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Old 18th June 2012, 4:11 PM   #61
Frontl1ne
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Wow, thanks for all the info guys! This is the second time you've helped me out with this trip too a777

I'll be reviewing the itinerary soon


Quote:
Originally Posted by chainbolt View Post
Kabukicho is the red light district and only interesting at night.
Just thought I'd point out that it is my friend who wants to go to Kabukicho (he wants to go there because some Yakuza game he plays was apparently set there or something along those lines!). I'm not particularly excited going there after doing a bit of research

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If you are in Ueno you MUST visit Tokyo Sky Tree, the world highest TV Tower - magnificent. It's in Sumida ward, can be easily reached from Asakusa.
Yeahh! They unveiled the sky tree after I was done with the draft itinerary, but definitely looking to go there too.


Thanks again for all the help guys !

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Old 18th June 2012, 5:14 PM   #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frontl1ne View Post
Just thought I'd point out that it is my friend who wants to go to Kabukicho (he wants to go there because some Yakuza game he plays was apparently set there or something along those lines!). I'm not particularly excited going there after doing a bit of research
Actually, I would not go there.
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Old 18th June 2012, 6:20 PM   #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frontl1ne View Post
Wow, thanks for all the info guys! This is the second time you've helped me out with this trip too a777
No worries!

Kabukicho is fine if you just want to wander through it at night time. Just avoid most of the touts.
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Old 22nd June 2012, 8:25 AM   #64
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Originally Posted by Frontl1ne View Post
Yeahh! They unveiled the sky tree after I was done with the draft itinerary, but definitely looking to go there too.
There are alternatives to Skytree, such as the 2 observatory decks of "Tokyo City Hall" in Shinjuku, "Tokyo Tower" in Minato-ku, or "Sunshine Building" in Ikebukuro. To have a look from high-up is a must to understand how "vast" Tokyo city is.

Until now I have taken my visitors from abroad to the observatory decks Tokyo City Hall. Entrance is free, the buildings architecture is interesting, and it's close to the Shinjuku shopping area.

Last edited by chainbolt; 22nd June 2012 at 5:09 PM.
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Old 25th June 2012, 9:46 AM   #65
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Jetstar Sale now on

Gold Coast to Osaka/Tokyo return for $420 (9 April 2013 - 22 June 2013)
Sydney to Osaka return for $520 (1 May 2013 - 19 June 2013)
Melbourne to Osaka/Tokyo return for $520 (1 May 2013 - 19 June 2013)
Cairns to Osaka/Tokyo return for $320 (9 April 2013 - 22 June 2013)

Checked luggage is roughly $70 extra return.

Obviously, you can connect to those cities if you are elsewhere.

April 9 is usually just at the peak/end of the Cherry Blossom Season for Kyoto/Tokyo.
Japan-guide report on Kyoto on April 9, 2012
Japan-guide report on Tokyo on April 9, 2012

General Sakura Information. Some good viewing especially north in Tohoku or Hokkaido if you go a bit later.

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Old 26th June 2012, 11:50 AM   #66
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Good thread! Wish I saw this earlier.
I've been in Japan for about a week so far, and deciding where to go today!
The weather is beautiful! Blue skies and sunshine, though I preferred yesterdays cold cloudy day for walking!
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Old 26th June 2012, 11:53 AM   #67
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Good thread! Wish I saw this earlier.
I've been in Japan for about a week so far, and deciding where to go today!
The weather is beautiful! Blue skies and sunshine, though I preferred yesterdays cold cloudy day for walking!
Where are you now? What have you seen so far? Got a rail pass? How many more days do you have? What is in the rest of your schedule?
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Old 26th June 2012, 12:51 PM   #68
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Where are you now? What have you seen so far? Got a rail pass? How many more days do you have? What is in the rest of your schedule?
I'm in Tokyo.
Apart from shops, so far I've seen
Kawasaki (Muza Kawasaki Symphony Hall)
Roppongi (Big spider)
Ginza
Shinjuku
Harajuku (on a Sunday to Yoyogi Park, Takeshita dori, Meiji Shrine) then walked to Shibuya (just a couple of times outside the station, saw a Hachiko and a scramble)
Yokohama
Around Imperial Palace and East Gardens
I don't have a rail pass.

I have got 14 days left
I'll check out Akihabara and Odaiba today.
I really enjoy going on-foot.
Hike up Fuji in July.
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Old 26th June 2012, 1:15 PM   #69
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I don't have a rail pass.

I have got 14 days left
I'll check out Akihabara and Odaiba today.
I really enjoy going on-foot.
Hike up Fuji in July.
Lots of time. Is your accommodation already booked in Tokyo?

You could consider overnight buses to Kyoto/Osaka and back. You should be able to book them at the bus terminal near the west exit of Shinjuku Station. Most economical way to go to Kyoto and back. You can also book online with Willer Express.
Highway Buses:-
www.japan-guide.com/e/e2366.html

Also, I would strongly recommend a day trip or an overnight trip to a variety of places.
Nikko
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e3800.html
You can get the Tobu Nikko passes from Asakusa Station (Tourist office nearby) which is quite economical.
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2358_002.html

If you are hiking up Fuji I assume you are going via Kawaguchiko 5th station?
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e6906.html

You could also consider a day trip to Hakone and do the Hakone Round Course (or overnight in an onsen/ryokan)
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e5200.html
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e5210.html

I think Kamakura makes a really nice day trip, lots of hiking trails here and plenty of places to walk as it can be a bit spread out. You may also wish to overnight here, but it is quite close to Tokyo so easy enough to return too.
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2166.html

