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Japan (Tokyo/Kyoto)



 
 
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  #1  
Old January 16th, 2005, 03:02 AM
koneko
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Posts: n/a
Default Japan (Tokyo/Kyoto)

I will be in Tokyo and Kyoto in early April. I only have a limited
time, and since this is part of a tour package, part of the itinerary
is planned. I chose a tour, since I've never been to Japan, but I want
to make sure that I use my free time well, so I can see the parts of
the two cities I really am interested in. I'd be very grateful for
some recommendations on the following:

Best way to change currency, find ATM machines? I am a "Credit card"
person, and I know cash is the way to go in Japan.

Tokyo: I have a half day tour which involves Tokyo Tower, Imperial
Palace Plaza, and the Asakusa Kannon Temple. We will end up in the
Nakamise Arcade, and are free for the afternoon. I am trying to figure
out the best way to use the afternoon. I really want to go to a great
shopping district... is this feasible with the time frame? Is it the
Shinjuku or Shibuya region? Will the stores close soon? What's the
best way from Nakamise Aracde to reach this area (also least
expensive).

Kyoto: Is the Kyoto Handicraft Centre really a "tourist trap?" It's
part of our itinerary, but I don't really want to go to a tourist
trap... but if the souvenirs are all right, and the prices are not
outrageous, I don't mind. Also I heard about the "maiko-makeovers" in
Kyoto. Are these tacky, or fun? I think it's kind of a cute idea, but
I don't want to waste money if it's going to be tacky. Is there one
studio that does a really nice job?

Thank you in advance!

  #2  
Old January 16th, 2005, 03:27 AM
Chris Kuan
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Posts: n/a
Default

"koneko" wrote on Sun 16 Jan 2005 01:02:19p

I will be in Tokyo and Kyoto in early April. I only have a limited
time, and since this is part of a tour package, part of the itinerary
is planned.


Best way to change currency, find ATM machines? I am a "Credit card"
person, and I know cash is the way to go in Japan.


I'd say change at the airport as soon as you land (or, at your bank before
you leave). It'll only take a few minutes and probably there'll be a bit of
milling around waiting for the entire tour group to coalesce. As you're on
a tour, I don't think the tiny foreign exchange fluctuations during your
trip will affect whether you really want to spend precious tour time and
energy looking for somewhere to change money. It's very safe to carry a
heap of cash on your person (I've carried JPY100000, and heard of people
carying more), where you're going.


Tokyo: I have a half day tour which involves Tokyo Tower, Imperial
Palace Plaza, and the Asakusa Kannon Temple. We will end up in the
Nakamise Arcade, and are free for the afternoon. I am trying to figure
out the best way to use the afternoon. I really want to go to a great
shopping district... is this feasible with the time frame? Is it the
Shinjuku or Shibuya region? Will the stores close soon? What's the
best way from Nakamise Aracde to reach this area (also least
expensive).


I assume the arcade is over near the temple, on the eastern side of the
city. The efficient train service means you could get to either Shibuya or
Shinjuku within about 30 minutes, probably quicker by subway. These suburbs
are actually on the western edge of the main city of Toyko. I'd say for
fashion shopping and general vibe, Shibuya would be much better. Shinjuku
is nice for electronics and maybe a visit to the Takashimaya Times Square
shopping complex (It also has a Kinokuniya bookstore with an English-
language section, so I was happy to find some bilingual manga at domestic
prices). Don't forget to visit Hachiko outside the Shibuya JR station, and
marvel at the tsunami of humanity washing across the intersection in front
of the Starbucks.


Kyoto: Is the Kyoto Handicraft Centre really a "tourist trap?"


I think you could say so. The souveneirs are actually quite nice, but are
also fairly pricey. But if your tour has lunch upstairs, there's no harm in
looking (and not much else to do in the immediate vicinity).


--
Chris
Concatenate for email: mrgazpacho @ hotmail . com
  #3  
Old January 16th, 2005, 03:27 AM
Chris Kuan
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

"koneko" wrote on Sun 16 Jan 2005 01:02:19p

I will be in Tokyo and Kyoto in early April. I only have a limited
time, and since this is part of a tour package, part of the itinerary
is planned.


Best way to change currency, find ATM machines? I am a "Credit card"
person, and I know cash is the way to go in Japan.


