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Old 2009-02-10, 20:23   Link #421
Guardian Enzo
Seishu's Ace
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Kagurazaka, Tokyo
Wow - lots of strong opinions there. PASMO can only be purchased locally I assume, unlike the JR pass which can only be purchased abroad? I hadn't even seriously considered Kobe to this point, but now you brought it up it does sound like an intriguing option. I'm more conflicted than ever.

This trip is an appetizer - I just have to look at it that way and try not to drove myself crazy...
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Old 2009-02-11, 03:52   Link #422
ZephyrLeanne
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Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Wellington, NZ
Age: 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Guardian Enzo View Post
Wow - lots of strong opinions there. PASMO can only be purchased locally I assume, unlike the JR pass which can only be purchased abroad? I hadn't even seriously considered Kobe to this point, but now you brought it up it does sound like an intriguing option. I'm more conflicted than ever.

This trip is an appetizer - I just have to look at it that way and try not to drove myself crazy...
Well, if that's the case, I think it would be info overload. Try this guide. ONLY CATCH: JR PASS is essential, if you haven't figured out already, since this is from JR after all.

http://www.japanrail.com/JR_fromTOKYO-KYOTO.htm

Still, very useful. Also, I believe that most hotels run by the JR Group have special rates for JR PASS holders, so you should try to refer to it.

Also, yes, PASMO can be bought in Japan, but will not be of much use if following this guide.
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Old 2009-02-12, 09:16   Link #423
RandomGuy
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Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Osaka
Age: 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Guardian Enzo View Post
Wow - lots of strong opinions there. PASMO can only be purchased locally I assume, unlike the JR pass which can only be purchased abroad? I hadn't even seriously considered Kobe to this point, but now you brought it up it does sound like an intriguing option. I'm more conflicted than ever.

This trip is an appetizer - I just have to look at it that way and try not to drove myself crazy...
Don't bother with PASMO—it's just an electronic fare card. You still have to pay the fare for all your trips. If you're there on a tourist visa and want to get out of Tokyo at some point, the Japan Rail Pass is definitely worth your while (though you'll still need to pay the fare on any subway or private line you ride).

As for excursions from Tokyo that can be managed as day trips, I'd recommend Nikko and Kamakura, plus Hakone-Yumoto or Atami if you like hot springs.

If you stay in Kyoto, Nara can be done as a day-trip. Take the Kintetsu line to Nara Station (or JR Nara Line, but be prepared to walk a ways), and stroll along Nara Kouen. It might not be of much interest to a hardcore anime nerd, but it's definitely worthwhile. Things worth seeing in Kyoto could easily fill several books, and Osaka's the place for food and nightlife. Kobe has a more cosmopolitan feel.
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Old 2009-02-15, 02:05   Link #424
Princess Peach
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Hopefully soon ^^
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Old 2009-02-16, 16:48   Link #425
lixuelai
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Anyone planning on going to Summer Comiket?
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Old 2009-02-16, 18:50   Link #426
Guardian Enzo
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No, but I did notice that Tokyo Anime Fair is going on while I'm in town, so I hardly see how I can skip that.
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Old 2009-02-25, 22:13   Link #427
Ryuou
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Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Dying to get back to Japan (but currently near Chicago)
Age: 26
I checked this thread out before a long time ago, and then forgot it existed.

I'm really hoping that I can go back to Japan this summer for about three weeks. I've been suffering from withdrawals for a while now. Since I'm going to be taking summer classes next year, (and maybe the year after that if I don't graduate by then) if I can't go this summer, than I'm going to have to wait until I graduate before I can go back. Being away from Japan is pretty depressing for me as I initially had no intention of leaving, but then some things came up. If I do get to go, I'll just chill with family and friends. I wouldn't really be going on any trips to places unless I went on one with my family or friends.

And I guess I’ll ask these questions to stimulate some discussion in this thread.

What's your favorite place in Japan that you've been to?

Where's the number one place in Japan you would like to go?

I'm not sure on the first one at the moment, so I'll just answer my second question. And that would be Hokkaidou. I really want to check out the natural beauty of it, and maybe take the Gov up on their offer of free land. Haha.
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Old 2009-02-26, 07:42   Link #428
ZephyrLeanne
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[QUOTE=Ryuou;2237979]I checked this thread out before a long time ago, and then forgot it existed.

