Mount Fuji Japan Viewpoints – Mount Fuji is one of the greatest landmarks across the entirety of Japan, so planning a trip to visit the monumental mountain during your first, second, and/or third visit is pretty much a given.
You’ve seen the stunning image across the internet, witnessed countless friends and family come back from their visit describing it in awe, and now it’s your turn to experience one of the biggest wonders of Japan.
One thing that often isn’t described enough in articles about Mount Fuji is that you don’t actually need to head to the mountain to be able to witness it. It’s actually that big that you can witness it even a few hundred kilometres away.
For some, it might be obvious that you’d be heading to a viewpoint rather than the base, but for most, this wouldn’t actually occur to them, and so in this article we’re going to highlight some of the 10 best Mount Fuji viewpoints that you can pick and choose from.
All are easily accessible and offer stunning views on most days (as with all experiences with natural landmarks, make sure you check the weather to see if it will be bright and sunny or dreary and cloudy as this will make a massive difference).
Where To See Mount Fuji in Japan – The 10 Best Viewpoints
- Fuji Q Highland Amusement Park
- Chureito Pagoda
- Lake Kawaguchi
- Lake Yamanaka
- Lake Sai
- Lake Shoji
- Lake Motosu
- Fuji Shibazakura
- Miho Beach
Mount Fuji Japan Viewpoint #1 – Hakone
Hakone is one of the best and most popular choices to try and get a glimpse of Mount Fuji because of a number of things: it’s close and very easy to travel to from Tokyo, it’s actually a gorgeous little onsen village itself, and it offers a plethora of fun activities to do while you’re there. Whilst we do recommend an overnight visit there at one of the spectacular onsen if you do visit, Hakone can easily be done in one day, so there’s an option for everyone.
The best way to get a view of Mount Fuji in Hakone is at Lake Ashi. One a nice and clear day, the famous tip of the mountain will be peering over the clouds and the surrounding hills and mountains, and you will a) be stunned by its beauty, and b) be amazed by how you can see even from a few hours away.
How to Get to Hakone
From Tokyo Station, take the Tokaido Shinkansen to Odawara Station. From there, alight and take the Hakone Tozan train and get off at Hakone Itabashi Station. The first half is covered by the JR Pass but the second half is not. Overall, the trip takes roughly under two hours.
If you prefer to travel to Hakone with a guided tour, you can book this Day Trip.
Where to Stay in Hakone – Hotel Green Plaza Hakone
As one of the most popular hotel options in the area, the Hotel Green Plaza Hakone does not disappoint in any aspect, especially not in the views of Mount Fuji Department. On one of its better days, you will be able to relax in the open-air onsen baths and witness Mount Fuji in all its glory. The hotel also offers modern western and traditional Japanese rooms to choose from, buffet style meals, and is within distance to a number of different attractions.
Book It Now: Hotel Green Plaza Hakone
If you are looking for more amazing accommodation options in Hakone, make sure to read this blog post: Ryokan in Hakone with Private Onsen.
Mount Fuji Japan Viewpoint #2 – Fuji Q Highland Amusement Park
For die-hard extreme sports enthusiasts, or those who just want a bit of an unconventional experience, why not hang upside-down to check out Mount Fuji. At none other than the popular Fuji-Q Highland, Japan’s premier amusement park destination for some of the craziest roller-coaster rides, you’ll be able to do just that!
Fuji-Q Highland has gained supreme popularity with those in the young crowd for offering adrenaline-rushing, high-speed ride experiences that are synonymous with Japan’s superior technology and unique way of doing things. Whilst this amusement park is known for its extensive offering of roller-coaster rides, there are other activities to take part in there as well (such as a haunted house!).
Just remember: you’ll need to peel your eyes open on the rides if you want to actually catch a glimpse of Mount Fuji!
How to Get to Fuji-Q Highland
Mount Fuji Japan Viewpoint #3 – Chureito Pagoda
An absolute classic option on this list to catch a glimpse of Mount Fuji would be to head to the Chureito Pagoda at the top of Arakura Sengen Shrine. This five-story pagoda offers one of the most stunning views of Mount Fuji due to its elevation above the ground as well as the view of the surrounding village leading up to the base of the mountain. On a bright and sunny day, you will be able to capture all the details of the sprinkling of thousands of surrounding houses with the famous snow-tipped mountain top in the background.
