On April 23, the Ryōgoku Kokugikan sumo hall in Tokyo underwent a massive makeover on Google Maps. Now, the street view reveals a line-up of smiling sumo wrestlers. Once you get past them, you’re free to explore the entire building inside, from the seating area, to the food and souvenir stands and even the sacred dohyō, the ring where the bouts are held. We bring you all the best parts to explore, in easy to navigate clips straight from our page, after the jump.

Cameras attached to Google’s street view tricycle captured these images on December 25 last year. In a rare move by a professional sporting association, 68 of the 70 professional sumo wrestlers from the two highest divisions came out for the event. Zoom in on the photo below to check out the current reigning yokozuka champions, Shō Hakuhō and Kōhei Harumafuji, in the very centre. They look no less intimidating than they do in the ring, making us wonder if they’re really waving or just holding up their hands in a don’t-mess-with-me-pose.

The greeting from the wrestling lineup hopes to use the popularity of Google Maps to promote the professional world of sumo on a global scale. Two wrestlers, Daiki Toyonoshima and Ryūji Aminishiki, upped the ante by joining hands to make a love heart, showing that even the toughest of giants have a soft side.

Once you get inside the building, you can walk around the entire complex. Great to get your bearings before an upcoming visit:

Get your shopping list ready and beat the crowds on the day:

Check out the view from your seat before you arrive:

Do the unthinkable and get a view from the sacred wrestling ring:

We spent hours exploring all the nooks and crannies of the sumo hall and we know you will too! Enjoy!

Source: Google Maps
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