questions & answers: using the japan rail pass

jr pass + places worth to visit

JR Pass + places worth to visit

Hi there,
I have things going on in my mind right now,and would love to hear any advice here :)

So we will be traveling to Japan on April 1-16. We have booked a hotel in Kyoto for 3 days only (I know, we should have planned to stay longer), and we will transfer to Tokyo on April 4, stay in Tokyo for the next 12 days. Plan to visit Yokohama for delicious Ramen :D I know it sounds that we will spend a lot of our time in Tokyo (my husband wants us to just enjoy Tokyo areas as much as we can, he's mesmerized by Shibuya, Harajuku, all those famous areas...the idea is to relax, hang out, etc ... not in rush if you know what I mean) but after I made the list of all places that we're going to visit, it turns out that we still have 2 or 3 days left and we are like "I don't know where to go anymore?" :/ :D

(we booked the hotels 1 month ago, and there were not much hotel options left, except the fancy ones. So we had no choice but to book whatever we could get, or we have no place to stay. that is why we didn't think to visit other prefectures, all we had in our mind was, get the ROOMS first) okay, I know that is long story. sorry I didn't mean to confuse anybody.

Now, I'm thinking that we should at least visit one more prefecture:

  1. Gifu (Takayama only, we'll save Shirakawago for our next trip next year) is it possible to do a day trip there? or is it gonna be too much? can we still catch the train to go back to Tokyo? I did check Hyperdia, and it seems it's possible???

About JR PASS and IC Cards:

  1. Since we are "stuck" in Tokyo, we will just get ourselves 7 Days JR pass (use from day 1-7: Haneda-Kyoto-Tokyo-Yokohama- (Gifu or Nara or Nikko??) ) is it gonna be a good deal?

  2. Which IC card is best for us if we have 7 days JR Pass? Pasmo/Suica? we would like to use the Subway/Metro to get to here and there around Tokyo.

Thank you :)

littleOcean
littleOcean

Hi there,

Being stuck in Tokyo really is not a bad thing :) There's more than enough to keep you busy for months! Still making a day trip or two can be very nice too. Shirakawa-go, unfortunately is a little to far for a day trip, one way travel is over 6hours alone (260+ minutes by rail and 60+ minutes by bus). There are many alternatives however! Personally I think Nikko makes for a great day trip from Tokyo. Other possible day trips from Tokyo include a visit to Fuji, Kamakura or Nagano.

As for the 7 day JR Pass, it will help you make very nice savings over normal tickets. The 7 day JR Pass is about the same price as a normal return ticket Tokyo - Kyoto using the Shinkansen, any additional travel basically is free.

Lastly, IC cards these days are all the same in Japan. Just buy the one you like, they are all interchangeable now.

Hope this helps,
Daniel

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Daniel-san
Expert_button_2

Hi, thanks for the replies. some more questions:

-Would you be able to tell me the operation hours of Shinkansen Train? we certainly don't wanna miss it when it's time to go back to our hotel :D

I'm not sure if it's ok to ask this here, but I will ask anyway :)
-How to get to Tokyo Station from Kinkakuji Temple? Do we have to go back to Arashiyama station? I can't find some specific answer online :/

Thanks again! have a nice day.

littleOcean
littleOcean

also, when is the best time to buy JR pass if we leave march 30 (arrive in April 1 Japan time)
sorry for many questions

littleOcean
littleOcean

Hi again!

Sorry for the late replay!

1.) The Shinkansen operate between 6 a.m. until midnight.

2.) The best way is to travel there by bus. Have a look at this map http://youinjapan.net/maps/kyoto/kyoto_bus_map_jap.jpg for all the details.

I'd advise purchasing the JR Pass at least 14 days in advance. This way you can put your mind on other things before departure.

Hope this helps :)
Daniel

72a8815842aa5db137c135807bd6bb11?s=50&d=mm
Daniel-san
Expert_button_2

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