Japan’s list of Unesco World Heritage sites could rise to 13 if Mount Fuji gets added to the list when the UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee meets in Cambodia next month. Mount Fuji or Fuji-san/Fuji-yama as it is called by the locals has been a cultural, spiritual, artistic and geographic icon in Japan for hundreds of years. It is the tallest mountain in Japan and an active volcano that last erupted in the early 1700s.
Mount Fuji is being considered as a “cultural” heritage site, rather than a “natural” heritage site by UNESCO. UNESCO’s World Heritage programme is governed by an international treaty intended to “encourage the identification, protection and preservation of cultural and natural heritage around the world considered to be of outstanding value to humanity.”
Mount Fuji was one of the major attractions I was unable to visit while I was in Japan, although I did manage to see it from Tokyo on a clear day and while riding the bullet train very early in the morning. After my experience hiking Jamaica’s own tallest mountain (Blue Mountains) which is only 2256m tall, I don’t think I’ll be able to tackle Fuji-san’s 3,776m height.
Fujisan is Japan’s highest mountain, a graceful conical stratovolcano that represents and symbolizes Japan itself, and is an exceptional cultural landscape deeply associated with Japanese mountain worship and the country’s artistic and literary tradition. Throughout the ages, it is impossible to find a comparable example of a mountain so deeply integrated into the bedrock of a nation’s culture – UNESCO
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