Trip to Japan

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SandyCoin
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PostRe: Trip to Japan
by SandyCoin » Sat Jun 22, 2019 3:30 pm

Looks like the plan for Japan is November. We will arrive in Asia in October and think that as we are in a budget Japan should be an early visit during our time in Asia as it will easily be the most expensive place.

I think we will stay around 2 weeks altogether, so a decent amount of time but not enough to see everything obviously. My brother has given my some ideas but might as well get some more here.

I've never been before so will most likely be doing to "main sights" where ever we end up.

Regarding Tokyo, are there are any specific neighbourhoods that would be good to stay in?

In 2 weeks, what would a very simplified itinerary be? I will probably want to be in Tokyo at least 4 full days. Osaka gets mentioned a lot but I hear the overcrowding is getting really bad now? I know a few here live in Japan so will be interested to hear their ideas.

Is the rail pass worth it if you are only there for 2 weeks, or is it only a real money saver if you are using a lot of train journeys?

Ta

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Corazon de Leon
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PostRe: Trip to Japan
by Corazon de Leon » Sun Jun 23, 2019 11:01 am

Rail pass starts to make its money back after something like two journeys if you’re going quite far in Japan. Also, I stayed near the Senso-Ji shrine in Asakusa for a week and it was a very nice area. Lovely to wander through.

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SandyCoin
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PostRe: Trip to Japan
by SandyCoin » Mon Jun 24, 2019 7:57 am

Corazon de Leon wrote:Rail pass starts to make its money back after something like two journeys if you’re going quite far in Japan. Also, I stayed near the Senso-Ji shrine in Asakusa for a week and it was a very nice area. Lovely to wander through.


Cheers Cora. I imagine I will be doing at least 2 journeys. Would people recommend booking seats for the trains, or can you be a bit spontaneous? I saw it's free to reserve which is pretty cool.

This thread has some really useful stuff in actually. I'll refer back to it lots I'm sure.

I just started checking out airbnb and they seem pretty pricey from what I could tell, even private rooms. I might have to try hotels for once, which will be odd as I've not stayed in a hotel for years.

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Denster
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PostRe: Trip to Japan
by Denster » Tue Jun 25, 2019 12:41 pm

I just booked a double room for 7 nights for 450 quid. It's free cancellation as I'm not guaranteed to go. Its in February.

Booking. Com is pretty decent for Tokyo hotels. I got 7 nights for 380 last July and that was a really nice hotel and location.

Get the kite, Beavis.
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Outrunner
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PostRe: Trip to Japan
by Outrunner » Fri Jul 05, 2019 7:14 pm

SandyCoin wrote:Looks like the plan for Japan is November. We will arrive in Asia in October and think that as we are in a budget Japan should be an early visit during our time in Asia as it will easily be the most expensive place.

I think we will stay around 2 weeks altogether, so a decent amount of time but not enough to see everything obviously. My brother has given my some ideas but might as well get some more here.

I've never been before so will most likely be doing to "main sights" where ever we end up.

Regarding Tokyo, are there are any specific neighbourhoods that would be good to stay in?

In 2 weeks, what would a very simplified itinerary be? I will probably want to be in Tokyo at least 4 full days. Osaka gets mentioned a lot but I hear the overcrowding is getting really bad now? I know a few here live in Japan so will be interested to hear their ideas.

Is the rail pass worth it if you are only there for 2 weeks, or is it only a real money saver if you are using a lot of train journeys?

Ta


I'm just about to go out to ropleplaying club but I'm happy to give more in-depth answers or tips over the weekend.

In brief:

I always stay in Ueno. Mainly because I fly into Narita and it's so easy to get to from there. It's on the Yamanote line too which will get you to most of the key parts of the city

Depending on how far you want to travel I'd definitely fit in Kyoto. Kyoto itself is great (though super popular with tourists). From there you can do easy day trips to Nara, Kobe and Osaka. I've been to Osaka a few times but don't really rate it. I'd say its worth a day trip. Maybe 2 days tops. It's one of only two cities in Japan I didn't gel with (Nagoya being the other one).

If you let me know what sorts of stuff you're interested in happy to make suggestions.

