Rising 3776 meters above sea level, Mount Fuji is Japan's tallest mountain and most iconic landmark. Images of the nearly perfect, solitary volcano have appeared in paintings, wood block prints and other artworks for centuries. Some collections even attempt to capture the essence of seeing the mountain from various viewpoints, Hokusai's popular "36 Views of Mount Fuji" being a prime example.
There are many opportunities for travelers to enjoy views of Mount Fuji. Of course, the most obvious would be to climb the mountain, as you cannot help but see the slopes as you plod along the trails up to the peak. But the climbing season only lasts for a few months and frankly, Mount Fuji looks better from afar than from close up.
Mount Fuji can be seen from countless points in the surrounding regions, seemingly assuming a different character from each perspective. On the clearest of days, its white capped peak may be visible from hundreds of kilometers away; however, more often than not the view of the mountaintop is obstructed by low hanging clouds or poor visibility. To increase your chances of success, try to see the mountain in the early mornings or late afternoons, especially during the colder winter months when visibility tends to better than during summer. The mountain's famous snow cap is typically visible from around November to around May.
The Fuji Five Lakes region on the northern slopes of Mount Fuji offers visitors the highest chance for good views of the mountain due to its proximity. The more distant Hakone is also a popular place to see the mountain, but odds of catching clear views are lower there since it needs to be clear both in Hakone and around the mountain. The following list includes these and other good spots from which to get a nice view of Mount Fuji:
On clear days, many of Tokyo's observation decks offer interesting views of Mount Fuji in contrast with the urban skyline of Tokyo. Thanks to an improvement in air quality, the number of days that Mount Fuji is visible from central Tokyo has steadily risen over the past decades and now stands at over 120.
Hours: 9:00 to 20:30 Closed: 3rd Sunday in May, December 29 to January 3 Admission: Free
Of the numerous observation decks in Tokyo, the centrally located Bunkyo Civic Center provides some of the most striking views of Mount Fuji, as the mountain can be seen looming large behind the skyscrapers of the Shinjuku district.
Takaosan is a wooded mountain in western Tokyo and one of the closest places to the city where you can enjoy nature and hiking. On clear days Mount Fuji is visible from the the mountain's summit and from the trail that continues westward along the ridge.
From the shinkansen
The Tokaido Shinkansen runs south of Mount Fuji, allowing travelers a view of the mountain from the trains as they whiz by. There are also some good spots south of the train tracks that allow for views of the shinkansen trains with Mount Fuji as backdrop.
Mount Fuji can be seen from the Tokaido Shinkansen between Tokyo and Osaka. When coming from Tokyo, the mountain appears on the right side of the train and is best viewed around Shin-Fuji Station, about 40-45 minutes into the journey. The best views can be enjoyed from the window-side seat F (or seat D in Green Cars).
Together with the train
The famous view of Mount Fuji in combination with shinkansen trains can be enjoyed from the farmland east of central Fuji City.
From the Fuji Five Lake Region
Just north of the mountain, the Fuji Five Lake region offers some of the best views of Mount Fuji. There are several points around the lakes with beautiful views. The area is also one of only a few places in Japan were you can see the rare "Double Diamond Fuji", i.e. Mount Fuji together with its reflection just as the rising or setting sun touches the mountain's peak.
The northern shore of Lake Kawaguchiko offers some of the most breathtaking views of the mountain, which sometimes come with a reflection in the lake. The shores offer views of the lake and mountain in combination with cherry blossoms usually around mid April and in combination with autumn colors usually around mid November.
The Chureito Pagoda is a five storied pagoda on the mountainside overlooking Fujiyoshida City. The pagoda is one of Fujigoko's most popular cherry blossom spots where you can get beautiful views of Mount Fuji rising up through a sea of cherry blossoms.
The Mount Fuji Panoramic Ropeway leads to an observation deck overlooking Mount Fuji and Lake Kawaguchiko from 400 meters up the side of Mount Tenjo. A hiking trail leads from here to Mount Mitsutoge, a popular day hike with good views of Mount Fuji.
