questions & answers: using the japan rail pass

5 days in japan

5 Days in Japan

Hi Daniel San
I am planning a visit with my family in the first week of japan and my touring schedule is as follows:

4 May 2014: Arrive at Haneda International Airport at 1600 hrs.

                   Check in Hotel and rest for the day.(Centurion Hotel Ueno,Ueno)   

5 May 2014: Full Conducted tour of Tokyo with family(Tokyo Through walking, Imperial Palace, Nijubashi Bridge and Marunochi building Tokyo Metropotitan Government Building Observations
6 May 2014: Full day to Disney land tour with family.
7 May 2014: Osaka full day tour and back to Tokyo.
8 May 2014: Full day tour to Hiroshima and Nagasaki tour and back to Tokyo.
9 May 2014: In Tokyo for shopping and flight to Hong Kong at 1800hrs.

I am planning to go by bullet train from Tokyo to Hiroshima and back same day.
Any suggestion appreciated even for the sightseeing and hotel stay.

Regards,
Nitin

nitin2875
nitin2875

Hello Nitin,

The JR Pass would give you amazing savings for your plans. What I am worried about is your travel time to Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Travel from Tokyo to Hiroshima takes almost 5 hours even with the Shinkansen and making a return to Tokyo would add up to 10 hours of train travel in one day. Going to Nagasaki from Hiroshima would add an other 215 Minutes / each way. So a better option would be to stay in Osaka on the 7th, travel to Hiroshima from there and perhaps leave Nagasaki for an other time.

For sightseeing, I would recommend a visit to Miyajima (the island shrine) when you are in Hiroshima.

Hope this helps!
Daniel

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Daniel-san
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Hi Daniel,
Thanks for your comments on the schedule.
I would appreciate if you could recommend something more if possible to see in Japan or a must see things in Japan.
In one of you review you have mentioned about Kyoto better then Osaka. Can you enlighten me on this.

Also can I get an English speaking guide and also how about my mother using wheel chair to visit Japan.
I really appreciate your time and efforts in explaining to people on this forum.

Regards,
Nitin.

nitin2875
nitin2875

Hi Nitin,

Certainly! As mentioned before I would include a visit to Miyajima, while you are in Hiroshima a visit to to the peace museum and peace memorial park are not to be missed either.

In Kyoto I'd make a stop at Kyomizu dera, which is a very beautiful temple which also offers a beautiful panoramic view over Kyoto. Also be sure to visit Nishiki Market and surrounding area. Lastly you could also consider a visit to the Golden Pavilion which is one of the most famous places in Kyoto.

Kyoto or Osaka, this is of course personal preference but in general I'd recommend staying in Kyoto if you come to Japan for sightseeing. This because the city is more quiet, relaxed and cleaner than Osaka. In addition many people visit Tokyo as well and staying in Kyoto offers a great variety as Osaka is much like Tokyo in many ways. Furthermore Kyoto is a city of Japanese culture, tradition and history while Osaka is a business metropolis. That's not that say though that Osaka is not worth visiting, the city is actually amazing in many ways. For instance visiting Shinsai bashi, Namba and Shinsekai will offer you an atmosphere not found anywhere else in Japan.

As for an English speaking guide, do you mean someone to show you around everywhere? There are many free voluntary guide services available. Here is a complete list for Japan.

Lastly traveling with a Wheelchair in Japan is certainly possible, many stations come equipped with elevators and other special services. However I would try to avoid local stations in more rural areas as there may not always be elevators available and the only way to reach the platform is via stairs.

Let me know if I can help with anything!
Daniel

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Daniel-san
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Hi Daniel,

Thanks for the web link for guides.
Then how about me starting the tour from south Japan Hiroshima and Nagasaki and travelling North to Tokyo.
I will keep this option open to book my tickets and hotels towards the end of my planning. There is no point in coming to Japan if you dont see Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
Awaiting for your response.

Regards,
Nitin

nitin2875
nitin2875

Hi Daniel,
Thanks for your feed back. Regarding travelling with wheel chair,my mother is not able to walk for long distance but for short distance not a problems.

I have modified my schedule based on your advice.
kindly have a look through it and suggest changes if any.

Tentative dates
25 May Arrive at Fukuoka at 1555 hrs. Stay night at Nagasaki/Hiroshima /Fukuoka(option open)
26 May See Nagasaki and Hiroshima. Stay night at Hiroshima/nagasaki
27 May Arrive At Kyoto by Bullet train at 0900hrs and see Kyoto. Stay at Kyoto/Osaka (option open)
28 May Arrive at Nara and Osaka at 0900 hrs and see the place. Stay Night
29 May Arrive at Toyko at 0900hrs and go around the place. Stay at night.
30 May DisneyLand visit a must for my daughter
31 May Till evening (1400hrs) at Tokyo and Flight to Hong Kong.

Kindly suggest a Natural Hot Spring close to Tokyo for my mother as she is having back Pain. I think taking a dip in the natural Hot Spring may cure to some extent.

Regards,
Nitin

nitin2875
nitin2875

Hi Nitin,

That looks like a much better plan if you wish to visit both Hiroshima and Nagasaki. I'd recommend staying the Fukuoka upon arrival. You can make a day trip to Nagasaki the next day and even travel on to Hiroshima after and stay the night there. After that the itinerary looks good.

Here is a great post with good Onsen around Tokyo. They will certainly allow you to relax.

Hope this helps!
Daniel

72a8815842aa5db137c135807bd6bb11?s=50&d=mm
Daniel-san
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Hi Daniel San,
Thanks for your response and sorry for late reply as was out of town.
Can I visit Nagasaki and Hiroshima in a day if I start early around 0700hrs in the morning.
Can you recommend the best JR pass to purchase so that I can travel on bullet trains and metro trains around in Japan.

