fuji pic is breathtaking

3 years, 4 months ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Amy Daniels 3 years, 3 months ago

Thank you, Amy. Appreciate your kind words.

3 years, 3 months ago Edited
Andrés Álvarez A 3 years, 4 months ago

Great post , i love the composition of the last pic, an the colors, is very pretty the combination of the escenery colors and the vivacity of tones.

Your Black and whites are film or digital??

3 years, 4 months ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Andrés Álvarez A 3 years, 3 months ago

Hi Andres, Thank you very much for the kind words.
Black and whites are digital and I edited them with lightroom.

3 years, 3 months ago Edited
Gillian Parsons 3 years, 4 months ago

Yes the reflections and colours are amazing.

3 years, 4 months ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Gillian Parsons 3 years, 3 months ago

Thank you very much, Gillian. Appreciate your kind words.

3 years, 3 months ago Edited
Ben Mckechnie 3 years, 4 months ago

#4 Love the reflections in this image!

3 years, 4 months ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Ben Mckechnie 3 years, 3 months ago

Thanks a lot, Ben. I was really lucky to have this Salmon just come into my shot!
Actually, I took this shot after seeing Yokai take one there. I would've missed it if not for him ;)

3 years, 3 months ago Edited
Antonio Gil 3 years, 4 months ago

#4 and #10 to my favs. What a beautiful place and pictures. I also liked the human b&w pictures. Great work Ram.

3 years, 4 months ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Antonio Gil 3 years, 3 months ago

Thank you for the kind words and adding them to your favs, Antonio.

3 years, 3 months ago Edited
Shahul Khalid 3 years, 4 months ago

#10 Wow!! I always wanted to visit Mount Fuji.. But looking at this photo I like to see the near by villages as well

3 years, 4 months ago Edited
Jay Boggess 3 years, 4 months ago

#10 leaves me speechless.....
What a fabulous opportunity to get to visit such an amazing place, especially with Yokai as your personal tour guide! The photos & story are simply top notch! WOW!

3 years, 4 months ago Edited
Carl Schraefel 3 years, 4 months ago

I enjoyed this post very much, thanks!

3 years, 4 months ago Edited
Yokai - 3 years, 4 months ago

What successful pictures you took, Ram!
The sun was about to set, it was getting darker and darker actually. To make the matter worse we had to take photos against the sun.
The tripod you brought from Canada must have been very useful for sure.

I like your people / street photography. You were always quick when shooting people.
If we are slow on the streets, we will miss the decisive moment.
The results of the b/w images are so captivating as well !

I enjoyed your detailed story as well.
Thanks for sharing you great travel report !!

3 years, 4 months ago Edited
Aniket Pant 3 years, 4 months ago

Lovely pictures Ram. Thanks for sharing

3 years, 4 months ago Edited