Lake Motosuko is the westernmost of the five lakes and largely undeveloped. A famous view of the mountain from the lake's northwestern shore appears on Japan's 1000 yen bill. Unfortunately, it is rather difficult to reach by public transportation as many buses only stop along the eastern side of the lake.
Hakone offers some of the most beautiful views of Mount Fuji... when you can actually see it. Unfortunately visibility is often poor, especially during midday when fog and low clouds may gather on the mountain.
The Moto Hakone area along the southern shores of Lake Ashinoko offers the classic Hakone view of the lake in combination with Mount Fuji. Nice views can also be enjoyed from the Hakone Detached Palace and from the sightseeing boats that ply the lake.
Owakudani is an active volcanic "hell valley" on the northern slopes of Mount Hakone. On clear days Mount Fuji can be seen from the walking paths that lead around the area's fuming hot spring fields and from the ropeway that connects Togendai with Owakudani.
Outlet shoppers can enjoy views of Mount Fuji from the Gotemba Premium Outlets, one of the most popular outlet malls in Japan. The outlet mall features over 200 international and domestic brand stores located down in the valley between Hakone and the mountain.
From the Miura Peninsula
The Miura Peninsula is a small peninsula south of Yokohama, which is popular for its beaches. On a clear day, Mount Fuji can be seen from the beaches on the western side of the peninsula.
Western coast of Miura Peninsula
From Zushi to Miura, the beaches along the western coast of the Miura Peninsula offer good views of Mount Fuji across the bay.
From the Izu Peninsula
The Izu Peninsula is a popular resort area south of Mount Fuji. The best views are from the peninsula's western coast where you can see the mountain together with coastal scenery.
Miho Beach is a three kilometer long, pine tree-lined beach along a peninsula on the western coast of Suruga Bay. Famous for the views of its pebbly shoreline in combination with Mount Fuji, Miho Beach was added to the list of Japan's UNESCO World Heritage Sites together with Mount Fuji for this very reason.
From the air
Some flights to/from Tokyo's Haneda Airport closely pass by Mount Fuji, offering passengers a bird's eye view.
The best views of Mount Fuji can be enjoyed on domestic flights heading from Tokyo's Haneda Airport to destinations in western Japan, when the planes often fly very close to - if not right above - the mountain. Flights from western Japan in the direction of Haneda Airport usually pass further south, but can still provide nice views.
From hot spring baths
One of the most relaxing ways to see Mount Fuji is from an onsen bath. While a few hot spring resort exist near the mountain, there are surprisingly few ryokan and public baths from where you can actually view the mountain while relaxing in the steaming hot water.
Many hot spring baths are scattered around the Fuji Five Lake area, but surprisingly few of them have views of Mount Fuji from their pools. Several ryokan along the northeastern shores of Lake Kawaguchiko offer baths with that luxury, as do the public baths Yurari south of Lake Saiko and Benifuji no Yu near Lake Yamanakako.
The number of hot spring baths with views of Mount Fuji in Hakone is even lower. Among the exceptions is the Green Plaza Hotel near Togendai whose outdoor baths allow the mountain to be viewed when visibility is good. The baths are also open to non-staying guests for an admission fee during limited daytime hours.
From the ski slopes
Two small ski resorts can be found on the lower slopes of Mount Fuji that offer skiers and snowboarders a unique view of the mountain as they barrel down its slopes.
The larger of the two ski resorts on Mount Fuji, Fujiten Snow Resort lies along the northern base of the mountain, and its facilities offer some nice views of the peak. The park has a good selection of runs for its size, as well as a large kids park.
Located on the south slopes of the mountain, Snow Town Yeti is far from being the largest ski resort in Japan. However, considering that it is the earliest ski resort in the country to open each season (opening around late October, albeit with man-made snow) and one of only two ski resorts on the slopes on Mount Fuji, it may be well worth it for snow fans to keep Snow Town Yeti on their radar.
