I guess I’m really super lucky to be given the chance to visit Japan twice this year despite being like super busy in my day job. Maybe it’s kind of like a reward after all that hard work I have done and am still doing. Well, after drawing a ‘bad’ and ‘super bad’ fortune lot back in my trip in March, things kind of improved and in my recent trip, I drew a ‘good’ and ‘super good’ fortune lot! To add on to the joy, I was blessed with an amazing weather during my trip! Prior to the trip, I did pray, hope and wish every night for the good weather and.. oh wells I’m really thankful.
Good weather = higher chance of sighting Mt Fuji from Tokyo
Guess where and when did I first sight Mt Fuji in my trip?
1. From the Window Seat on the Plane
When taking plane rides, I usually request for the window seat because I don’t usually need to visit the restroom when I’m in flight. This means that I don’t have to disturb anyone or be disturbed. Anyway, I was taking a red-eye flight, so I kind of concuss on the plane after watching the super boring Fireworks movie (seriously don’t even bother). When I woke up, it was daylight already and I even slept through my meal!
(Random joke: The staff asked if I wanted a drink so I said Green Tea, Cold. The staff asked again and I said ‘Cold’. She then came back with Coke. I had breakfast with coke..)
In the process of me trying to open my eyes, I happen to see this little triangle in the distance among the clouds. A part of me was like.. ohmy, is that the legendary Mt Fuji from the plane or have I not woken up from dreamland yet? I struggled to keep my eyes open and through the fuzzy image in my mind, I decided to take some photos and soon after.. there was an announcement from the crew, telling us that if we look out of the left window, we could see Mt Fuji. I was like.. ohmy, I’m not dreaming! You can actually really see Mt Fuji from the plane! Basically, if you ain’t sitting at the window seat, or the one beside, it is kind of impossible to see Fuji-san.
If I am not wrong, we were about -90 mins from landing at Narita. I’m not sure if it will be the same case if you land at Haneda. Also, fuji-san sighting is more likely in the winter months plus, it was early in the morning at about 6/7am (where the skies are usually clearer). Don’t know why but the sighting of Mt Fuji from my window seat made me feel so lucky and I guess it sets the precedence for the rest of my trip. Well, good luck to you!
2. From Enoshima
Most people have heard of and visited Kamakura (for the famed Buddha) but I’m like 1000% more interested in its neighbour, Enoshima. Enoshima, belonging to Fujisawa-city, lies along the coastal area which is south-west from Tokyo. It only takes about 1.5 hours of travelling time and a large majority gives it a ‘day trip’ at most but I kind of fell in love with this place and it’s highly likely that I’m gonna make repeated visits everytime I am in Tokyo.
Mt Fuji sighting in Enoshima is not a certainty, but a chance of both good weather and luck. Well, I initially added this location into my plans because I saw beautiful photos of Mt Fuji on Google Maps, tagged to this place, and I knew I had to give it a try.
After completing one temple in Kamakura (will write in more details in a separate post), I headed over to Enoshima Island at 3pm+, wanting to catch the sunset at 4:30PM. I am not kidding you. The sun sets so early in December (winter).
Your first chance of sighting Fuji-san will be while you are walking across the bridge (okay it’s nothing like a bridge, just a walkway).
Though it was a very slight faint contour shadow, I was happy enough. There were others that don’t even get to see the faint lines.
Upon reaching the island, I bought the escalator pass cause I couldn’t waste my efforts climbing up the stairs. Alright fine; I was lazy. The pass brings you up faster to the top and I kind of had to quicken my steps in order to catch sunset right at the top. chiong~~
Initially, I had no plans to enter the Samuel Cocking (it’s his last name, and it is not a typo for cooking) Garden + the actual sea candle as I thought that it would be fine. HOWEVER, the remaining vantage points left for me to get a good view of sunset and Fuji was.. none. Everyone else (it was a Sunday) were already camping at their spots by the time I reached. There was barely enough space for me to snap a photo, let least set up my tripod for a time lapse.
So.. I decided to make a mad rush for the garden + sea candle (the lighthouse) (500Y in total). Reached ‘just in time’ for sunset. Intitially, I was on the highest floor (open-air) but it was too crowded and cold, so I went down to the sheltered area and setup my tripod against a ledge. After carrying the tripod in my backpack since 9am, I finally had a used case. Time lapse was taken on S120, the miniature function which is on a x10 speed. It probably took about 20-25 minutes to film this 2 min video. Note: As I was behind a glass, there’s this random line across, and occasional reflections walking around.
Post-sunset silhouette <3
3. From Shichirigahama Station
Despite being in close proximity with Enoshima, Shichirigahama is actually part of Kamakura, the Kanagawa Prefecture.
Well, this place wasn’t originally in my plans but I asked a friend to google ‘best view of mt fuji in enoshima’ and she found a photo from shichirigahama dated 2013. She was like err.. you can try but lower your expectations. Anyway, she told me there was this famous pancakes place at the station too. I shouldn’t be describing my day so much as there will be a separate entry.. heh. Shall let the photos speak for itself.
View from the balcony of Bills.
After breakfast, I sat by the shore for about 30-45 mins with my 24-inch luggage behind me. It was such an amazing feeling to waste time. I didn’t have much plans. The only plan was to check-in at my Tokyo accommodation at 2pm. It was a cool-sunny weather. I needed my shades but the warmth from the sun made the cold bearable. Such an irony but it was as such.
When I left this place, I bid farewell to fuji-san as I didn’t know when would be the last time I could see the mountain again. While I did book an atas hotel with potential fuji-san view (chance is less than 30% a year but higher in winter), there was no guarantee that the hotel will give me my requested room but.. oh that was history. they ended up giving me whatever I wished and requested for. Even the weather was kind to me.
4. From atas high-floor hotel in Tokyo
It was an expensive extravagance that I wanted to treat myself with. Somewhat like a closure to my crazy travels in 2017. So.. what made me decide on booking this place? When I was surfing instagram, I saw a photo of someone with the location tag, saying she surprised herself when she opened the window in the morning and saw Mt Fuji.
You can kind of say that.. instagram brought me here (This happens quite a couple of times for me in most of my recent travels).
Anyway, so while booking for the room, I indicated a preference for high floor + Mt Fuji facing room. Basically, I asked for the sky but I was only staying in the cheapest available room so it was really a massive gamble on my side. I could have been given a room with no view and cry over my wasted money but.. I have been blessed with good fortune this trip. Really really thankul and grateful.
I was given a room on the highest floor, and with a chance of mt fuji sighting.
Note: When I checked-in in the afternoon, there was no Mt Fuji at all (it usually appears in the morning where there were lesser clouds). I was patient and waited till the next morning and.. I was rewarded with this amazing ‘faint’ view of a very shy Fuji-san.
This was the view I had on the last morning in Tokyo. In fact, it was the best view. I left the hotel feeling happy, delighted and thankful.
Where else can you see Mt Fuji in Tokyo?
According to statistics, you can only see Mt Fuji from Tokyo about 120 days in a year (30%). The chance is a lot higher during winter so actually, don’t keep your hopes too high. It’s better to be surprised than disappointed.
- Mount Takao (Visited this place, will blog about it but I didn’t manage to see Fuji-san when I was there)
- Tokyo Metropolitan Building (free observation deck)
- Tokyo Skytree
- Tokyo Tower
Well, if Mt Fuji is really your dream destination, just head over to Hakone/Kawaguchiko instead! The chance there is much high and in fact, I wrote a blog post about my visit back in May 2016.
Know of any more places where Mt Fuji can be spotted? Do share with me!
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