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Tour This Japanese City from the Viewpoint of a Cat

New “cat street view” shows Hiroshima Prefecture’s Onomichi through the eyes of its fluffiest residents

smithsonian.com

Even the most casual observer can see that Japan has a thing for felines. Now, reports Margarita Noriega for Vox, the city of Onomichi is cashing in on cat-mania with a “cat street view” aimed at growing tourism.

The Google street view-style map gives a tour of the city from the eyes of a furry feline, reports Noriega, and features multiple routes through the city along with indicators of where different pet cats can be found. Along the way, virtual visitors can experience the colorful city streets of Onomichi from a much shorter and slinkier perspective.

Why Onomichi? The Wall Street Journal’s Jun Hongo explains that the town is home to a museum dedicated to another one of Japan’s cutest cat icons: the waving good-luck cat called the Maneki-neko. Hiroshima Prefecture’s website notes that Onomichi’s Maneki-neko museum is located at the end of the so-called “Path of Cats,” a road teeming with oh-so-cute kittens.

Tourism officials in Onomichi used 360-degree cameras like the ones used by non-cat Google Maps, writes Hongo. Check out the map for a reminder that it’s really a cat’s world — you just happen to be allowed to live in it.

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