If you want something a bit more obscure off the beaten path then we had an awesome trip to Nokogiriyama, this was the place used as the destination in Top Gear in the GTR vs Bullet Train episode. We followed the Hammond and May path by catching the train to Kurihama, then the bus to the Ferry port, then a Ferry across Tokyo Bay to Kanaya, then walk to the ropeway to get to the top. Lots of steps and interesting sites plus the two huge stone Buddhas. Let me know if you want more details on this. Not super easy if you don't know any Japanese but still possible.
Random blog report

You should definitely go to Tsukiji, the Tuna Auction is good if you don't mind getting up early, you probably need to queue at around 4am to get a spot. If you can't get there until later then the market is interesting too. Just have breakfast first then enter the market after 9am. Expect to queue for an hour or so at the popular sushi places.
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e3021.html

Also, if you are going to Fuji via Kawaguchiko and you want to ride a Shinkansen (Bullet train) then you can also purchase the JR Kanto Pass while you are in Japan. You could use this to get to Nikko and back via Shinkansen and then use it to get all the way to Kawaguchiko and back. Also opens up a few other interesting places including Karuizawa and Kusatsu.
JR Kanto Area Pass:-
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2361_06.html

To be honest, with 14 days I'd strongly strongly recommend you spend at least a week in Kansai. Kyoto, Osaka, Nara, Hikone Castle would all be worthwhile places to visit. If you don't want to do the overnight bus then a return Shinkansen ticket is around the same price as a 7-day JR Pass anyway so you won't be spending too much more. You could also consider the Shinkansen one way and the overnight bus the other to keep costs down.
Kyoto
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2158.html
Osaka
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2157.html
Nara
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2165.html
Hikone
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e7000.html

You could base yourself in Osaka or Kyoto and do day trips. I'd probably recommend Kyoto as a base, just as it will provide more contrast to Tokyo. If you love walking there are plenty of nice walks in and around Kyoto.

If you have any questions or want help planning just ask here!

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Old 26th June 2012, 1:30 PM   #70
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You can also consider the JR East Pass (Flexible 3 day is a bargain for 10,000 yen) if you want to go further afield in Tohoku or up into the Alps (Nagano), or to Matsumoto for the Castle for example. The Flexi 3 day pass is only valid until the end of June though. You can buy the JR East Pass while you are in Japan.
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2361_02.html

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Old 26th June 2012, 1:30 PM   #71
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Definitely recommend Kyoto.

I just got back 2 weeks ago.
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Old 26th June 2012, 1:32 PM   #72
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Definitely recommend Kyoto.

I just got back 2 weeks ago.
Can you post your full itinerary? Might give people some good ideas. What were the highlights? Anything you would change?
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Old 26th June 2012, 3:52 PM   #73
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adamadam View Post
I'm in Tokyo.
Apart from shops, so far I've seen
Kawasaki (Muza Kawasaki Symphony Hall)
Roppongi (Big spider)
Ginza
Shinjuku
Harajuku (on a Sunday to Yoyogi Park, Takeshita dori, Meiji Shrine) then walked to Shibuya (just a couple of times outside the station, saw a Hachiko and a scramble)
Yokohama
Around Imperial Palace and East Gardens
I don't have a rail pass.

I have got 14 days left
I'll check out Akihabara and Odaiba today.
I really enjoy going on-foot.
Hike up Fuji in July.
You are lucky with the weather Did you walk under rainbow bridge?

Some ideas:
  • I don't know it's your thing: But Tokyo Disney Land and Disney Sea are hugely popular here, also for tourists. It's a day trip to Kasai on the outskirts, easy to access with public transportation.
  • I also see that you have not visited one of the high spots: Tokyo Tower, Ikebukuro Sunshin, Tokyo City Hall, or maybe best of all: Skytree. The current weather conditions are perfect for this.
  • Then there is Nikko it's a 1 or 2-day trip. Highly recommended.

If you visit Fuji, stay at the Hakone area and enjoy Japanese "onsen". It's a lovely area with many Japanese style "ryokan" (you sleep on tatami mats), and yet crowded at this time.

Last edited by chainbolt; 26th June 2012 at 4:02 PM.
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Old 26th June 2012, 8:51 PM   #74
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Thank you a777 and chainbolt! I will check out those recommendations!

I spent a few weeks in Osaka (and a few day trips to Kyoto) just over a year ago, so this trip is to look around Tokyo.

Thank you
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Old 27th June 2012, 12:35 PM   #75
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More Jetstar Sales.

Jetstar Sale now on

Gold Coast to Osaka/Tokyo return for $480 (3 Sep 2013 - 17 Dec 2013)
Sydney to Osaka return for $600 (17 Oct 2013 - 5 Dec 2013)
Melbourne to Osaka/Tokyo return for $620 (17 Oct 2013 - 12 Dec 2013)
Cairns to Osaka/Tokyo return for $400 (3 Sep 2013 - 17 Dec 2013)

Checked luggage is roughly $70 extra return.

Obviously, you can connect to those cities if you are elsewhere. You can also connect from Melb/Syd to get a better date range or sometimes cheaper price too.

This is perfect if you want to see the Autumn colours (Koyo) in Japan.
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2014.html
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2014_when.html
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2014_where.html
http://www.japan-guide.com/blog/koyo11/
http://www.japan-guide.com/blog/koyo10/

Also, Sumo Tournament is on in Fukuoka on Nov 11-25.

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