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Japan Travel |OT| We have to go back

sNtd

Member
Oct 24, 2018
263
I cant find nothing of interest to do in Tottori and Ibaraki...

Even Saga and Kochi had more interest things to do and those are the most inaka places Ive been.
Some suggestions for the south part of Ibaraki; visit JAXA in Tsukuba, rent a bicycle at Tsuchiura Station to cycle around the second biggest lake of Japan (Lake Kasumigaura) or follow the RinRin Road around Mount Tsukuba. Climbing Mount Tsukuba is also very nice, you have a beautiful view of the kanto plains from the top.
 

AllenShrz

Member
Nov 6, 2017
189
Ohh thanks.

Some suggestions for the south part of Ibaraki; visit JAXA in Tsukuba, rent a bicycle at Tsuchiura Station to cycle around the second biggest lake of Japan (Lake Kasumigaura) or follow the RinRin Road around Mount Tsukuba. Climbing Mount Tsukuba is also very nice, you have a beautiful view of the kanto plains from the top.
Much appreciated.
 
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MikeHattsu

MikeHattsu

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,493
In the planning stages of a trip in April with my siblings right now. We have our tickets (will be in Japan from roughly April 5th - 14th, plus or minus some partial days). Current plan is to spend a few days in Tokyo, one day in Nikko, a few days in Kyoto, and a day each at Nara and Hakone.

Also, wanted to confirm if it makes any sense to try to get rail passes.
If you only got 10 days, then it would probably be best to skip Nikko.

If you go Tokyo->Odawara/Hakone->Kyoto->Tokyo and one way from NRT->Tokyo within 7 days, then you should get a JR Pass. If not, then most likely no.
 

Excellence

Member
May 15, 2019
4
So my Visa has been issued today and this will be my first trip to Japan.

To be honest I am quite excited and anxious at the same time. Part of that, that it will be a long trip (From December 19 to January 3) and my first solo trip.
I have not decided on my itinerary yet and there is too much that I want to see , so I will stick with the three major cities (Tokyo , Kyoto , Osaka) .

However:

-I want to spend a day at either Hakone or Lake Kawaguchi to see mount Fuji , which one do you recommend ? both of them look beautiful and do you think it is worth to visit them both ?

- Also I am not decided where I should be spending the NYE ! Tokyo seems like a safe bet but any other cities have better festivals?

- Since I am arriving / departing from Narita airport , how many days should I spend in Tokyo after arriving and before departing to the other cities , taking into accounts that some places will be closed at NYE?

Thanks in advance for your replies :)
 

gachapin

Member
Oct 25, 2017
465
Tokyo
If the weather is good, you can enjoy the view of Mt. Fuji in Tokyo.


I like the idea of spending NYE in Kyoto. You get more opportunities to see traditional ceremonies for celebrating the new year.
 
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ThatCrazyGuy

Member
Nov 27, 2017
1,186
Can I bring Japanese apples into America?

I bought some grapes the other day. Didn’t know where they came from. Put google translate to the back label. They are from America, haha.

It’s funny seeing the special label for American beef on the packages in the grocery store. They want that imported angus.

I saw a few pork items saying they came from Spain too. I don’t see pork from Spain at my HEB, dammit!
 

Laevateinn

Member
Oct 25, 2017
953
Chicago
Can I bring Japanese apples into America?

I bought some grapes the other day. Didn’t know where they came from. Put google translate to the back label. They are from America, haha.

It’s funny seeing the special label for American beef on the packages in the grocery store. They want that imported angus.

I saw a few pork items saying they came from Spain too. I don’t see pork from Spain at my HEB, dammit!
I’m pretty sure that bringing any kind of produce back to the US is a bad idea.
 
Oct 27, 2017
232
Nashville
I went to a place featured on The Lonely Gourmet and the wait was decently long. Probably the same for that show.
If you don't have a particular time etched out. I got to go to a popular milk tea spot later in the evening an hour before close.
It varies depending on location and time of day. Some of the locations are out of the way enough that you could walk in. Others, yeah, there's gonna be a line. I went to a few when I was around the areas, and based on my experience:

Kakigori. Kooriya Peace is right next to Inokashira Park, so it will have lines. But like on the show, you can reserve a spot, or if you don't plan to be around Kichijoji for long, there's a short wait to do take out. There's also Amaikko, where Kantaro tried to go but had a long line in the show, was actually less crowded.

