Trip Report: Japan 2012 – Day 7 – Kyoto and Nara Day Tour

So, in order to maximize the intake of cultural sites, we arranged for a day-tour of Kyoto and Nara. If you’re ever in the area, we suggest you do the same. We arranged our tour via Japanican, a subsidiary of JTB. One can only do so many temples and shrines, but this tour gives a really nice overview, and makes accessing Nara easy. I should add, there is an important reason why you should see Nara along with Kyoto and Tokyo – by doing so, you’d be visiting the New Capital (Tokyo, 1869-present), the Old Capital (Kyoto, 784-1868), and the Ancient Capital (Nara, 710-784).

But, to begin, the Japanese breakfast of champions: 7-11 musubi and coffee.

7-11 Musubi and Coffee. Image Credit: Ryan.

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Trip Report: Japan 2012 – Day 3, Tokyo Disney Sea and a Journey to Nostalgia

This is going to be a quick and dirty post. Largely because, although we went to Tokyo Disney Sea, we actually didn’t do anything there. Turns out, the day we went, it was the last Friday of Japan’s Spring Break. Every single ride had a 2-3+ hour wait time; every food cart for stinking popcorn must have had an hour long wait, too. Okay, the truth is that we’re not really Disney people. You may be and can handle the lines and the mouse ears and the good cheer. So, more power to you. My one contribution to your experience – these are two links to Japan Disney Crowd Calendars: here (English) and here (Japanese). According to those calendars, we chose a day that ranked a 95 out of 100 on crowd size. I recommend choosing more wisely.

Pictures start off on the Disney Monorail. From Tokyo Station, it only takes about 15 minutes to get to Maihama Station in Chiba Prefecture (fronting Disney). From there, it’s a short walk to the Monorail.

On the Disney Monorail. Image Credit: T.

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Trip Report: Japan 2012 – Day 2, Part 1 – Tsukiji and 3 Breakfasts

Day 2 started around 3:00am because we were attempting to get to Tsukiji Fish Market and into the fish auction tour. Trains don’t run that early in the morning, so if you’re headed to Tsukiji in the early morning, you’ll have to catch a cab. Tourists who wish to see the auction have to apply at the O-Sakana Fukyu Center at the Kachidoki Gate, starting from 4:00am on a first-come, first-serve basis (and best be in line by 3:00am) for two groups of 60, starting around 5:25am and 5:50am. Just ask your cab driver to drop you off in the right spot.

As it turns out, we were not able to get there in time and a huge line had already formed. So, what to do at 4:30 in the morning? Find coffee. Which we did.

Coffee at Tsukiji. Image Credit: T.

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