Japan’s most iconic mountain is just about 100km distant from central Tokyo. With its spectacular view across the skyline of Shinjuku, the Bunkyo Civic Center is one of the city’s top vantage points (see snapshot above). The building’s top-floor observation platform is open Mon–Fri, 9am–8:30pm; admission is free.
Despite its great views, the observatory is one of Tokyo’s lesser frequented platforms. Bunkyo is your place if you want to escape the rush on the city’s better-known lookouts like Mori Tower, Tokyo Skytree, or Tokyo Tower,
With its peak being surrounded by clouds more often than not, it seems as if Fuji was hiding from visitors. Locals call the mountain “shy” for that. The visibility problem, however, is man-made, at least to some extent. There are a couple of big paper mills alongside Fuji River, discharging large amounts of vapor. Anyway, chances to spot Mt. Fuji are best after some strong rainfall, when the haze is washed away from the air.