Mt. Kintoki is located on the northern side of the Hakone outer rim and is known for the legend of Kintaro. It is one of the most popular mountains in Hakone because it has a good view and a course time of only three hours, making it easy to climb on the spur of the moment. There are no difficult sections, and the convenient access makes it easy to plan and a good mountain for beginners to climb.
Mt. Kintoki is located in Sengokuhara in the northwestern part of Hakone at an altitude of 1,212 meters and is one of Japan’s “Three Hundred Famous Mountains”. Due to its location it is a very popular mountain to see Mt. Fuji.
The main route to the summit of Mt. Kintoki is from Kintoki Shrine because it has a free parking lot and is a short distance, so most people take this route. There is no place to get lost on the route and trails are well marked. The standard time to reach the summit is about 1 hour and 50 minutes, but experienced climbers and healthy walkers can reach the summit in about an hour.
Mt. Kintoki is named for Sakata Kintoki who became a powerful warrior for Minamoto no Yorimitsu in the Heian period (794-1185). According to legend he was raised on these mountains and spent his childhood playing with the animals. This is the basis for the famous tale of Kintaro known throughout Japan. There are a number of interesting points of interest along the trail associated with this legend, including the large rock where he once lived under with his mother. At the peak is a large ax, an item commonly associated with images of a young Kintaro.
At the Kintoki trailhead, the starting point for this climb, there is the Kintoki-jinjya iriguchi bus stop for the Hakone Tozan Bus. There is a public restroom at the base of the trail as well as a water supply and brushes to clean the mud off your shoes when descending the mountain. There is a bathroom at the peak with a small fee.
When you arrive near the crest of the outer rim,, the trail splits into two directions, to the right for Mt. Myojin and the other for Mt. Kintoki. Turn left and follow the path for the short final section to the top.
The summit of Mt. Kintoki is not very large, but there are two huts open for restrooms and eating. There are refreshments, noodles, and other small snacks available.Many people have lunch on the summit slope, and it can get crowded during hiking season, especially on weekends and holidays. In one of the huts are banners for people who have made the hike more than 1000 times.