I'd say change at the airport as soon as you land (or, at your bank before
you leave). It'll only take a few minutes and probably there'll be a bit of
milling around waiting for the entire tour group to coalesce. As you're on
a tour, I don't think the tiny foreign exchange fluctuations during your
trip will affect whether you really want to spend precious tour time and
energy looking for somewhere to change money. It's very safe to carry a
heap of cash on your person (I've carried JPY100000, and heard of people
carying more), where you're going.


Tokyo: I have a half day tour which involves Tokyo Tower, Imperial
Palace Plaza, and the Asakusa Kannon Temple. We will end up in the
Nakamise Arcade, and are free for the afternoon. I am trying to figure
out the best way to use the afternoon. I really want to go to a great
shopping district... is this feasible with the time frame? Is it the
Shinjuku or Shibuya region? Will the stores close soon? What's the
best way from Nakamise Aracde to reach this area (also least
expensive).


I assume the arcade is over near the temple, on the eastern side of the
city. The efficient train service means you could get to either Shibuya or
Shinjuku within about 30 minutes, probably quicker by subway. These suburbs
are actually on the western edge of the main city of Toyko. I'd say for
fashion shopping and general vibe, Shibuya would be much better. Shinjuku
is nice for electronics and maybe a visit to the Takashimaya Times Square
shopping complex (It also has a Kinokuniya bookstore with an English-
language section, so I was happy to find some bilingual manga at domestic
prices). Don't forget to visit Hachiko outside the Shibuya JR station, and
marvel at the tsunami of humanity washing across the intersection in front
of the Starbucks.


Kyoto: Is the Kyoto Handicraft Centre really a "tourist trap?"


I think you could say so. The souveneirs are actually quite nice, but are
also fairly pricey. But if your tour has lunch upstairs, there's no harm in
looking (and not much else to do in the immediate vicinity).


--
Chris
Concatenate for email: mrgazpacho @ hotmail . com
  #4  
Old January 16th, 2005, 03:34 AM
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

"Best way to change currency, find ATM machines? I am a "Credit card"
person, and I know cash is the way to go in Japan."

The best way to change currency is ATMs. Exchanges and banks charge
high commissions. ATMs are all over the place. If you're having
trouble finding an ATM that takes your cards, look for a Citibank ATM.
Credit cards are rarely accepted anywhere in Japan, but it's very safe
so there's no problem carrying a lot of cash.

"Tokyo: I have a half day tour which involves Tokyo Tower, Imperial
Palace Plaza, and the Asakusa Kannon Temple."

The Tokyo Tower is a tourist trap and complete waste of time.

"We will end up in the Nakamise Arcade, and are free for the afternoon.
I am trying to figure out the best way to use the afternoon. I really
want to go to a great shopping district... is this feasible with the
time frame? Is it the Shinjuku or Shibuya region? Will the stores close
soon? What's the best way from Nakamise Aracde to reach this area (also
least expensive)."

Go to Shinjuku. Take the subway to get there - taxis are very
expensive and best avoided except late at night when the subway doesn't
run. If you want to see a Japanese department store, go to Ginza, and
don't miss the food floor.

  #5  
Old January 16th, 2005, 04:16 AM
Dave Fossett
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Posts: n/a
Default

"koneko" wrote:


Best way to change currency, find ATM machines? I am a "Credit card"
person, and I know cash is the way to go in Japan.


Look for post offices. Most post offices have ATMs that can be used with
international cash cards.



--
Dave Fossett
Saitama, Japan

  #6  
Old January 16th, 2005, 04:16 AM
Dave Fossett
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

"koneko" wrote:


Best way to change currency, find ATM machines? I am a "Credit card"
person, and I know cash is the way to go in Japan.


Look for post offices. Most post offices have ATMs that can be used with
international cash cards.



--
Dave Fossett
Saitama, Japan

  #7  
Old January 16th, 2005, 09:42 PM
Giny
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Posts: n/a
Default

Dear Koneko,

For the amount you mention you can easily have 2 rooms at
below-mentioned hotel.
It is 3 stars, centrally located, good, has good and cheap breakfast and the
hotel is recently renovated.

