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Travel questions - Tokyo

MCS

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hello,

i have a few questions about my trip to Tokyo this autumn (early October- 1week).
it's still some time before we go but i want to gather lots of information beforehand.
didn't make a checklist with stuff i have questions about and i figure i'll be back to post more questions anyway, haha. but right now there's a few questions that i thought i'd just make a thread and maybe people who've been there before will respond.
I read this forum from time to time and have found some useful information already.
My girlfriend has been there before but not long because she mainly spent time in Osaka when in Japan. We're also meeting up there with someone who lives there but obviously we don't have a daily private guide for a whole week.
:p

When we arrive at narita we will make use of the airport limousine bus to get to the hotel in shinjuku
(it's the Sunroute Plaza hotel very close to the Shinjuku main station).
It'll be more comfortable not having to haul around with baggage on the subway and all too and the bus stops right at the sunroute's entrance so no need to search for it when i arrive.
when going back to narita at the end of the trip i heard bus service from the hotel is a bit limited but there are more airport buses going from Shinjuku station to Narita ?
we will have to take a bus back quite early in the morning to be in time for check-in time at the airport.

I also have a question about walking distances, subways are fast and once you're used to it quite easy but when there obviously we want to see lots of streets instead of hopping from train to train.
Not too worried about getting lost, i guess it's how you get to know a city best; getting lost and finding your way around.
On google earth you get an idea of distances but i still want to hear from people who've walked around a lot in Tokyo.
For instance, can you walk from shinjuku station to shibuya station, harajuku etc, how long do you think it takes at a normal pace ?
is it complicated or are there main roads you can sort of base yourself on to have an idea of where you are ?
How long would it take to walk from shinjuku station to shimokitazawa ?
is it better to just take the subway ? or is it not needed when you're not in a hurry and want to do some strolling and sightseeing going from one spot to the other ?

ochanomizu is also definitely on my list of spots to go to, there's lots of guitarshops and instrumentshops there ?
is it centred around two streets or bigger ? i guess it's more widespread than denmark street in london. haha.
it's on the other side of tokyo compared to shinjuku but is it managable on foot ? (shinjuku to akihabara, ochanomizu, ueno, asakusa)

visiting a cat café is definitely on our list of things to do too, any recommendations ?

we'll probably visit tsukiji fish market too on one of the days to have sushi for breakfast. any tips on this ? (timing, picking the right foodstall etc)

I'm checking lonelyplanet from time to time to make a list of bars, shops and other things i want to visit making screenshots of the locations in google maps.

any tips on good bars and eateries near Sunroute Plaza ? i also really want to try mos burger but love the traditional food, i'm crazy about unaju and unadon.

another small question; will i be able to use an lg ku990 viewty to make calls ?

i know it's a lot of asking and asking and there's probably more to come but i guess that's what forums are for. many thanks for your help already !
 

Elizabeth

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On google earth you get an idea of distances but i still want to hear from people who've walked around a lot in Tokyo.
For instance, can you walk from shinjuku station to shibuya station, harajuku etc, how long do you think it takes at a normal pace ?
http://www.japan-guide.com/forum/quereadisplay.html?0+71082
Add another 30 min (??) on foot from Shibuya station to Harajuku station (~3 km).

How long would it take to walk from shinjuku station to shimokitazawa ?

40 min. (or less) to an hour ? Kitazawa (One minute walk from Shimokitazawa station south exit)...😌
 

MCS

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thanks.


replies are quite a letdown i expected a bit more response, either because lots of people posting here haven't been there much or they just don't see the point bothering to respond. haha. no worries though. i sort of get it. my girlfriend's aunt lives in tokyo. i was kind of nervous about meeting up but she insists and i guess she'll know her way around so going out into the tokyo neon jungle is a bit less intimidating.
 

thomas

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@ Shinjuku -> Narita

Check the Limousine Bus website

=> http://www.limousinebus.co.jp/en/

@ Ochanomizu

Can easily be explored on foot. Famous for shops specialised in guitars and snowboarding gear. Jimbochou (just south of Ochanomizu, along Yasukuni-dori) is famous for its bookshops. Don't miss Yushima Seidō, a Confucian temple close to Shin-Ochanomizu Station.
 
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If you take a walk through Tokyo on foot, please use a shuttle bus free.
Bay area, Marunouchi, Nihonbashi area.
http://www.hinomaru.co.jp/metrolink/index.html
marunouchi_bus1jpeg-1.jpg


marunouchi_BusStopJPG-1.jpg


A shuttle bus of the low fare
Shibuya Community Bus-"Hachiko Bus"
http://www.city.shibuya.tokyo.jp/eng/com_bus/index.html



Shibuya and Daikanyam
http://www.transses.co.jp/index.html

Taito-ku "Megurin"

Ueno Asakusa
http://www.city.taito.tokyo.jp/index/064582/054580.html
 

Elizabeth

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You may want to break down the questions on a specialty Japan travel forum for better luck. Most of the info is easily available via guide books, Google Earth (for tracing walking routes...), though, as a starting point. And Tokyoites themslves are extremely polite and friendly and receptive to questions. Good luck !

http://www.japan-guide.com/forum
 

MCS

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thanks for the useful links ! sites are in japanese mostly but i can deal with kana and hiragana just kanji are problematic, thankfully my girlfriend can read it perfectly. or almost haha...rusty japanese.

if anyone has any idea on this : is it true the average 'gig' time for bands playing is as early as 5pm ? do you have to show up at 4pm to be able to get in ?
(especially interested in the shimokitazawa area..if anyone knows other areas with lots of underground bands playing ? punk, noise, stoner, sludge, doom etc)
 

Elizabeth

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thanks for the useful links ! sites are in japanese mostly but i can deal with kana and hiragana just kanji are problematic, thankfully my girlfriend can read it perfectly. or almost haha...rusty japanese.
if anyone has any idea on this : is it true the average 'gig' time for bands playing is as early as 5pm ? do you have to show up at 4pm to be able to get in ?
(especially interested in the shimokitazawa area..if anyone knows other areas with lots of underground bands playing ? punk, noise, stoner, sludge, doom etc)
More like 6:30 or 7 I think. You should be there by 6...

And you can find underground bands on sidewalks or hole-in-the-wall bars of Shibuya, Shinjuku and Kichijoji, etc but shimokitazawa is the mecca for Japanese counter-culture more than any other area in Tokyo. My b-f loves it too (but only for jazz and guitar....:( :D)
 
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