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SandyCoin
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PostRe: Trip to Japan
by SandyCoin » Fri Jul 05, 2019 7:48 pm

Outrunner wrote:
SandyCoin wrote:Looks like the plan for Japan is November. We will arrive in Asia in October and think that as we are in a budget Japan should be an early visit during our time in Asia as it will easily be the most expensive place.

I think we will stay around 2 weeks altogether, so a decent amount of time but not enough to see everything obviously. My brother has given my some ideas but might as well get some more here.

I've never been before so will most likely be doing to "main sights" where ever we end up.

Regarding Tokyo, are there are any specific neighbourhoods that would be good to stay in?

In 2 weeks, what would a very simplified itinerary be? I will probably want to be in Tokyo at least 4 full days. Osaka gets mentioned a lot but I hear the overcrowding is getting really bad now? I know a few here live in Japan so will be interested to hear their ideas.

Is the rail pass worth it if you are only there for 2 weeks, or is it only a real money saver if you are using a lot of train journeys?

Ta


I'm just about to go out to ropleplaying club but I'm happy to give more in-depth answers or tips over the weekend.

In brief:

I always stay in Ueno. Mainly because I fly into Narita and it's so easy to get to from there. It's on the Yamanote line too which will get you to most of the key parts of the city

Depending on how far you want to travel I'd definitely fit in Kyoto. Kyoto itself is great (though super popular with tourists). From there you can do easy day trips to Nara, Kobe and Osaka. I've been to Osaka a few times but don't really rate it. I'd say its worth a day trip. Maybe 2 days tops. It's one of only two cities in Japan I didn't gel with (Nagoya being the other one).

If you let me know what sorts of stuff you're interested in happy to make suggestions.


Great, thanks. Will have a think

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SandyCoin
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PostRe: Trip to Japan
by SandyCoin » Tue Jul 09, 2019 11:52 am

Outrunner wrote:I'm just about to go out to ropleplaying club but I'm happy to give more in-depth answers or tips over the weekend.

In brief:

I always stay in Ueno. Mainly because I fly into Narita and it's so easy to get to from there. It's on the Yamanote line too which will get you to most of the key parts of the city

Depending on how far you want to travel I'd definitely fit in Kyoto. Kyoto itself is great (though super popular with tourists). From there you can do easy day trips to Nara, Kobe and Osaka. I've been to Osaka a few times but don't really rate it. I'd say its worth a day trip. Maybe 2 days tops. It's one of only two cities in Japan I didn't gel with (Nagoya being the other one).

If you let me know what sorts of stuff you're interested in happy to make suggestions.



I think we will be wanting a mix of stuff really. Whilst I am technically a gamer, I'm nowhere near as bad as I used to be. The Japanese game culture these days doesn't overly interest me, but I will certainly head to any areas in Tokyo to arcades or anything like that. Maybe some art galleries would be interesting as I love Japanese paintings (or any other interesting museums. I hear there is a poo museum :lol: ). Basically anything that is very different to Europe is always appealing.

I will be wanting to see some nice peaceful and pretty areas. Also some old samurai towns. Have you been to Kanazawa? It looks like it's on the bullet train line and only a couple of hours from Tokyo, so maybe even a day trip if it's worth it.

Food is important. I've got some ideas, but I know food can be expensive there so will have to be careful as I'll be there 2 weeks or so. My brother said you can get pretty decent ramen at 7-11's so maybe I'll have to grab that a couple of times.

I'm not 100 sure about Hiroshima yet. Have you been? Worth visiting?

I always like to know good etiquette before going to places too. I don't want to get on the locals nerves, like when tourists come to London and block the escalators instead of standing to the right :roll:

Cheers

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Tomous
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PostRe: Trip to Japan
by Tomous » Tue Jul 09, 2019 12:14 pm

Nikko is a really nice day trip you can do from Tokyo if you want nice and peaceful area. Lovely scenery and some impressive shrines and things like that. We really enjoyed it.

Re: food, there is a "fast food" chain called Coco Curry House that do really nice Katsu curries. You'll find them in all the big cities and so if you want something quick and easy and reasonably priced they are a good choice. They were brilliant for us because my partner is vegetarian (they have good veggie options) and allergic to fish (which is really hard to avoid in Japan-everything is cooked in fish oil).

