The travel industry is stepping up efforts to cash in on Mt. Fuji's listing as a UNESCO World Heritage site, which is expected to create "special demand" just as the summer holiday season nears.
East Japan Railway Co., in collaboration with Fujikyuko Co., will halve the fares for foreign visitors who travel by its trains and buses from Tokyo's 23 wards to the fifth station on Mt. Fuji from July 1. A similar campaign last year sold 1,600 tickets.
"We hope to improve on that figure this year," a JR East official said.
On Sunday, Prince Hotels, Inc. launched a special accommodation plan for 15 rooms at the Prince Hakone in Hakone, Kanagawa Prefecture, that offer a view of Mt. Fuji. The room charge, 22,300 yen per night per person, is about 20 percent lower than the regular price. The "223" figure represents a play on the Japanese pronunciation for "Fujisan" when represented as numerals.
About 1,000 people lined up for the opening of Starbucks in Tottori City on Saturday morning. Tottori Prefecture was the final frontier for the popular coffee shop chain that now has more than 1,000 stores in Japan's 47 prefectures. (Japan Today)
Fugu pufferfish that make beautiful "crop circles" on the seabed off Amami-Oshima island in Kagoshima Prefecture have been chosen as one of the top 10 new species for 2015 by an international research institute, according to the National Museum of Nature and Science. (The Japan News)
Okayama Prefectural Police have launched an attempted murder investigation following the shooting of two organized crime members outside a hostess club in Tamano City early Saturday morning, reports the Sankei Shimbun. (Tokyo Reporter)
In a crackdown on overcharging of customers, Tokyo Metropolitan Police on Friday announced the bust of two hostess clubs in Shinjuku Ward for overcharging customers, reports the TBS News (May 22). (Tokyo Reporter)
Pedestrian crosswalk laws are all over the place no matter where you go. What's considered jaywalking varies by country, and in the U.S. each state has its own laws for exactly how far the pedestrian needs to have crossed on the crosswalk before you have to stop. (rocketnews24.com)