Fancy ‘climbing’ Mt. Fuji without joining the crowds, or even leaving your desk? Now that you can climb Mount Fuji with Google Street View, it is finally possible…

It was late on in March this year that Google released ‘walk-throughable’ images of Fukushima – two years after the 2011 disaster – through its Street View service, giving an eerie insight to an area none of us will likely ever go.

The company’s latest project – other than ongoing updating of the Tokyo streets (Street View cars aren’t that uncommon a sight on the roads around our part of town) – sees the equipment needed to record the imagery loaded into a rather cumbersome looking pack and placed on the back of one (unfortunate?) Google engineer as he climbs Mt. Fuji.

Climbing Mt. Fuji is seen to many as a rite of passage, and now that UNESCO has bestowed World Heritage status on the iconic peak (a fact we don’t have to go far to be reminded of these days!) pretty much guarantees added interest to the project, which comes soon after the rollout in beta mode of Google’s updated Maps service – no coincidence we’re sure.

Whether or not the new World Heritage tag will be boon or burden for Fuji and the surrounding area remains to be seen, but if you haven’t climbed the peak and need to do a little virtual reconnaissance, or simply want to relive a past success, it is well worth logging on and taking a look (click here to get started).

Have a look at the video below to see how lucky Google were with the weather when they decided to record the data, which,  according to the Google Japan Blog, includes around 14,000 panoramic shots taken during an approximately 15km walk split over two days earlier this July.

Image: Krishna.Wu /

by Matthew Holmes