The most popular time to head to Chureito Pagoda would be during the cherry blossom season when the sakuras cover the floors and frame your images perfectly. However, expect there to be an enormous crowd there every day during this beautiful period, so either time your visit accordingly to avoid crowds, or try your luck during another time. Note: try not to head there during the middle of the day as the harsh sunlight does not do photos any favours.
Getting to Chureito Pagoda: From Shinjuku, take the JR Chuo line to Otsuki Station. From there, take the Fujikyuko Line to Shimoyoshida. You will need to walk 20-minutes to the pagoda.
For more information about this place, check out this blog post: Chureito Pagoda.
Mount Fuji Japan Viewpoint #4 – Lake Kawaguchi
Easily one of the most popular spots to take in views of Mount Fuji, Lake Kawaguchi also offers a place to unwind, relax to the sound of lapping water, have a picnic with your better half, cycle leisurely around the lake, and explore little quintessentially Japanese attractions such as the Kawaguchiko Music Forest.
The best place to take in views of Mount Fuji would be from the north-eastern section of the lake, closeby to the Kawaguchiko Music Forest. It’s the most popular in spring (surprise, surprise), when sakura blossoms line the lakeside and present an absolutely breathtaking imagery of the mountain. However, during autumn the momiji leaves burst into colour and also offer a picturesque opportunity.
How to Get to Lake Kawaguchi
From Shinjuku Station, head to Otsuki Station, and alight there for a train to Kawaguchiko Station. All up, the trip should take just over two hours. From Kawaguchiko Station, take the Omni Bus Red Line (Kawaguchiko Line) to Kawaguchiko Music Forest. This should take 25-minutes.
If you want to travel to Lake Kawaguchi with a tour, you can book this one online.
Where to Stay Near Lake Kawaguchi – Fuji Lake Hotel
For a premium stay right at the heart of Lake Kawaguchi is the Fuji Lake Hotel, complete with larger-than-average rooms, gorgeous lakeside or mountain views, a free public onsen bath, a seasonal pool, and even additional massage and facial services upon request. On a nice and clear day, you can be resting in a steaming hot onsen, recharging your body battery with the most spectacular view of Mount Fuji right outside your window. This lake is also close to Fuji-Q Highland – what a bonus!
Book It Now: Fuji Lake Hotel
Mount Fuji Japan Viewpoint #5 – Lake Yamanaka
Another ‘Fuji Five Lakes’ addition to the list, Lake Yamanaka is located on the easternmost section of all the lakes. Although its sister, Lake Kawaguchi, is often the most popular option, Lake Yamanaka is actually the largest of all the lakes. On a good day, you will be able to spot Mount Fuji from most viewpoints around the lake, however, the northern shore probably offers the best opportunity for undisturbed views.
If you’re visiting Lake Yamanaka, make sure you look into other activities in the area that might interest you, such as fishing and water skiing, and tennis and even camping! There are also a few onsen sprinkled around the lake.
How to Get to Lake Yamanaka
There are many buses that operate directly from Shinjuku to Lake Yamanaka. The trip will cost 2,300 yen and will take approximately two and a half hours. You can book your bus ticket at this website.
Mount Fuji Japan Viewpoint #6 – Lake Sai
Lake Sai is yet another additional from the ‘Fuji Five Lakes’ group. However, it’s definitely one of the smaller, less developed options. In saying that, it does not (at all) affect the gorgeous five-star view of Mount Fuji you can get from the lakeside. This lake is more popular with locals than with tourists, so if crowds are not your thing, consider this option.
One of the best places to try and capture Mount Fuji is whilst visiting Saiko Iyashi-no-Sato Nemba, which is a quaint historical village-turned open-air museum, situated along the shores of Lake Sai. It’s retained its gorgeous countryside look (think thatched rooftops and lots of greenery) and feel which makes it a wonderful place to capture rustic images with a backdrop of Mount Fuji.
How to Get to Lake Sai
Catch a bus from Shinjuku Station to Kawaguchiko Station (you can book your bus ticket at this website), and from there, take the Omni Bus Green Line which will take you around Lake Sai. Alight at Iyashi no Sato.
Mount Fuji Japan Viewpoint #7 – Lake Shoji
As the smallest lake of the famous Fuji Five Lakes group, Lake Shoji often doesn’t get as much rep or love as the others. However, some vigorously believe that viewpoints here offer the most spectacular sights of Mount Fuji. It’s relatively remote, which means it’s always less crowded, however during most evenings you’ll find people gathered at the western side of Lake Shoji in hopes of capturing the sunset with Mount Fuji.