Parfait. Kajitsuen Liber is fairly close to Shinjuku station. Chances are no matter when you go, there will be a quite a line. And the specific dessert from the show is seasonal.

Savarin. Recherche is in Yokohama and not near anything super busy. Small place but no wasn't crowded. Chances are the owner will ask if you went there because of Kantaro.

Eclair. Rue de Passy is a small patisserie, a little out of the way so doubt you'll run into crowds or lines or anything. Although, I didn't actually try an eclair there.

Chocolate. Minimal is close to yoyogi park, didn't seem crowded. I saw another location in Ginza. I think on the show they just had chocolate bars? You can just pick up a box or something. They did have other chocolate focused desserts if you wanted to eat in. When I went they had a chocolate parfait on the menu that was sold out, and this must've been around 4 or 5pm.

Mont Blanc. Waguriya is on yanaka ginza, which seems like a decently popular shopping street/shotengai. This will have a long line. Other than the parfait, this is the only one I waited in a line for. I have little patience for lines, but it was kinda worth it. Probably the best thing out of the ones I did try; I'm between it and the savarin.
A belated thank you to all of you for the input! I ended up sending the full list of Kantaro stops to my family in Japan and they picked a couple of places to go based on what was close to where we were sightseeing: Kajitsuen (fruit parfait) and Umemura (mamekan, but we ordered the anmitsu). No line at either place, so I guess we lucked out! The staff (owner?) at Umemura was very appreciative of our visit after learning we heard of it from Kantaro. I highly recommend it, the anmitsu was delicious!! :)
 

Stuart444

Member
Oct 25, 2017
7,317
So me and my wife are going back to Tokyo for our slightly delayed honeymoon.

14th (technically 15th since we leave Scotland on the 14th aka my birthday haha) until the 21st.

Can't wait, already booked plane tickets and same hotel as last time (Mystays in Akasaka).

:D
 

Jacobbles

Member
Jan 10, 2018
659
I'm currently spending a week in Tokyo, it's my first time in Japan and I'm having a blast!

Not sure if this is the best place to ask, but can anyone recommend some good stores around Tokyo that stock videogame toys/figures? Not interested in anime stuff, but very interested in tracking down some Dragon Quest stuff that I haven't been able to find at the S-E cafes.

Any suggestions would be helpful!
 
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MikeHattsu

MikeHattsu

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,493
Not sure if this is the best place to ask, but can anyone recommend some good stores around Tokyo that stock videogame toys/figures? Not interested in anime stuff, but very interested in tracking down some Dragon Quest stuff that I haven't been able to find at the S-E cafes.
Try Super Potato and the Dragon Quest Lawson convenience store in Akihabara :P
 

Valkerion

Member
Oct 29, 2017
3,145
I'm currently spending a week in Tokyo, it's my first time in Japan and I'm having a blast!

Not sure if this is the best place to ask, but can anyone recommend some good stores around Tokyo that stock videogame toys/figures? Not interested in anime stuff, but very interested in tracking down some Dragon Quest stuff that I haven't been able to find at the S-E cafes.

Any suggestions would be helpful!
Yeah, all of Akihabara... well the parts people think when they see Akihabara lol
 

Jacobbles

Member
Jan 10, 2018
659
Try Super Potato and the Dragon Quest Lawson convenience store in Akihabara :P
I've been to both! D: I've been looking out for DQ stuff in Akihabara but mostly only find plush slime stuff. I'm specifically after the DQ AM figures and the Bring Arts figures, but the (admittedly very few) figure shops I've been into only have anime statues mostly.
 
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MikeHattsu

MikeHattsu

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,493
I've been to both! D: I've been looking out for DQ stuff in Akihabara but mostly only find plush slime stuff. I'm specifically after the DQ AM figures and the Bring Arts figures, but the (admittedly very few) figure shops I've been into only have anime statues mostly.
Try to ask staff if they got stuff. Check in Mandarake, and also Jungle and AmiAmi, and the Astop rental showcase place in the Radio Kaikan building. You could also check the rental showcase Astop in the Akiba Cultures Zone building. If all that fails, then go to Nakano Broadway in Nakano and check there :P

DQ AM are prize figures? Could try one of the many prize figure resale shops as well.
 

