Mount Fuji is introducing new rules for the 2024 climbing season, including trail fees and caps on climbers. The measures, which come into effect on July 1, aim to protect both hikers and the environment, in the face of “overtourism”. Here’s what you need to know.

Every year, hundreds of thousands of hikers make their way up and down Mt. Fuji’s slopes. Climbers often report queues, litter, and irresponsible behavior. “We’re worried about a domino-effect accident,” said Yamanashi Prefecture governor Kotaro Nagasaki, at a press conference explaining the new rules.

Governor Nagasaki cited myriad issues, including: excessive crowding near the summit; climbers lighting bonfires and sleeping along the paths; and “bullet climbing” — where people go straight to the top without taking a break, thereby heightening the risk of hypothermia and altitude sickness. The new measures are intended, above all, to “safeguard the lives of climbers”, he said.

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2024 fees and rules for Mt. Fuji

The following rules apply from July 1, 2024. The official climbing season is from July 1 until September 10 for the Yoshida Trail — that’s the route the majority of these rules apply to.

Trail fee

All climbers taking the Yoshida Trail — the main route up Mt. Fuji — will be required to pay ¥2,000 to pass through specially installed gates at the fifth station. This is the first time in history that the trail will be gated. The trail toll fees will be used for maintenance.

Additionally, climbers will be asked to pay an optional conservation fee of ¥1,000. Previously, only the optional conservation fee applied. Note: Cashless payment is possible for both fees.

Important: The trail fee does not include a mountain-hut reservation; it is totally different from accommodation. Mountain huts on Mt. Fuji must be reserved — and paid for — separately.

Online reservations for the Mt. Fuji Yoshida Trail

You can book and pre-pay your trail fee on the official Mt. Fuji website. Though not required, it is strongly recommended. 3000 daily slots will be available for online reservation, with the remaining 1000 available to climbers on the day. Group reservations for up to 100 people are accepted online.

Climbers with prior reservations will be able to pass through the fifth-station gate quicker and more easily than those without, who will need to pay their trail fees on the day.

Reservations opened on May 20. You can make a reservation until 11:59 p.m. of the day before your climb, but reservations will close as soon as the number hits 3000, so — the earlier, the better. Note that you’ll still need to get through the gate before 4:00 p.m. (unless you have a mountain-hut reservation).

Other trails

Climbers taking the other trails — the Subashiri, Gotemba or Fujinomiya trails — will only be asked to pay the optional conservation fee of ¥1,000. However, in the interest of safety, they will be required to submit a climbing plan online in advance (the website is expected to be announced in late June).

Caps

The number of climbers allowed on the Yoshida Trail will be limited to 4000 per day during the official climbing season. However, this cap will not apply to climbers with mountain-hut reservations.

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Time restrictions

Night climbing will not be allowed, and the Yoshida Trail will be closed from 4:00 p.m to 3:00 a.m. every day. Those with mountain-hut reservations will be allowed through the gate, but they are encouraged to go through earlier, for safety.

Note: Climbers taking the other trails will be asked to show proof of mountain-hut reservation to be allowed to pass through after 4:00 p.m.

Mt. Fuji rangers

A number of “Mt. Fuji optimization rangers”, or mountain guides, will be present. They will have the authority to intervene where climbers fail to abide by the rules.

FAQs

How many people climb Mt. Fuji?

In 2023, 221,322 people climbed Mt. Fuji, with 137,236 of them using the Yoshida Trail.

Why did it take so long to introduce restrictions?

The Yoshida Trail was classified as a prefectural road, previously, meaning it required unimpeded access under Japanese law. The trail had to be recategorized, in a way, in order for gates to be installed and restrictions put in place.

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What other measures are being considered?

Every year, millions of visitors and tens of thousands of vehicles ascend and descend Mt. Fuji. There is concern that the UNESCO World Heritage site will lose the beauty and serenity that make it such a historically sacred place. The prefectural government is considering various measures in response, including a new rail transit system, as well as the revival of ancient, alternative climbing routes in a bid to decentralize and decongest the hikes.

Other Mt. Fuji resources

While we do our best to ensure it’s correct, information is subject to change.

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