A 7-minute walk from Lake Kawaguchi, the 2-person cottages at Ururun have a quaint European charm and offer a spa bath with Mount Fuji views. Sleeping arrangements are Japanese-style, with futon bedding on a tatami (woven-straw) floor. Parking is free. Each cottage has a fully equipped kitchen with a microwave and a living area with a sofa, a TV and a DVD player. Each cottage comes with a spa bath with Mount Fuji views. Free Wi-Fi is available. Kawaguchiko Train Station is a 15-minute drive or a taxi ride and Fuji-Q Highland amusement park is a 15-minute drive away. Kawaguchi Asama shrine is a 10-minute walk from the property, and Nishikawa Bus Stop is a 3-minute walk. In warm weather, guests can unwind out on the patio.
Set in Fujikawaguchiko, 5.1 km from Lake Kawaguchi, 22 km from Mount Fuji and 4.2 km from Lake Kawaguchi Ohashi Bridge, 富士ファブリック ステイ offers accommodation with a balcony and free WiFi. Situated 3.1 km from Fuji-Q Highland, the property features a terrace and free private parking. Offering 2 bedrooms, this air-conditioned holiday home features 1 bathroom with a shower, a bath and free toiletries. The holiday home also includes a well-equipped kitchen with a fridge, a microwave and a stovetop, as well as a hairdryer. Mount Kachi Kachi Ropeway is 4.7 km from the holiday home, while Fujiomuro Sengen Shrine is 4.7 km from the property. The nearest airport is Shizuoka Airport, 121 km from 富士ファブリック ステイ.
Set in Fujikawaguchiko, 4.8 km from Lake Kawaguchi, Fufu Kawaguchiko offers accommodation with a garden, free private parking, a shared lounge and a terrace. Among the facilities of this property are a restaurant, room service and a 24-hour front desk, along with free WiFi throughout the property. Guests can use the sauna and the hot spring bath, or enjoy mountain views. The hotel will provide guests with air-conditioned rooms offering a desk, a kettle, a fridge, a minibar, a safety deposit box, a flat-screen TV, a balcony and a private bathroom with a bidet. Fufu Kawaguchiko features certain units with lake views, and rooms include a patio. At the accommodation all rooms are fitted with bed linen and towels. An Asian breakfast is available every morning at Fufu Kawaguchiko. Guests at the hotel will be able to enjoy activities in and around Fujikawaguchiko, like cycling. Fuji-Q Highland is 7.1 km from Fufu Kawaguchiko, while Mount Fuji is 28 km away. The nearest airport is Tokyo Haneda Airport, 124 km from the accommodation.
Boasting views of Mount Fuji and Lake Kawaguchi for all rooms and hot-spring baths, Hotel Asafuji provides air-conditioned Japanese-style rooms with a green tea set. Free WiFi available throughout the hotel and free on-site parking is available. Free pick-up service is available from Kawaguchiko Station upon request. The air-conditioned rooms at Hotel Asafuji have Shoji paper screens and a low table with floor chairs and cushions. Each room includes a fridge, private toilet, and guests bathe at the hot-spring baths. Japanese-style futon bedding on a tatami (woven-straw) floor is provided. Yukata robes are offered for guests. Massages are available, and the reception can store luggage. The public hot-spring baths are open from 06:00-09:30 and from 15:00-23:30 daily. A Japanese set breakfast and kaiseki multi-course dinner are available at the on-site restaurant for an extra fee with an advance reservation. Kawaguchiko Station is a 10-minute drive, while Kawaguchiko Ropeway and Lake Kawaguchi's boat dock is a 3-minute drive away from the hotel. Kawaguchiko Music Forest and Kawaguchiko Museum Of Art is a 7-minute drive. Oishi Parkand is a 10-minute drive away, while Fuji-Q Highland amusement park is a 15-minute drive away.
