Perhaps one of the most iconic images of Japan, Mt. Fuji towers above major metropolitan cities and lush green landscapes at over 3,700 meters (12,000 feet.) A perfectly symmetrical cone shape, Mt. Fuji has been revered by Japanese people since ancient times. Despite its almost surreal grandeur, climbing Mt. Fuji is considered a rite of passage for many Japanese, and people from all ages make the trek. In order to witness the most breathtaking views, visitors begin the climb during the early afternoon to catch the sunset, or sometimes climb throughout the night in order to catch the sunrise at the summit. Either choice is inevitably an unforgettable experience, if not for the view, then for the camaraderie and communal spirit of climbing Mt. Fuji with fellow companions.
The nearby city of Shizuoka has been widely regarded to have some of the best seafood in Japan. Suruga Bay is home to many types of fish where maguro (tuna), katsuo (bonito) and famously unagi (eel) are raised in pure water and served with care. This water also serves as the base for Nihonshu, a Japanese rice wine, that goes wonderfully with Shizuoka's fresh fish specialties. Other dishes such as Fujinomiya Yakisoba (fried noodles), Shizuoka Oden (soy-based soup) and Hamamatsu Gyoza (friend dumplings) are also famous among Shizuoka locals. So visit Mt. Fuji and the surrounding city of Shizuoaka to experience some of the most breathtaking scenery in the world, and treat your senses to everything Japan has to offer.
A stay in one of Shizuoka's many luxury ryokan would only add to this wonderful Japanese experience. Outdoor hot springs with picturesque views of Mt. Fuji provide an ideal locale for peace and relaxation. Travel to the resort town of Hakone for a truly opulent experience, where the views of Mt. Fuji from its various hot springs are perfect. Or, if an island getaway is what you're looking for, travel to the Izu Peninsula just south of Mt. Fuji, where beautiful coastal scenery serves as the backdrop to its numerous hot spring resorts.