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SandyCoin
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PostRe: Trip to Japan
by SandyCoin » Tue Jul 09, 2019 12:38 pm

Tomous wrote:Nikko is a really nice day trip you can do from Tokyo if you want nice and peaceful area. Lovely scenery and some impressive shrines and things like that. We really enjoyed it.

Re: food, there is a "fast food" chain called Coco Curry House that do really nice Katsu curries. You'll find them in all the big cities and so if you want something quick and easy and reasonably priced they are a good choice. They were brilliant for us because my partner is vegetarian (they have good veggie options) and allergic to fish (which is really hard to avoid in Japan-everything is cooked in fish oil).


I am a fan of Katsu curry. I'll probably grab a decent amount of street food too. Nikko looks nice. Do you know if it's on the bullet line?

Are the temples around much of a much, or are some way more worth visiting than others?

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Minty14
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PostRe: Trip to Japan
by Minty14 » Tue Jul 09, 2019 12:40 pm

SandyCoin wrote:
Outrunner wrote:I'm just about to go out to ropleplaying club but I'm happy to give more in-depth answers or tips over the weekend.

In brief:

I always stay in Ueno. Mainly because I fly into Narita and it's so easy to get to from there. It's on the Yamanote line too which will get you to most of the key parts of the city

Depending on how far you want to travel I'd definitely fit in Kyoto. Kyoto itself is great (though super popular with tourists). From there you can do easy day trips to Nara, Kobe and Osaka. I've been to Osaka a few times but don't really rate it. I'd say its worth a day trip. Maybe 2 days tops. It's one of only two cities in Japan I didn't gel with (Nagoya being the other one).

If you let me know what sorts of stuff you're interested in happy to make suggestions.



I think we will be wanting a mix of stuff really. Whilst I am technically a gamer, I'm nowhere near as bad as I used to be. The Japanese game culture these days doesn't overly interest me, but I will certainly head to any areas in Tokyo to arcades or anything like that. Maybe some art galleries would be interesting as I love Japanese paintings (or any other interesting museums. I hear there is a poo museum :lol: ). Basically anything that is very different to Europe is always appealing.

I will be wanting to see some nice peaceful and pretty areas. Also some old samurai towns. Have you been to Kanazawa? It looks like it's on the bullet train line and only a couple of hours from Tokyo, so maybe even a day trip if it's worth it.

Food is important. I've got some ideas, but I know food can be expensive there so will have to be careful as I'll be there 2 weeks or so. My brother said you can get pretty decent ramen at 7-11's so maybe I'll have to grab that a couple of times.

I'm not 100 sure about Hiroshima yet. Have you been? Worth visiting?

I always like to know good etiquette before going to places too. I don't want to get on the locals nerves, like when tourists come to London and block the escalators instead of standing to the right :roll:

Cheers


Food is pretty easy to get good quality for a good price. All the food in convenience stores is much higher quality than what you would get here, with a lot of variety. CoCo is great for curry and Genki Sushi I found was good for a reasonable price.

I'd recommend doing the Hakone loop which is a simple 1 or 2 day trip from Tokyo. It's pretty cliched to recommend it, but it was my favourite thing I did on my first trip there.

As far as etiquette goes, then just make sure you don't make a nuisance of yourself really; I don't actually think that Japanese day-to-day etiquette is that different from British/Irish, just that far more people actually abide by it :lol: The only common etiquette rule that I found was a real difference from the UK is that eating while walking is a no-no. So, if you grab some food from a 7-11, find a place to stand/sit to eat it (and definitely not on local trains).

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Tomous
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PostRe: Trip to Japan
by Tomous » Tue Jul 09, 2019 12:47 pm

SandyCoin wrote:
Tomous wrote:Nikko is a really nice day trip you can do from Tokyo if you want nice and peaceful area. Lovely scenery and some impressive shrines and things like that. We really enjoyed it.

Re: food, there is a "fast food" chain called Coco Curry House that do really nice Katsu curries. You'll find them in all the big cities and so if you want something quick and easy and reasonably priced they are a good choice. They were brilliant for us because my partner is vegetarian (they have good veggie options) and allergic to fish (which is really hard to avoid in Japan-everything is cooked in fish oil).


I am a fan of Katsu curry. I'll probably grab a decent amount of street food too. Nikko looks nice. Do you know if it's on the bullet line?

