A view of Mt. Fuji and Japan’s first “sushi theme park.” What more could you need?
This seaside stop is a day trippers’ dream less than two hours south of Tokyo.
Shimizu-ku (not to be confused with the town of Shimizu in the same prefecture) is a ward of Shizuoka city known for its scenic port view of Mount Fuji. It also holds a fish market, green tea field terraces and a stadium where you can see well-known soccer teams.
S-Pulse Dream Plaza
On a clear day in Shimizu, Mount Fuji can be seen from the Ferris wheel at S-Pulse Dream Plaza, a shopping mall complex with a yacht harbor in front of it.
The mall contains a sushi museum, billed as “Japan’s first sushi theme park.” It also has a sushi lane where—similar to the ramen street in Tokyo Station—restaurants battle it out for the reputation of “best.”
Cruises & Kashi-no-Ichi Market
Past the yacht harbor is the Hinode Pier, where the S-Pulse Dream Ferry departs regularly for cruises of the port and Suruga Bay. From here, water buses also depart regularly for the Ejiri Pier. The 10-minute ride will take you straight to Kashi-no-Ichi, a fish market where you can eat fresh kaisendon (seafood and rice bowls) in shops with open kitchens.
The Nihondaira Plateau
S-Pulse Dream Plaza takes its name from the popular Shimizu S-Pulse soccer team, whose home field is in the nearby IAI Stadium Nihondaira. The stadium can be seen from the road while ascending the Nihondaira plateau, which has beautiful green tea fields stretching out over it. Shizuoka is Japan’s largest producer of green tea.
From mid-April to late October, the Nihondaira Ocha Kaikan store even allows visitors to go out into the fields and pick tea themselves for a fee of ¥500. At the top of the plateau is the Nihondaira Ropeway, which will take you to the historic Kunozan Toshogu Shrine.
In Japan, there are many places you can go to get a view of Mount Fuji, but Shimizu holds a lot of other things, too. With Ferris wheel rides, sushi and kaisendon, port cruises, soccer games, and lush green tea fields, it’s definitely a spot worth visiting.