Renovated in September 2018, Guesthouseほのぼの offers an accommodation with free WiFi in Fujikawaguchiko, 1.3 km from Lake Kawaguchi. Free private parking is available on site on a first-come, first-serve basis as well as prior reservation. Free shuttle service is available upon prior request from the property to Kawaguchiko Station. There is a shared kitchen and lounge at the property. Guests can make some coffee and tea free of charge. You will find a bath made from hinoki cypress, and underfloor heating is provided in the bathroom. Bath amenities including towels, toiletries and toothbrushes are available at the front desk for a fee. Mount Fuji is 16 km from Guesthouseほのぼの, while Shimobe Hot Spring is 26 km away.
Umeya Annex is a Japanese private home run by an oshi, or a religious teacher that guides and assists visitors on pilgrimages. The property is located next to the oshi's home that was built in 1776 and the only one existing in Kawaguchiko. Free WiFi is featured throughout the property. All units are air conditioned and have a flat-screen TV. A microwave and fridge are also provided, as well as a kettle. There is a shared bathroom with a shower in every unit. The Arakura Sengen Shrine and the iconic five storied Chureito pagoda are around 5 km away from the property. The location offers stunning views of Mt Fuji in combination with the pagoda, where guests can also enjoy gazing at cherry blossoms during the spring season. The property is located in Fujikawaguchiko, 2.4 km from Lake Kawaguchi. Mount Fuji is 19 km from the property.
Set in Fujikawaguchiko, 7.1 km from Lake Kawaguchi, Private Hotel Rei offers accommodation with free bikes, free private parking, a garden and a terrace. The 3-star ryokan has air-conditioned rooms with a private bathroom and free WiFi. The property is non-smoking and is situated 10 km from Fuji-Q Highland. All guest rooms at the ryokan come with a seating area and a flat-screen TV. At Private Hotel Rei all rooms include bed linen and towels. The accommodation offers an American or Asian breakfast. Mount Fuji is 31 km from Private Hotel Rei, while Kawaguchi Asama Shrine is 5.6 km from the property. The nearest airport is Matsumoto Airport, 123 km from the ryokan.
Featuring a view of Mount Fuji, Villa Ensoleille offers cosy holiday homes located in Fujikawaguchiko. Boasting seasonal flowers, each building is designed with Southern France architecture in mind. Barbecue facilities are available at an additional charge. Free WiFi is provided throughout the property. The individual cottages or maisonettes are all fitted with air conditioning, heated flooring and a fully equipped kitchen. Kitchen appliances include a fridge, a microwave and IH cooking stoves. Other in-room facilities include a flat-screen TV and a heater. A hot tub is provided in the private bathroom. The Ensoleille Villa provides drinks vending machines. Free parking is available on site. The property is just a 3-minute walk from Lake Kawaguchi. Kawaguchiko Train Station is a 12-minute drive away, and free pick-up shuttles are available if booked in advance.
Set in Fujikawaguchiko, less than 1 km from Lake Kawaguchi, HOSTEL MICHIKUSA-YA offers accommodation with a garden, free private parking and a shared lounge. The 3-star hostel has air-conditioned rooms with a shared bathroom and free WiFi. The accommodation provides a shared kitchen, free shuttle service and luggage storage for guests. The area is popular for cycling, and bike hire is available at this 3-star hostel. Fuji-Q Highland is 4.6 km from the hostel, while Mount Fuji is 25 km away. The nearest airport is Shizuoka Airport, 121 km from HOSTEL MICHIKUSA-YA.
Just a 5-minute walk from Kawaguchiko Station, JINYA Fujikawaguchiko is located in Fujikawaguchiko. Free WiFi, private parking, a washing and drying machine are provided. All units in the hotel are equipped with a kitchenette with a fridge, microwave and an electric kettle. Guest rooms feature air conditioning, a private bathroom and a toilet. Bed linen, towels and a hairdryer are provided. Selected rooms feature a dining table and a sofa. Mount Fuji is 16 km away from the hotel, while Mount Fuji 5th Station is a 65-minute bus ride away.