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Planning a trip to japan, anyone got any hotspots or tips/tricks?

Been saving for about a year now, 2300 euro so far. Planning on taking a trip to the far east. Big pokemon fan, anime fan, ww2 enthousiast and all that. Do you have any hotspots I should visit? Any hotels you recommend? Anything information would be welcome. 

 

I have personally done a lot of research but there could be a lot of hidden gems you cant easily find online.

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Do you already have a general idea of where you'd like to go?

 

I've only been to Japan once and so I'm not very knowledgeable when it comes to the more hidden locations, but I would definitely recommend visiting Nara. It's really close if you plan to visit either Kyoto or Osaka and it's probably the most surreal experience I've ever had. I'm sure you've seen pictures, but there are hundreds of deer walking around freely in Nara, and they're quite friendly as well. It also has a very nice temple area with a giant buddha statue if you're more interested in the cultural bits.

 

Aside from that, as a fellow Pokemon fan, I'd recommend going to a Pokemon Center. I think there are multiple locations, I've personally been to the one in Tokyo's Ikebukuro district. They have a ton of merchandise and at the time I'd been there, it was super cheap due to the Euro being comparatively strong. (I may or may not have bought way too much because of that)

 

There's also a manga museum in Kyoto which I'd recommend for rainy days. It's all in Japanese if I recall correctly, so unless you're somewhat proficient in Japanese it's less about actually being able to read the books and more about the novelty of the sheer volume of manga they have, but it can still be worthwhile.

 

I could go on and on, but maybe you can let us know which cities you're planning to visit?

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Akibara. It's amazing can spend a lifes savings there. also some of the huge tech malls and game stores.

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12 hours ago, aaradorn said:

Been saving for about a year now, 2300 euro so far. Planning on taking a trip to the far east. Big pokemon fan, anime fan, ww2 enthousiast and all that. Do you have any hotspots I should visit?

Tokyo is going to be your Mecca for all your nerdy needs. The spots you definitely want to hit are Akihabara, Odaiba, and Shinjuku. You could also hit up Harajuku if you're into the weird.  If you have more time, I would recommend going to Osaka and Kyoto.

 

For WWII stuff, I'm not too sure outside of the obvious cities of Nagasaki and Hiroshima. Heck I would argue for WWII buffs to visit Okinawa since that's where the last major battles took place. There are some sites there dedicated to WWII stuff too. But the only problem is Okinawa is really out of the way for someone visiting the mainland.

 

12 hours ago, aaradorn said:

Any hotels you recommend? Anything information would be welcome. 

I'd argue the only way you'd get a "Japanese experience" is to go to a Ryokan, but those are really pricey to stay at for anything other than a short term stay. I suppose for the other "Japanese experience", you could check out a capsule hotel.

 

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When I did Japan around 2 years ago with my SO I spent around $2000 USD for 2 weeks, airfare included. AirBnB helped. 
Also plan out your travel in advance. A lot of people say the JRPass is amazing but I found it to be more expensive than just doing regular trips with each leg planned in advance to avoid overlap. 

Vending machines + convenience stores are great. Akihabara is nerd heaven. 

As others stated, Kyoto, Osaka, Nara and Tokyo are places you'll want to check out. I'd probably place Kyoto and Tokyo the highest on that list. 

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14 hours ago, Yeroh said:

Do you already have a general idea of where you'd like to go?

 

I've only been to Japan once and so I'm not very knowledgeable when it comes to the more hidden locations, but I would definitely recommend visiting Nara. It's really close if you plan to visit either Kyoto or Osaka and it's probably the most surreal experience I've ever had. I'm sure you've seen pictures, but there are hundreds of deer walking around freely in Nara, and they're quite friendly as well. It also has a very nice temple area with a giant buddha statue if you're more interested in the cultural bits.

 

Aside from that, as a fellow Pokemon fan, I'd recommend going to a Pokemon Center. I think there are multiple locations, I've personally been to the one in Tokyo's Ikebukuro district. They have a ton of merchandise and at the time I'd been there, it was super cheap due to the Euro being comparatively strong. (I may or may not have bought way too much because of that)

 

There's also a manga museum in Kyoto which I'd recommend for rainy days. It's all in Japanese if I recall correctly, so unless you're somewhat proficient in Japanese it's less about actually being able to read the books and more about the novelty of the sheer volume of manga they have, but it can still be worthwhile.

 

I could go on and on, but maybe you can let us know which cities you're planning to visit?

I have a very comprehensive list of al lthe things I want to see but most of it is just a one a day thing. Like visiting a museum, but then what?

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me and my friend are heading over on Jan 16th for ~10 days. It's not a hotspot but one thing to do is try all the different kit-kat flavors that aren't normally found in your country. we are also very excited to checkout the arcades and game shops.