At present my mother has dropped her plan to accompany us during the visit to Japan.
So myself ,wife and daughter (10 years). So I think we can cover more in the shortest possible time.

Regards,
Nitin

nitin2875
nitin2875

Good evening (from Europe).

I would suggest a 7 day JR Pass it is valid for the Shinkansen as well for local travel in on the JR line in many places such as Tokyo.

For travel from Nagasaki and Hiroshima, it would be possible but do keep in mind that you will be traveling a lot of that day. So the sooner you get on the train the better. I would consider taking the train at 6 a.m. so you can make the best of your day.

You can order a child pass for your daughter, the pass is only half the price as a normal pass.

Hope this helps!
Daniel

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Daniel-san
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Hi Daniel -San,
I have revised my schedule with more days of stay in Japan as follows;
Appreciate your comments and changes on a quick glance of the schedule.

20-May Flight from Bombay at 22:00 Hrs
21-May 1600 hrs Arrive at Fukuoka. Rest for the day
22-May Leave for Nagasaki.See Nagasaki and travel to Fukuoka. See Fukuoka.Back to Hotel at Fukuoka
23-May Leave for Hiroshima.See Hiroshima and Travel to Osaka.Hotel in Osaka
24-May Travel and proceed and See Nara Arrive at Osaka. Back at Osaka Hotel
25-May Travel to Kyoto Reach Kyoto See Kyoto and back to Osaka See Osaka Back at Hotel
26-May Travel to Mt Fuji 5 Station from Osaka.
27-May Travel to Tokyo Reach Tokyo. See Tokyo Visit Daiso Shop Back at Hotel
28-May Travel to Disney Land and spend day full
29-May Travel around Toyko and See Tokyo. Visit Daiso Shop Back at Hotel
30-May Travel to Hong Kong from Tokyo(Narita) at 1600hrs and reach HK at 20:00hrs

Regards,
Nitin

nitin2875
nitin2875

Hi Nitin,

That looks much better. At least now you can take your time to explore Nagasaki and Hiroshima.

After it all looks good too!

Happy travels,
Daniel

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Daniel-san
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Hi Daniel,
How about gifts for Japanese host.
I was thinking of getting some packed Indian Turmeric Powder as gifts for Japanese Host.
I was told most Japanese house will have Buddha idols in their House.

Regards,
Nitin.

nitin2875
nitin2875

Hi Nitin,

I think that anything from your home country would be appreciated a lot. Think of sweets, candy or something small and cute. An other possibility might be seeds from flowers native to where you live (be sure to check that your host family has a garden). You could also consider Indian Curry, I know its famous in Japan.

There are lots of possibilities!
Daniel

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Daniel-san
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Hi Daniel San,

Slight change in my plans and schedule for the Japan Tour.

21-May 1600 hrs Arrive at Fukuoka. Rest for the day
22-May Leave for Nagasaki.See Nagasaki and travel back to Fukuoka. See Fukuoka.Stay in Hotel at Fukuoka
23-May Leave for Hiroshima.See Hiroshima and Travel to Kyoto.Hotel in Kyoto
24-May Travel to Nara and See Nara. Arrive back Kyoto Hotel
25-May Travel to Osaka Reach Osaka See Osaka and back at Kyoto Hotel
26-May Travel to Tokyo via Mt Fuji 5 Station from Kyoto or go to Toyko and come back next day to see Mt Fuji.
27-May Travel in Tokyo . See Tokyo Visit Daiso Shop Back at Hotel
28-May Travel to Disney Land and spend day full
29-May Travel around Toyko and See Tokyo. Visit Daiso Shop Back at Hotel
30-May Travel to Hong Kong from Tokyo(Narita) at 1655hrs and reach HK at 20:00hr

Is it wise to purchase 7 days pass or 14 days.
Since from 22 May till 28 May I can use 7 Days pass and on 29 and 30 May in Tokyo for local travel use daily tickets or daily pass if available. Your advice is appreciated.

Regards,
Nitin.

nitin2875
nitin2875

Hi Nitin,

Welcome back! Did you find a small souvenir to bring to Japan?

Looking at your updated itinerary, I think the 7 day JR Pass would be your best choice, you could then use it from May 22nd - May 28th and cover all of your otherwise expansive travel.

Hope this helps!
Daniel

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Daniel-san
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Daniel San,

Thanks for the reply.
Not yet found/thought of any souvenir in mind.
Do you have anything in mind, most welcome for suggestion.
I hope to meet you in Japan if possible as you are doing a great job helping tourist in their schedule and in JR Pass queries .
Do you need anything from India for your self or family. Feel free to say so that I will try to get it for you.

Regards,
Nitin.

nitin2875
nitin2875

Hi Daniel San,

Does the railway station have Cloak room to deposit your luggage in the morning and take in the evening.
Example I will reach Hiroshima in the morning and leave my luggage at the station,see Hiroshima and collect my luggage in the evening and travel by Hiroshima -Kyoto train in the evening.
Is this possible.

Regards,
Nitin

nitin2875
nitin2875

Hi Nitin,

Sorry for the late follow up :) It's been rather busy here.

Each station does have coin lockers available, ranging from normal size to ones that can house a big suitcase. You could store your luggage here while exploring Japan.

Thank you for your kind earlier replay, as it happens, I am currently in Europe so it may be hard meeting up. However I love all kinds of curry and I''d be happy to take your recommendations on Indian Curry, or what I should look for when buying it.

Ward regards,
Daniel

72a8815842aa5db137c135807bd6bb11?s=50&d=mm
Daniel-san
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