Jacobbles

Member
Jan 10, 2018
659
Try to ask staff if they got stuff. Check in Mandarake, and also Jungle and AmiAmi, and the Astop rental showcase place in the Radio Kaikan building. You could also check the rental showcase Astop in the Akiba Cultures Zone building. If all that fails, then go to Nakano Broadway in Nakano and check there :P

DQ AM are prize figures? Could try one of the many prize figure resale shops as well.
Thanks for this! I'll be sure to check these out. Its my first time here and the amount of shops is overwhelming
 

AkumaNiko

Member
Oct 28, 2017
723
If the weather is good, you can enjoy the view of Mt. Fuji in Tokyo.


I like the idea of spending NYE in Kyoto. You get more opportunities to see traditional ceremonies for celebrating the new year.
Yep! This was a huge surprise for us when we woke up on a very clear and sunny morning from Tokyo Disney/Tokyo Bay.





That being said, we have decided to go back two years early and go after the olympics in 2020. Shooting for early October. We were going to Disney Cali but after prices for hotel, flight, car rental and actual DL ticket prices, it was about the same as 8 full nights in Tokyo. Prices to Japan right now are pretty decent compared to when we almost went in 2016/2017
 

Sir Hound

Member
Oct 28, 2017
642
If the weather is good, you can enjoy the view of Mt. Fuji in Tokyo.


I like the idea of spending NYE in Kyoto. You get more opportunities to see traditional ceremonies for celebrating the new year.
These photos are slightly misleading as they're using wild zoom lenses.

Me and my wife are planning a second trip to Japan in April. Last time we did Tokyo/Kyoto/Osaka/Hiroshima. This time we're flying into Tokyo again and we've got a 2 week clean slate. We're pretty keen on cycling the Shimanami Kaido route but apart from that we don't have anything planned. Any good resources for second-timers?
 
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Stuart444

Member
Oct 25, 2017
7,317
Quick Q: Any recommendations for a Karaoke place? Me and my wife want to try karaoke this time since we haven't during our previous trips.
 
Ghibli museum, while pretty small, was super nice with a lots of details and reference to past movies. The highlight was the Guardian on the roof. Protip, While online is a good way to get tickets, you can just go to the nearby lawson ticket shop to purchase them for any time. At least my brother was able to get the same day ticket when he order his tickets on the wrong date.
 

Excellence

Member
May 15, 2019
4
Ghibli museum, while pretty small, was super nice with a lots of details and reference to past movies. The highlight was the Guardian on the roof. Protip, While online is a good way to get tickets, you can just go to the nearby lawson ticket shop to purchase them for any time. At least my brother was able to get the same day ticket when he order his tickets on the wrong date.
Well , you gave me hope . I removed the museum visit from my schedule as I was not able to find tickets online for my December visit .
 

Shinogu

Member
Oct 25, 2017
109
Ghibli museum, while pretty small, was super nice with a lots of details and reference to past movies. The highlight was the Guardian on the roof. Protip, While online is a good way to get tickets, you can just go to the nearby lawson ticket shop to purchase them for any time. At least my brother was able to get the same day ticket when he order his tickets on the wrong date.
Well , you gave me hope . I removed the museum visit from my schedule as I was not able to find tickets online for my December visit .
I've been dreading going for tickets early next week for my January trip, so this does indeed give me a bit more hope as well.
 

Jacobbles

Member
Jan 10, 2018
659
Thanks to everyone for the store suggestions! My travels took me near Nakano Broadway today so I ended up spending a few hours there and holy shit, it's insane. Ended up finding the four DQ figures I was after (Dragonlord, Malroth, Zoma, Psaro) plus a whole bunch of other stuff that I had to leave behind because suitcase space is limited (I've already had to buy an extra bag on this trip because of all the stuff I've bought lmao)

I guess I'll just have to come back to Japan after I'm married and have saved some money for all the stuff I want to buy @[email protected]
 

Rahvar

Weight Loss Champion 2018: Most Lost
Member
Oct 25, 2017
679
Sweden
Thanks to everyone for the store suggestions! My travels took me near Nakano Broadway today so I ended up spending a few hours there and holy shit, it's insane. Ended up finding the four DQ figures I was after (Dragonlord, Malroth, Zoma, Psaro) plus a whole bunch of other stuff that I had to leave behind because suitcase space is limited (I've already had to buy an extra bag on this trip because of all the stuff I've bought lmao)

I guess I'll just have to come back to Japan after I'm married and have saved some money for all the stuff I want to buy @[email protected]
Welcome to the club. Me and my wife brought 4 suitcases and paid way to much money to ship a box home from our trip. We're planning one trip in 2021 and after 2022 the plan is to do 2 trips per year, 2 weeks each.
 

