Hakone is a hot springs town located about two hours by train from Tokyo. The town sits by Lake Ashi, and cruising the lake is a popular sightseeing activity.
One unique and fun way you can cruise Lake Ashi is by a pirate ship. The ship departs at Hakone’s three ports: Togendai Port, Moto-Hakone Port and Hakone-machi Port.
Keep reading to learn more about the pirate ship cruises, buying tickets, nearby attractions and more.
Read about the Hakone Free Pass, and how it can help you travel Hakone on a budget↓↓
Travel Hakone on a Budget! Using the Hakone Free Pass (with Prices & Courses)
About the Hakone Pirate Ships
Lake Ashi and Mount Fuji
The Hakone Pirate Ships began operating in 1964. These ships tour Lake Ashi, which is located at the foot of Mount Hakone.
The 3 Hakone Pirate Ships of Lake Ashi
There are three different pirate ships to choose from: Royal II, Victory and Vasa.
1. The Royale II
The first Hakone Pirate Ship: "The Royale II"
The Royal II ship models the 18th century French battleship Royal Louis. It has a beautiful red exterior, and its details (such as the hall in the rear of the ship) accurately resembles that of Royal Louis.
In the ship, you can find figures of sailors and a realistic steering wheel.
2. The Victory
The second Hakone Pirate Ship: "The Victory"
Victory models the 18th century English battleship Victory, which fought many battles such as the Battle of Trafalgar.
Both Royal II and Victory have elevators inside, making them a more accessible option.
3. The Vasa
The third Hakone Pirate Ship: "The Vasa"
Vasa is inspired by the 17th century Swedish warship Vasa, which was made by King Gustavus Adolphus. The ship is lavishly decorated with stained glass windows and sculptures.
Pirate looking through a telescope
On the observatory deck, you can find a figure of a pirate looking through a telescope. On Vasa, too, are many figures of pirates.
3 Ports to Board the Hakone Pirate Ships
The Hakone Pirate Ships can be boarded from three of Hakone’s ports: Hakone-machi Port, Moto-Hakone Port and Togendai Port.
1. Hakone-machi Port
Victory and a sign reading Hakone-machi Port
Hakone-machi Port is accessible via the Hakone Tozan Bus and the Tokai Bus Orange Shuttle. Nearby, you can find the Hakone Ekiden Museum.
Hakone Ekiden Museum
The Hakone Ekiden Museum is dedicated to the Hakone Ekiden collegiate relay race, which is held every January. The race is a popular New Year’s tradition, and at this museum, visitors can learn about the race’s history, see displays of the uniforms worn and more.
There is a café and a souvenir ship at the Hakone Ekiden Museum, where you can relax before or after the pirate ship cruise.
About a 5-minute walk from Hakone-machi Port, you can find the Hakone Sekisho, which was a significant checkpoint during the Edo Period (1603 – 1867). The checkpoint buildings today are a reconstruction of its original form.
The inspection sites at Hakone Sekisho are very accurately depicted. The facility will have you feeling as if you have slipped back into the Edo Period.
2. Moto-Hakone Port
Moto-Hakone Port locates about a 10-minute ship ride from Hakone-machi Port. Near Moto-Hakone Port, you can find Hakone Shrine.
The torii gate of the shrine sits by Lake Ashi. The gate is named the “Torii of Peace”.
“Torii of Peace” at Hakone Shrine
Next to Hakone Shrine is Kuzuryu Shrine. Visiting the two shrines is said to bring good fortune.
Read more about the spiritual hotspots - Hakone Shrine & Kuzuryu Shrine↓↓
Guidance for Ryo-sha Mairi to Hakone Shrine & Kuzuryu Shrine
3. Togendai Port
Togendai Port is about a 25-minute ship ride from Moto-Hakone Port. Togendai Station, for the Hakone Ropeway, is connected to the port.
Hop on the ropeway for about 20 minutes, and you’ll reach Owakudani Valley. The views there are incredible, with the vast horizon and the steam and smoke rising from the ground.
Make sure to try out kuro-tamago, a naturally cooked egg that is black due to the chemical reaction of the volcanic gasses.
About a 3-minute walk from Owakudani Valley, you can find Kojiri-enchi Park. Here, you can delve in Hakone’s rich nature.
Getting Tickets for Hakone Pirate Ships
For those planning to ride both the Hakone Pirate Ship and the Hakone Ropeway, there is a set ticket deal. You can purchase roundtrip tickets for both the Hakone Pirate Ship and the Hakone Ropeway for a total of ¥3,400.
Without the set deal, the one-way ride from Hakone-machi Port or Moto-Hakone Port to Togendai Port is ¥1,000. A round trip ticket for the Hakone Pirate Ship is ¥1,840, and ¥2,550 for the ropeway, adding up to a total of ¥4,390. You can save ¥990 by purchasing the roundtrip tickets together!
*Prices as of February 2019.
For those traveling to Hakone by train or bus and staying overnight, the Hakone Free Pass is a great option.
With the purchase of the Hakone Free Pass, you can ride on Odakyu trains, Hakone Ropeway, Hakone Pirate Ship, and Hakone Bus. You can choose between the 2 or 3-day pass.
Cruise on the Hakone Pirate Ship for an Unforgettable Travel Experience
The Hakone Pirate Ship is a fun, unique way to get around Hakone. Hop on the Hakone Pirate Ship and enjoy all that Hakone has to offer!