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Travel Traveling in December 2014

Joined
Oct 6, 2014
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1
Hi guys,
This is my first day checking out this forum, but I saw that the environment here seems both informative and supportive and so I thought I'd make an account and ask for some advice. I'll be traveling to Tokyo in early December and staying in Japan for roughly 3 weeks, with my departure back to the states happening on Christmas eve. I've been doing quite a bit of reading to prepare, but could use some advice about things worth seeing and about how much time I should dedicate toward going to different sites and cities. I'll be in the country in part because it's school-related, but prior to the dates I have dedicated for that I can do whatever I would like. I've wanted to visit ever since I was a kid and so this is kind of a dream vacation for me, and as I most likely will not be able to return for many years I want to get the most out of it as possible.
Here's a rough timeline for how things are scheduled for me right now:
Arrive: Tokyo, December 5th
School commitment: Tokyo, December 14th through the 21st
Depart: Tokyo, December 24th
Right now my itinerary includes buying a rail pass and going to Kyoto and Hiroshima/Miyajima. I've got a lot of questions, but here are a few of them:
If I do this, I'll have from the 5th through the 14th to travel outside of Tokyo. How many days in each location do you think I should allot myself?
How much time should I allow myself in Tokyo to acclimate to the time zone and environs prior to visiting other parts of the country?
How long will travel take between Tokyo -> Kyoto and Kyoto-> Hiroshima, and then Hiroshima -> Tokyo?
Are there other cities worth visiting in between these destinations?
I'm interested in castles, museums, temples, so basically everything is on the table in regards to actual activities. What I'm really wondering is if you can advise me about whether there are things worth doing that tourist guides might glaze over, and how much time I should allow myself in different places.
Thank you!
 
Joined
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If I do this, I'll have from the 5th through the 14th to travel outside of Tokyo. How many days in each location do you think I should allot myself?
Depends on how deeply interested you are in your list below, how busy they are, and whether you find them truly interesting.

I'm interested in castles, museums, temples, so basically everything is on the table in regards to actual activities.
There is far more to do than just those 3 things.

How much time should I allow myself in Tokyo to acclimate to the time zone and environs prior to visiting other parts of the country?
It all depends on the person and where you travel from. Coming from the US, and depending on what time you land, you might acclimatize in 24 hours. I usually do. Others I have know will need 2-3 days.

How long will travel take between Tokyo -> Kyoto and Kyoto-> Hiroshima, and then Hiroshima -> Tokyo?
Use the www.hyperdia.com site and see. Depends on what type of transportation you use. Some city websites will also tell you.

Are there other cities worth visiting in between these destinations?
Yes, but they may not be directly geographically in between.

What I'm really wondering is if you can advise me about whether there are things worth doing that tourist guides might glaze over, and how much time I should allow myself in different places.
Thank you!
I suggest doing a search with "off the beaten trail/path" and the city names or Japan as keywords.
 
Joined
Mar 4, 2007
Messages
14
Hi,
Excuse me for hijacking this but we're also going to be in Japan in December:) Well, a couple of days of January, too.
My main concern now is your weather so I would really appreciate an insightful update from the local experts.
We take ferry from Busan to Fukuoka on 27th and then plan moving northwards by train to Osaka, Kyoto and Tokyo. So you think is there a high risk of ferry cancellations on the said route? Is it operational now?
And can those trains be affected by the weather? I heard some get stranded due to the heavy snowfall.
Thank you:)
 

Mike Cash

骨も命も皆此の土地に埋めよう
Joined
Mar 15, 2002
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Hi,
Excuse me for hijacking this but we're also going to be in Japan in December:) Well, a couple of days of January, too.
My main concern now is your weather so I would really appreciate an insightful update from the local experts.
We take ferry from Busan to Fukuoka on 27th and then plan moving northwards by train to Osaka, Kyoto and Tokyo. So you think is there a high risk of ferry cancellations on the said route? Is it operational now?
And can those trains be affected by the weather? I heard some get stranded due to the heavy snowfall.
Thank you:)
Rather than threadjacking three threads you could have started just one and put all your questions together in one place....

I don't think you need to worry about the ferry or the trains.
 
Joined
Mar 4, 2007
Messages
14
Thanks, Mike:thumbsup:
Hopefully, the weather won't let us down. I was worried because there wasn't much good about Japanese weather in the news recently...
Regarding the threads, as an IT person, I'm always conscious about the DB size:geek:
Starting a new thread generally needs more resources than continuing the existing one. So if I find relevant topics, I tend to use them:) Hope that makes sense.
 

Mike Cash

骨も命も皆此の土地に埋めよう
Joined
Mar 15, 2002
Messages
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Thanks, Mike:thumbsup:
Hopefully, the weather won't let us down. I was worried because there wasn't much good about Japanese weather in the news recently...
Regarding the threads, as an IT person, I'm always conscious about the DB size:geek:
Starting a new thread generally needs more resources than continuing the existing one. So if I find relevant topics, I tend to use them:) Hope that makes sense.
So adding three posts in hopes at least one reply to each (for a total of six posts) adds less to database size than two posts? Don't even bother explaining that to me; I'm not smart enough to understand the answer. Googling info about the weather in Japan would have grown the database not at all....

Our recently revised Forum Rules specifically ask that people not threadjack.
 
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