Japan to erect anti-tourist barrier at another viewpoint on Mount Fuji K-Selection
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Japan to erect anti-tourist barrier at another Mount Fuji viewpoint

A tall metal fence will be installed to control unruly tourists who have annoyed locals at a famous Mount Fuji photography spot, a Japanese official said Thursday.

It follows the construction last month of a black screen in another nearby town to block a popular Instagram view of the snow-capped volcano emerging behind a convenience store. Now residents are complaining about visitors, mostly foreigners, who venture up the road to Mount Fuji's Dream Bridge in search of the perfect shot of Japan's highest peak.

Japan to erect anti-tourist barrier at another viewpoint on Mount Fuji K-Selection

Despite its evocative name, the bridge is an ordinary crossing over a river, with a narrow sidewalk separated from the road by a waist-high concrete wall. However, people cross the road outside the crosswalks to reach a vacant area between the two lanes of traffic, said Haruhito Yoshizaki, a tourism official in Fuji City, Shizuoka Prefecture. There, they pose for photos, shoot videos or relax, some even bringing their suitcases. To discourage this risky behavior, authorities have already installed low metal scaffolding and signs asking people to stay away from this stretch of asphalt.

Next, authorities plan to erect a 1,8 meter high wire mesh fence around the area by the end of June. “Locals welcome visitors as long as the basic rules are respected”, Yoshizaki said, adding that the measure aims to ease the frustration of local residents. “Perhaps we could set up a tourist circuit to encourage more respectful exploration”, he added. A pedestrian staircase leading to the bridge also appears in countless photos on Instagram and other platforms, including wedding photos, because from a certain angle it appears to lead to Mount Fuji.

Japan to erect anti-tourist barrier at another viewpoint on Mount Fuji K-Selection

Residents have also complained about tourists parking illegally in the quiet neighborhood, or shouting at each other while taking scenic photos from afar. The Dream Bridge has been around for about a decade, but photo-hungry visitors began flocking there in November, Yoshizaki said. Record numbers of foreign tourists are coming to Japan, and as photos taken there spread on social media, crowds have grown significantly in recent weeks.

This week, the city set up a parking area and toilets near the bridge to ease the burden on residents. Meanwhile, the neighboring town of Fujikawaguchiko in Yamanashi Prefecture plans to replace a black mesh barrier, already in place next to the convenience store, with a stronger material. Several small holes were drilled in the screen intended to prevent people from littering, trespassing illegally and disregarding traffic rules.

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Eun Yoo-ri

Euh.. Jme trompe peut-être mais c’est pas un volcan ?

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