Japan: Tourists damaged Mount Fuji Lawson's black tarpaulin, which was supposed to deter visitors K-Sélection
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Japan: Tourists damaged Mount Fuji Lawson's black tarpaulin, which was meant to deter visitors

Inappropriate behavior persists as tourists find a way around the system. Last week, the town of Fujikawaguchiko, Yamanashi Prefecture, installed a huge black screen to block the view of Mount Fuji, which has become a popular destination for tourists.

The site became famous on social media as a place to capture two very Japanese icons: Mount Fuji and the Lawson store, in a spectacular way that made it look like the store had the volcano on its roof. like a hat. However, this quiet residential area was never intended to be a tourist spot, and problems arose when visitors gathered in large numbers to take photos from outside the dental clinic opposite, disrupting business and locals, with an increase in cases of tourists smoking, littering and crossing the street in an unsafe manner.

Japan: Tourists damaged Mount Fuji Lawson's black tarpaulin, which was supposed to deter visitors K-Sélection

The local municipality responded to residents' complaints by installing a giant tarpaulin 20 meters long by 2,5 meters high in front of the dental clinic to block the desired view. Mayor Hideyuki Watanabe said they made the difficult decision to install the screen for the safety of tourists and residents, hoping to deter tourists from coming. However, less than a week after its installation, around ten small holes were discovered in the screen, each at eye level and measuring approximately one centimeter in diameter, just large enough to insert the lens of a smartphone. .

As the screen is made of a black mesh material, it is not completely waterproof, but with the government now also paying security guards to guard the site, this appears to have been the most cost-effective solution to the problem , provided, of course, that tourists respect the facility and do not seek to circumvent the system.

Although the number of visitors to the site is slowly decreasing, it appears that this soft approach to the problem has not deterred ill-behaved tourists from damaging public property, and if the situation persists, stricter measures may need to be taken. taken. The municipality says it will plug the holes and closely monitor the situation, with a representative saying: “We want people to behave more morally.”

Japan: Tourists damaged Mount Fuji Lawson's black tarpaulin, which was supposed to deter visitors K-Sélection

The government also says it is aware of another potentially problematic site near another convenience store about a kilometer from here, where tourists now congregate. With an increasing number of visitors stopping their cars and taking photos from private property at this site, action may need to be taken there as well.

The mayor is determined to lure people away from these cramped residential areas, stating that: “There are other places in the city where you can enjoy beautiful views of Mount Fuji. We would like to share information about these sites so people can discover them. » There are plans to add a sign with a QR code on the privacy screen, linking to a site featuring these photo spots, to help disperse tourists more evenly throughout the city and avoid overcrowding.

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