Peak Japan: why foreign tourists are going mad for Mount Fuji

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Japanese creator Hokusai famously produced a bid of woodblock prints titled Thirty-Six Views of Mount Fuji, and hundreds of years later, nan majestic upland still captures nan imagination. However, now that translates into record numbers of tourists eager to commemorate their sojourn pinch painstakingly staged photos.

An unencumbered position of Fuji is thing to wealth – truthful overmuch truthful that a existent property developer this week agreed to tear down a astir completed flat block successful occidental Tokyo because it blocked residents’ position of nan mountain. Developer Sekisui House said it decided to return down nan 10-storey building owed to “insufficient information for nan effect connected nan scenery”.

The mountain’s fame is besides causing problems successful different parts of Japan, pinch huge barriers installed to artifact nan view astatine celebrated photograph spots by authorities exasperated by crowds of severely behaved overseas tourists.


What is Mount Fuji and wherever is it?

The 3,776-metre highest – an progressive volcano that past erupted successful 1707 – is nan astir recognisable upland successful Japan, and arguably nan world. That’s down to its satisfyingly conical contours, which straddle nan prefectures of Shizuoka and Yamanashi, and its inimitable spot successful nan Japanese psyche. It is spot of belief pilgrimage, a harbinger of bully fortune, and nan inspiration for countless artists and writers. It is nary coincidence that nan mountain, which is visible from Tokyo connected clear days, made cameo appearances astatine nan opening ceremonies of nan 2019 Rugby World Cup and nan 2020 Tokyo Olympics.


Why has it go a must-see for visitors?

Warning signs adjacent nan Fujisan Yumeno Ohashi, aliases Mount Fuji Great Dream Bridge, amid complaints astir tourer crowds.
Warning signs adjacent nan Fujisan Yumeno Ohashi, aliases Mount Fuji Great Dream Bridge, amid complaints astir tourer crowds. Photograph: Franck Robichon/EPA

Its fame is nan inevitable consequence of nan surge successful tourism to Japan since nan state lifted recreation restrictions aft nan Covid-19 pandemic. Aided by a anemic yen and Japan’s estimation for safety, hospitality and delicious food, much than 3 cardinal group visited successful March and April, pinch nan yearly number expected to break nan erstwhile grounds of 31.9 cardinal group successful 2019. Skipping Mount Fuji connected a sojourn to Japan would beryllium for illustration giving nan pyramids a miss connected a travel to Egypt. While nan upland is visible from slug trains for agelong capable to return photos, galore visitors are eager to get overmuch person for that cleanable vacation memento.


Mount Fuji is seen done a spread connected a achromatic surface installed crossed from a convenience shop successful Fujikawaguchiko town.
Mount Fuji is seen done a spread connected a achromatic surface installed crossed from a convenience shop successful Fujikawaguchiko town. Photograph: 味園愛美/AP

The Unesco world practice tract has go nan target of visitors hoping to seizure a quintessential Japanese photograph for their societal media accounts. That’s why this period a mesh surface was put up successful nan municipality of Fujikawaguchiko to deter hordes of visitors readying to seizure nan upland rising successful nan distance, pinch different Japanese icon – a Lawson convenience shop – successful nan foreground. But nan measure, introduced aft complaints that visitors were littering, trespassing and breaking postulation rules, has had mixed results. Within days, holes ample capable to accommodate a smartphone camera lens started appearing successful nan mesh screen. There are plans to erect a caller obstruction made of tougher material. Authorities successful a adjacent municipality opportunity they will erect a gangly metallic obstruction by nan extremity of nan period aft smartphone-wielding visitors strayed onto a engaged roadworthy to return photos from Mount Fuji Dream Bridge.


What person authorities done astir overcrowding connected nan upland itself?

People hoping to hike to Fuji’s summit, aliases astatine slightest to 1 of its loftier stages, will soon person to book successful beforehand and salary a interest of ¥2,000 (£10). The measure, which applies to nan celebrated Yoshida way up nan mountain, will spell into effect astatine nan commencement of nan yearly climbing play successful July. Authorities dream nan interest will easiness concerns astir overcrowding and littering, and discourage “bullet ascents”, successful which climbers, often inexperienced and inappropriately dressed, statesman their ascent astatine nighttime truthful they scope nan acme successful clip to watch nan sun rise, past descend without taking due rest. Entries to nan way will beryllium capped astatine 4,000 a time to easiness congestion, and nary climbing will beryllium permitted betwixt 4pm and 3am.

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Source theguardian
theguardian