5-speed listening (Overtourism - Level 6)

Town to erect fence to stop Mount Fuji selfies



Medium (British English)

Medium (N. American English)



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Overtourism is causing headaches for authorities and consternation for local residents worldwide. Japan is one country that is battling surging numbers of international tourists. The weaker yen has meant people are flocking to see Japan's numerous World Heritage sites and sample its world-famous cuisine. A town near Mount Fuji has devised a drastic measure to combat the problem of overtourism. Fujikawaguchiko, which is at the foot of Fuji, has become inundated with sightseers who want selfies of themselves in front of a brightly coloured convenience store, with Fuji-san as the backdrop. Local authorities have decided to erect a giant mesh fence to obscure the view of Japan's iconic mountain.

A local official told journalists that the increasing number of tourists was creating problems for residents. These include trash being left in the streets, traffic being blocked, and security guards being employed to marshal selfie takers. The official said of the fence: "It is regrettable that we had to take such measures." She added that it was because of "some tourists who cannot respect rules". The fence will be 20 metres long and 2.5 metres high. Other places in Japan are also battling large numbers of overseas visitors. Locals in the ancient city of Kyoto cannot board increasingly overcrowded buses. Areas of Kyoto have been closed to tourists to prevent people harassing geisha, in a problem dubbed as "geisha paparazzi".

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Overtourism - Level 4  |  Overtourism - Level 5

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