Quote:
I'm really hoping that I can go back to Japan this summer for about three weeks. I've been suffering from withdrawals for a while now. Since I'm going to be taking summer classes next year, (and maybe the year after that if I don't graduate by then) if I can't go this summer, than I'm going to have to wait until I graduate before I can go back. Being away from Japan is pretty depressing for me as I initially had no intention of leaving, but then some things came up. If I do get to go, I'll just chill with family and friends. I wouldn't really be going on any trips to places unless I went on one with my family or friends.
Haha, LOLZ. Never had that.

And I guess Ill ask these questions to stimulate some discussion in this thread.

Quote:
What's your favorite place in Japan that you've been to?
As a local. I would say Ebisu Gardens. It's in the heart of Tokyo, nice place, if you have cash. A friend of mine working in Ebisu brought me there once.

As a tourist, I would suggest Izumo for a day-trip. Izumo is home to the grand shrine of Japan, the Izumo Taisha shrine.

You may also like to visit Hiroshima/Nagasaki, especially Nagasaki for the Catholics.


Quote:
Where's the number one place in Japan you would like to go?
Oddly, as a local, I have never been to Hokkaido at all. I would like to go there once. Take a slow 10-day tour and relax. I have 2 years worth of leave to clear, so there.

Quote:
I'm not sure on the first one at the moment, so I'll just answer my second question. And that would be Hokkaidou. I really want to check out the natural beauty of it, and maybe take the Gov up on their offer of free land. Haha.
Free land has no strings attached, but then again, if it's free, there's something wrong about it. PM me for more.
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Old 2009-02-26, 15:14   Link #429
Ryuou
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Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Dying to get back to Japan (but currently near Chicago)
Age: 26
So Hokkaidou for you too huh, ShimatheKat.

Quote:
Haha, LOLZ. Never had that.
Well there's no problem if you leave Japan because you want to (i.e. vacation or just decide to move away), but I didn't leave because I wanted too. Thus my suffering.
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Old 2009-02-27, 09:44   Link #430
ZephyrLeanne
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Originally Posted by Ryuou View Post
So Hokkaidou for you too huh, ShimatheKat.
The cost makes it difficult. And traveling time too.

Quote:
Well there's no problem if you leave Japan because you want to (i.e. vacation or just decide to move away), but I didn't leave because I wanted too. Thus my suffering.
Oh.
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Old 2009-03-05, 15:50   Link #431
kokiafan
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Join Date: Jan 2009
is japan safe ?

i want to go to japan but i ve heard many things like foreign women are not safe in japan and the whole stabbing spree...

and for the ones who went to Japan, are the people there nice to foreigners ?
i ve heard that there is racial discrimination in japan

thanks ( sorry for my english)
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Old 2009-03-05, 15:56   Link #432
james0246
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Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: East Cupcake
LOL, Is anywhere safe?

Japan is, more or less, just like every other populace democratic country that a foreinger can visit. There is no more or less racism/violence in Japan compared to visiting most other nations on the planet. It is all fairly equal.

That being said, visit this thread to ask for which places to visit in Japan.

edit: damn, these posts were moved fast .
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Old 2009-03-05, 15:58   Link #433
solomon
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Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Suburban DC
Probably the only major industrialized first world country I have heard you may have trouble with is Russia.

You seriously don't want to get arrested in Japan, cause you will never get it off your record and have little chance of being exonorated.

But in all seriousness it's probably the most safe first world country today (much better chance of running into trouble in american cities as opposed to Tokyo, Osaka, etc.)
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Old 2009-03-05, 17:58   Link #434
Mystique
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Join Date: May 2008
Location: In the eastern capital of the islands of the rising suns...
Quote:
Originally Posted by kokiafan View Post
i want to go to japan but i ve heard many things like foreign women are not safe in japan and the whole stabbing spree...

and for the ones who went to Japan, are the people there nice to foreigners ?
i ve heard that there is racial discrimination in japan

thanks ( sorry for my english)
May I ask your gender/age/ethnicity, if you don't mind sharing?
I'm kinda curious to why you poised the question, was it something you heard I wonder?
Is Japan safe?
As someone mentioned in regards to the metro areas, 'as safe as any main city'
You always need to keep your wits about you, be street smart and sensible, aka don't walk in quiet dark places alone.
If you miss the last train about after 0.30, take a taxi and so on.