Are the temples around much of a much, or are some way more worth visiting than others?


You can get there by shinkansen I believe but there are a number of options with different prices and if you have a pass that will obviously influence it.

The temples there are all really close, it's pretty easy to get there in the morning and spend the day strolling round hitting all the spots.

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Outrunner
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PostRe: Trip to Japan
by Outrunner » Tue Jul 09, 2019 8:54 pm

SandyCoin wrote:I think we will be wanting a mix of stuff really. Whilst I am technically a gamer, I'm nowhere near as bad as I used to be. The Japanese game culture these days doesn't overly interest me, but I will certainly head to any areas in Tokyo to arcades or anything like that. Maybe some art galleries would be interesting as I love Japanese paintings (or any other interesting museums. I hear there is a poo museum :lol: ). Basically anything that is very different to Europe is always appealing.

I will be wanting to see some nice peaceful and pretty areas. Also some old samurai towns. Have you been to Kanazawa? It looks like it's on the bullet train line and only a couple of hours from Tokyo, so maybe even a day trip if it's worth it.

Food is important. I've got some ideas, but I know food can be expensive there so will have to be careful as I'll be there 2 weeks or so. My brother said you can get pretty decent ramen at 7-11's so maybe I'll have to grab that a couple of times.

I'm not 100 sure about Hiroshima yet. Have you been? Worth visiting?

I always like to know good etiquette before going to places too. I don't want to get on the locals nerves, like when tourists come to London and block the escalators instead of standing to the right :roll:

Cheers


Etiquette you'll be fine, eating on the move tends to be frowned up, keep left on the escalators (except in Osaka where it's the right), no talking on the phone on trains. But generally as long as you're not obnoxious you'll be fine.

I enjoyed Hiroshima and normally I'd suggest it for the side trip to Miyajima, however they are doing renovation works on the famous floating Torii gate. I liked Miyajima but this is something to take into account.

Food is great and can be done on the cheap. Definitely give some of the more expensive places a go if you can afford it but don't worry about eating on the cheap. My last trip in March/April I was very budget conscious (six weeks is a long time to be buying meals) and most of my meals were from Lawsons/7-11/FamilyMart. Eating out I went to Coco Curry Sukiya or Yoshinoya.

I went to Kanazawa last trip. It's worth visiting. I stayed a few days but in all honesty a day trip would be enough to see the sights. Nikko is day trippable and I'd personally pick their over Kanazawa (both are worth the trip but I prefer Nikko).

Tokyo is full of arcades, it'll be pretty easy to find them. I'm not really an arty person but there are plenty of museums. I tend to go to castles and history museums (though now I think about it never really in Tokyo for some reason).

For something a bit different maybe the Robot Restaurant? It's very tourist trappy and the on the door prices are too high but you can find deals online (or at least could when I went a few years ago). It's not for everyone but I loved it.

I also suggest www.japan-guide.com as a great resource for holiday planning.

I love Kyoto but as tourism increases it's becoming very busy. The difference from when I first went in 2010 then 2012 compared to this year was very noticable. If you are going there I would advise going to the Inari shrine as early as possible, the crowds are horrendous. Same with Arashiyama Bamboo Grove. I went at 8am and it was still pretty busy. The great thing about Kyoto though is there are tons of temples and many of them get overlooked by the tourists.

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Denster
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PostRe: Trip to Japan
by Denster » Sun Jul 14, 2019 9:04 am

The Sengakuji temple is well worth a visit in Tokyo. Its where the 47 ronin are buried with their master. It was very quiet and reverential there. I loved it. Its a great story too.

Get the kite, Beavis.
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SandyCoin
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PostRe: Trip to Japan
by SandyCoin » Fri Jul 26, 2019 9:59 pm

Booked my flights to Japan. Going for 12 nights, and have booked 4 nights in Tokyo in Ueno area. Prices seem pretty steep for November. Even capsules were around 60 euros a night. The one we got was on Airbnb for an entire apartment for around 340 euros for 2, so not too bad. I'll keep an eye out though in case a good offer appears.

After Tokyo head off to Nikko for the night, then maybe Kanazawa, then off to Osaka. Our plan is to use Osaka as a base when we head west and do day trips to Kyoto etc, as prices in Osaka are really good in comparison.

Looking forward to it :D

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