I book it a lot for our passengers and they all like it.
It is a small-sized comfortable hotel in Akasaka.
The details a

Asia Center of Japan
8-10-32, Akasaka, Minatoku, Tokyo,107-0052, Japan
81-3-3402-6111(TEL) 81-3-3402-0738(FAX)
http://www.asiacenter.or.jp (URL)
(e-mail)


kind regards,
Giny
Tozai Travel
Amsterdam
www.tozai.nl





"koneko" schreef in bericht
oups.com...
I will be in Tokyo and Kyoto in early April. I only have a limited
time, and since this is part of a tour package, part of the itinerary
is planned. I chose a tour, since I've never been to Japan, but I want
to make sure that I use my free time well, so I can see the parts of
the two cities I really am interested in. I'd be very grateful for
some recommendations on the following:

Best way to change currency, find ATM machines? I am a "Credit card"
person, and I know cash is the way to go in Japan.

Tokyo: I have a half day tour which involves Tokyo Tower, Imperial
Palace Plaza, and the Asakusa Kannon Temple. We will end up in the
Nakamise Arcade, and are free for the afternoon. I am trying to figure
out the best way to use the afternoon. I really want to go to a great
shopping district... is this feasible with the time frame? Is it the
Shinjuku or Shibuya region? Will the stores close soon? What's the
best way from Nakamise Aracde to reach this area (also least
expensive).

Kyoto: Is the Kyoto Handicraft Centre really a "tourist trap?" It's
part of our itinerary, but I don't really want to go to a tourist
trap... but if the souvenirs are all right, and the prices are not
outrageous, I don't mind. Also I heard about the "maiko-makeovers" in
Kyoto. Are these tacky, or fun? I think it's kind of a cute idea, but
I don't want to waste money if it's going to be tacky. Is there one
studio that does a really nice job?

Thank you in advance!



  #8  
Old January 16th, 2005, 09:42 PM
Giny
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Dear Koneko,

For the amount you mention you can easily have 2 rooms at
below-mentioned hotel.
It is 3 stars, centrally located, good, has good and cheap breakfast and the
hotel is recently renovated.

I book it a lot for our passengers and they all like it.
It is a small-sized comfortable hotel in Akasaka.
The details a

Asia Center of Japan
8-10-32, Akasaka, Minatoku, Tokyo,107-0052, Japan
81-3-3402-6111(TEL) 81-3-3402-0738(FAX)
http://www.asiacenter.or.jp (URL)
(e-mail)


kind regards,
Giny
Tozai Travel
Amsterdam
www.tozai.nl





"koneko" schreef in bericht
oups.com...
I will be in Tokyo and Kyoto in early April. I only have a limited
time, and since this is part of a tour package, part of the itinerary
is planned. I chose a tour, since I've never been to Japan, but I want
to make sure that I use my free time well, so I can see the parts of
the two cities I really am interested in. I'd be very grateful for
some recommendations on the following:

Best way to change currency, find ATM machines? I am a "Credit card"
person, and I know cash is the way to go in Japan.

Tokyo: I have a half day tour which involves Tokyo Tower, Imperial
Palace Plaza, and the Asakusa Kannon Temple. We will end up in the
Nakamise Arcade, and are free for the afternoon. I am trying to figure
out the best way to use the afternoon. I really want to go to a great
shopping district... is this feasible with the time frame? Is it the
Shinjuku or Shibuya region? Will the stores close soon? What's the
best way from Nakamise Aracde to reach this area (also least
expensive).

Kyoto: Is the Kyoto Handicraft Centre really a "tourist trap?" It's
part of our itinerary, but I don't really want to go to a tourist
trap... but if the souvenirs are all right, and the prices are not
outrageous, I don't mind. Also I heard about the "maiko-makeovers" in
Kyoto. Are these tacky, or fun? I think it's kind of a cute idea, but
I don't want to waste money if it's going to be tacky. Is there one
studio that does a really nice job?

Thank you in advance!



  #9  
Old January 17th, 2005, 12:35 AM
Jim Ley
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

On Sun, 16 Jan 2005 16:24:54 -0700, "Bob Myers"
wrote:


"koneko" wrote in message
roups.com...

Best way to change currency, find ATM machines? I am a "Credit card"
person, and I know cash is the way to go in Japan.


You should change a reasonable amount at the airport, but
then exchange should also be readily available at your hotel's
front desk. Do you know where you are staying yet?


Why not use the cash machines at the airport and then at the post
office or similar? using the exchange at the hotels front desk seems
to be a very good way to get an extremely lousy rate.

Jim.
  #10  
Old January 17th, 2005, 04:13 AM
koneko
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Just a general note to everyone:

I wanted to thank everyone who has responded to my inquiry, I
appreciate all your suggestions, and have been writing down your
suggestions, and looking into the links you have sent me!

 




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