View this post on Instagram
How to Get to Lake Shoji
Catch a bus from Shinjuku Station to Kawaguchiko Station (you can book your bus ticket at this website), and from there, take the Omni Blue or Retro line to Lake Shoji. Be warned that buses run much less frequently than other lines, departing only a few times a day.
Where to Stay in Lake Shoji – Yamadaya Hotel
Lakeside views of Lake Shoji with mountains in the background make this ryokan hotel the perfect place to relax and recharge at for a few days. It offers all the amenities required for a comfortable stay such as a cosy shared lounge, a paid parking area, flatscreens in all rooms, and even an onsen. Morning and evening walks around the lake are a must.
Book It Now: Yamadaya Hotel
Mount Fuji Japan Viewpoint #8 – Lake Motosu
As the last contender from the Fuji Five Lakes group, you’re probably wondering why you may have never heard of this lake before. It may be largely due to the fact that it’s the most under-developed of all the lakes in terms of catering towards tourists and visitors, and therefore throughout the year it doesn’t welcome as many people. However, the view of Mount Fuji from its north-western lakeside is so breathtaking, it’s actually the image that you see on the Japanese 1,000 yen note. Whilst we wouldn’t suggest relying on public transport to get there, which may make it difficult for most people, it’s a great place if you’re really looking for peace and quiet, gorgeous views, and to get in touch with nature.
How to Get to Lake Motosu
Catch a bus from Shinjuku Station to Kawaguchiko Station (you can book your bus ticket at this website), and from there, catch a regular bus bound for either Shin-Fuji, Shimobe Onsen or Motosu and alight at Lake Motosu. The trip will take 30-45 minutes. Please note that the buses only stop on the eastern side of the lake. If have a rental car, it will be easier to access the western lakeside.
Mount Fuji Japan Viewpoint #9 – Fuji Shibazakura
The famous Fuji Shibazakura Festival, held every year from late April to lake May at the Fuji Motosuko Resort in Fujikawaguchiko is the perfect opportunity for people to not only head to the Fuji area to try and capture a glimpse of the famous Mount Fuji, but to also experience one of Japan’s most famous flower festivals as well! Shibazakuras, which are pink mountain phlox flowers, bloom in the tens of thousands here during this period, creating an impressive, massive landscape of different hues of pink which is sure to delight anyone from professional photographers to social media enthusiasts.
How to Get to Fuji Shibazakura
Catch a bus from Shinjuku Station to Kawaguchiko Station (you can book your bus ticket at this website), and from there, there will be a shuttle bus called the Shibazakura Liner which will take you to the festival. It takes 30-minutes and departs once or twice per hour. This shuttle bus only operates during the festival period. For 2,000, you will get a round trip and admission to the festival.
To ease the organisation of the trip, you can also book this cool tour which also includes a ropeway and fruit picking experience.
Mount Fuji Japan Viewpoint #10 – Miho Beach
Further outside of the Fuji area lays Miho Beach in Shizuoka City. You may be surprised to find out that this pine-tree lined beach is actually famous for its views of Mount Fuji. This is the case where close is not necessarily best, as all along Miho Beach’s 3-kilometre black pebble bay, you will be able to witness unobstructed views of Mount Fuji (on a good day!). During the warmer months, we recommend hiking the walking trails around the beach, or hiring a bike and leisurely cycling around the surrounding bike paths.
How to Get to Miho Beach
From JR Shizuoka Station, take the Miho Yamanote Line bus to JR Shimizu and alight at Miho-no-Matsubara Iriguchi. This will take 25-minutes. From there, the walk to Miho Beach is 20-minutes.
Where to Stay in Miho Beach – Ryokan Hagoromo
If you want to stay near Miho Beach, we highly recommend the beautiful Ryokan Hagoromo! You will be able to enjoy a typical Japanese style stay with delicious kaiseki meals, traditional Japanese rooms with tatami and amazing outdoor onsen (rotenburo).
Book here: Ryokan Hagoromo
To be honest, the stunning Mount Fuji will take your breath away wherever you decide to view it from. It’s hard to describe just how impressive it is in real life, and unfortunately, due to the weather associated with Fuji Kawaguchiko, there’s almost no guarantee that the one or two days you plan to spend there will result in witnessing the mountain. However, if you’re able to be a bit flexible with your time, keep tabs on the weather and plan accordingly, then hopefully you’ll be able to capture the view of a lifetime. And if it doesn’t happen the first time…there’s always next time.
If you are looking for a last spot near Mount Fuji, check out the lovely Oshino Hakkai village.