I spent my first two afternoons in Hakone at Owakudani. I had always wanted to see a live volcano ever since studying volcanoes in high school. While that dream has not come true yet, Owakudani came close. It is a great boiling valley with active boiling pools of sulfur-rich water and vents that spew steam and volcanic gases.
Besides the active volcanic activity, people are attracted to black eggs the valley is famous for. The eggs get their black colour by being hard-boiled in natural hot springs. The sulfur in the water gives the eggs their colour.
Legend has it that one egg adds seven years to one’s life span. If the legend is anything to go by, the five black eggs I ate have added 35 years to my life. That is more than the 26 years I have been living. In that case, I still have more years to travel and live life to the fullest.
After eating the black eggs, I ate black ice-cream. Don’t be fooled by the colour. The ice-cream tastes like any normal vanilla ice-cream. I believe the black colour of the ice-cream is all a marketing ploy to capitalize on the fame of the black eggs. After doing some research, I learnt that the black colour in the ice-cream was a result of charcoal being poured into the ice-cream mix. They also had some black steamed buns in the area.