SayemAhmd

Member
Dec 3, 2019
8
Almost a heart attack this morning. Had a call from Aeroflot saying that our flights booked for early May had been cancelled. Luckily, I checked the booking reference on their website and it seems like we've been rebooked for the same departure time from the same Airport, but heading to Haneda instead of Narita. Got an email confirmation about the change not too long afterwards, too.

Seems a bit odd, but apparently it's easier getting into central Tokyo from Haneda than Narita. It'd be our first trip and we're in the middle of organising everything.

One conundrum we have is that we've got a hotel for a week in Tokyo at the end of our trip in Akasaka, but the room sizes seem a bit small (12m Squared), so we were looking at another slightly bigger one with the same facilities in Ginza, coming in at 17m Squared. The price difference is a good 30,000 Yen, however. Reckon it's worth it? Considering we're staying there for a solid week.
 
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MikeHattsu

MikeHattsu

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,493
One conundrum we have is that we've got a hotel for a week in Tokyo at the end of our trip in Akasaka, but the room sizes seem a bit small (12m Squared), so we were looking at another slightly bigger one with the same facilities in Ginza, coming in at 17m Squared. The price difference is a good 30,000 Yen, however. Reckon it's worth it? Considering we're staying there for a solid week.
How many are we and what kind of bed(s) are there in the room :P
 
Akihabara was a much bigger hit than I though when it came to finding figures. Like within the first anime store I found Misaka (Railgun) Figma that was only part of a game was there still sealed at a good price. The partly down side is half of the stores I went to were character goods of the same keychain and small items that weren't interest other than the plushies and more cooler design like a rubber strap that had multiple characters having a picnic. I'm impress with the second hand market with the prices, quality, and how much rare stuff can be found.
 

Stuart444

Member
Oct 25, 2017
7,317

Bowser

Member
Nov 7, 2017
2,082
Planning my first trip to Japan for next year and I see Swiss Air has some of the best deals from my country. Does anyone have any experience with them flying to Japan? They'll be flying from and to Osaka from March 2020 on so It would fit perfectly for the route I'm thinking about.
 

MrKlaw

Member
Oct 25, 2017
8,941
Jesus booking Shinkansen tickets is stressful. We’ve just jumped through 8,000 hoops to hopefully have booked just the Shinkansen part but we still need the regular part. And the website doesn’t even email you the receipt - you have to print it out so if you’re not near a printer you’re stuffed.

and it doesn’t even show the price until you’re all the way down the rabbit hole of the application
 

Rahvar

Weight Loss Champion 2018: Most Lost
Member
Oct 25, 2017
679
Sweden
Jesus booking Shinkansen tickets is stressful. We’ve just jumped through 8,000 hoops to hopefully have booked just the Shinkansen part but we still need the regular part. And the website doesn’t even email you the receipt - you have to print it out so if you’re not near a printer you’re stuffed.

and it doesn’t even show the price until you’re all the way down the rabbit hole of the application

We just bought ours at the stations, helpful staff and it was very smooth
 

MrKlaw

Member
Oct 25, 2017
8,941
Which website you using?
official JR west one we think - Eki something. Wife is Japanese so was using the standard page. I tried the English version and it was similarly obtuse - no price until almost finishing the process and after putting in credit card details, and generally painful. Done now - had to buy the regular train separately (we found out later we could have booked at the same time but was too stressed trying to make sure we didn’t mess up the Shinkansen part we did it separately )

Aside from that my kids are at the age where they want to go do their own thing rather than be dragged around by us. Daughter is curious about Nakano broadway but for figures etc would akihabara be good too (I think we’d still do a day trip to makati maybe just me and her - wife and son won’t give a shit)
 
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MrKlaw

Member
Oct 25, 2017
8,941
Any particular picks for pocket Wi-Fi? We used japan-wireless last time (Easter 2018) and it was pretty good - we had two between the four of us

Open to other suggestions or even data sim options (we all have iPhones) but they’d need to support tethering for our iPads