Nothing to see here, move along

 

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You seem to like animals. How about the owl cafe in Tokyo where you can pet real owls. I believe they also started a raccoon cafe.

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1 hour ago, Teddy07 said:

You seem to like animals. How about the owl cafe in Tokyo where you can pet real owls. I believe they also started a raccoon cafe.

Thats incredible. And yes I love animals. My profile picture is one I made myself at a local zoo.

25a.jpg

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1 hour ago, Riddler356 said:

me and my friend are heading over on Jan 16th for ~10 days. It's not a hotspot but one thing to do is try all the different kit-kat flavors that aren't normally found in your country. we are also very excited to checkout the arcades and game shops.

Not a fan of kit kats in general but I have to try some of the limited edition japan only kit kats. They are just weird.

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11 hours ago, comander said:

When I did Japan around 2 years ago with my SO I spent around $2000 USD for 2 weeks, airfare included. AirBnB helped. 
Also plan out your travel in advance. A lot of people say the JRPass is amazing but I found it to be more expensive than just doing regular trips with each leg planned in advance to avoid overlap. 

Vending machines + convenience stores are great. Akihabara is nerd heaven. 

As others stated, Kyoto, Osaka, Nara and Tokyo are places you'll want to check out. I'd probably place Kyoto and Tokyo the highest on that list. 

2000USD is not that much. We will start planning as soon as my girlfriend gets her new nationality. We will probably get a JR rail pass, we want to see as much as possible, we calculated some thing out and quickly realised that a JR pass is probably cheaper for us.

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2 hours ago, aaradorn said:

My profile picture is one I made myself at a local zoo.

?

I love red panadas. They are just awesome and my favorite animal ?

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3 hours ago, aaradorn said:

2000USD is not that much. We will start planning as soon as my girlfriend gets her new nationality. We will probably get a JR rail pass, we want to see as much as possible, we calculated some thing out and quickly realised that a JR pass is probably cheaper for us.

true, we were going to save longer to also see Kyoto, and just a round trip from Tokyo to Kyoto and back was the same price as a week JRP which would be much better. but we said screw it and go asap, so just metro is enough as everything is in Akihabara, or walking distance for us. Have fun on your trip man.

Nothing to see here, move along

 

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4 hours ago, Teddy07 said:

You seem to like animals. How about the owl cafe in Tokyo where you can pet real owls. I believe they also started a raccoon cafe.

if there is a racoon cafe, i definitely have to go, I love trash pandas.

 

3 hours ago, aaradorn said:

Thats incredible. And yes I love animals. My profile picture is one I made myself at a local zoo.

Nice, sorry for jumping in the tread and stealing ideas, it's just they are some good ideas

 

Nothing to see here, move along

 

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6 hours ago, aaradorn said:

2000USD is not that much. We will start planning as soon as my girlfriend gets her new nationality. We will probably get a JR rail pass, we want to see as much as possible, we calculated some thing out and quickly realised that a JR pass is probably cheaper for us.

Check. Going off of personal experiences and this - https://thriftynomads.com/the-japan-rail-pass-worth-the-cost/ YMMV. In my case two Shinkansen tickets + a bunch of local travel ended up being something like $30 cheaper. There is a convenience factor to the JR pass and you do get more flexibility (though if you booked your housing in advance this doesn't matter). The JR pass doesn't work for all tickets though. 


Also one thing to be aware of is that I wasn't doing anything fancy... at some level I saw a bunch of the stuff, walked around a bunch of things but didn't eat at the fanciest of restaurants or stay at the nicest of places. 

I was also there at a time when the USD:Yen rate was about 10% in my favor relative to today. I expect the same trip, with inflation would be around 15% more expensive right now (in USD)

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On 12/10/2019 at 5:47 AM, aaradorn said:

Been saving for about a year now, 2300 euro so far. Planning on taking a trip to the far east. Big pokemon fan, anime fan, ww2 enthousiast and all that. Do you have any hotspots I should visit? Any hotels you recommend? Anything information would be welcome. 

 

I have personally done a lot of research but there could be a lot of hidden gems you cant easily find online.

How much time do you have?

You can make 2300 euro last if you know how to travel cheaply. Staying in hostels is cheap, even if Japan is an expensive place there are people who are dirt poor there and yet survive on $1/day and live until they are 105 yrs old!

 

Buy a tourist book, Lonely Planet and another is Rick Steve's which may do Japan, he is mostly europa.

 

I would try to get on a train that does 500000mph

I would hit all the touristy spots and hit them fast and hard and get them out of the way quickly, Mount Fuji is one place to hit

Then try to get off the beaten path.

 

If you are into anima, then hitting a few of the 24/7/365 large computer cafes where you basically live there for cheap, is an option for a place to sleep, i have seen many shows on tv showing poor people living in those places.

 

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