I'll admit though, to a degree, I take liberties with the fact that Tokyo is safer than London and will be walking around at night around midnight/1am on my own for a spell without being too concerned. Salarymen are kinda too drunk to even walk, let alone assult me, but nonetheless its better to be safe than sorry, so I try not to let my guard down completely.

Are people nice to foreigners?
Yes. If you go to Japan as a tourist (and planned the trip as you want it), you'll have one of the most magical, amazing times of your life.
If you live here as a resident, it's a different ballgame.

In that sense, you'll begin to see the cracks in the politeness mask that they don usubconsciously and see moments of discrimination.
The only difference in the form of discrimination is like a lot of things Japanese wise is, it's indirect and silent, but still very much felt.

Can be useful, means I don't get bombarded with flyers in Shinjuku cause they assume I can't understand Japanese or read kanji.
Also means I gotta fight to get those free tissues on the street though, they kinda withdraw their hands when they see me
(That's a very light and insignificant example I'm tossing, but you should get the idea...)
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Last edited by Mystique; 2009-03-05 at 18:09.
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Old 2009-03-06, 14:28   Link #435
lixuelai
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I would be more concerned about the police :P Funny (and scary for me) story. I got flagged down in Den Den Town in Osaka during the summer while I was on my study abroad. Not fun as I forgot to bring my passport. It took me awhile to actually believe the policemen were real policemen. They were in plain cloth and their badges looked pretty fake (just a picture and a badge on it, seems like something you can make with stuff in a toy store) and they didn't carry guns... They told me to follow them to the police box which is all fine and dandy except they were pointing down a dark side alley (later on I found out that it is on the next street over). Of course I refused to go so they said they will bring a squad car here (which happens to look like any other car off the street). They were just as puzzled as I was until I managed to puzzle out that the police box was not in some random alley... It all ended well though.
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Old 2009-03-06, 15:20   Link #436
Jill Valentine
 
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
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Originally Posted by lixuelai View Post
I would be more concerned about the police :P Funny (and scary for me) story. I got flagged down in Den Den Town in Osaka during the summer while I was on my study abroad. Not fun as I forgot to bring my passport. It took me awhile to actually believe the policemen were real policemen. They were in plain cloth and their badges looked pretty fake (just a picture and a badge on it, seems like something you can make with stuff in a toy store) and they didn't carry guns... They told me to follow them to the police box which is all fine and dandy except they were pointing down a dark side alley (later on I found out that it is on the next street over). Of course I refused to go so they said they will bring a squad car here (which happens to look like any other car off the street). They were just as puzzled as I was until I managed to puzzle out that the police box was not in some random alley... It all ended well though.

Lol now that i heard this i think i am going there with my parents O.O
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Old 2009-03-06, 21:45   Link #437
EmP|ty
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Haha, one of my friends is living in Tokyo now, says it is the best thing that has ever happened to him, apart from the plane journey there, but that's another story.

Although he lives in Tokyo and says he hasn't seen a single blade of grass in around 4 months lol 0.0
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Old 2009-03-06, 21:54   Link #438
Ryuou
進む道は武士道のみ
 
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Dying to get back to Japan (but currently near Chicago)
Age: 26
Quote:
Although he lives in Tokyo and says he hasn't seen a single blade of grass in around 4 months lol 0.0
Yeah that's an aspect of Tokyo that I hate. It's a concrete jungle.
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Old 2009-03-07, 06:30   Link #439
ZephyrLeanne
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Originally Posted by EmP|ty View Post
Haha, one of my friends is living in Tokyo now, says it is the best thing that has ever happened to him, apart from the plane journey there, but that's another story.

Although he lives in Tokyo and says he hasn't seen a single blade of grass in around 4 months lol 0.0
Go west, young man! West Tokyo [Tama] has a big park you can't miss.
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Old 2009-03-07, 06:39   Link #440
Mystique
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Originally Posted by Ryuou View Post
Yeah that's an aspect of Tokyo that I hate. It's a concrete jungle.

Uhh right, because Yoyogi park is just one big ass mass of sand, right?

Or even better, Uneo Park is an ocean!
And don't even get me started with Shinjuku Goen, Higashi Goen (near the Imperial palace), Hibiya Park.

Gee I know Tokyo is concrete haven than most cities in Japan, but parks do exist in freaking captial cities. The one's I listed are just tourist trap ones even.
Just walk off the main path, turn a corner or two and you may be pleasantly surprised at what you'll find, especially in a country like Japan.
</city slicker rant>
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