We took a day trip south to Lake Suwa. After 50 mins of train ride, a short 5 mins walk brought us to the scenic lake. Qiqi can’t wait to test out the stones on the beach.

Plenty of lake activities there. There are ports offering a round trip cruise ride in boats decorated into swan, turtle, or whale.

There’s a geyser which spouts out stream and hot water. It used to a natural geyser which spout out water 30m high intermittently. It’s now controlled artificially to spout every hour through a pipe. Nevertheless, it’s still worth a visit.

There’s a free hot spring foot bath which offers surprising hot water, and it was so hot that it took my wife a while to plant her whole feet in. Nothing beats having feet soaks in hot spring under the cold weather. Even Qiqi also enjoyed the foot bath.

We also visited a miso factory. Obviously, Qiqi preferred ice cream instead of miso.

There’s an old stream train display along the beach, and my wife can’t wait to climb up to the captain’s chamber. 

The highlight of the day was the Takashima castle, which took us 15 mins of walk towards inland. Qiqi was the happiest among us when we reached there.

Not because of the beautiful castle but the swing in the park beside the castle.