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m_candy
09-06-2007, 12:25 AM
Hey!
I was just wondering if anyone is going to be in Tokyo in Feb for wonderfest! I'm 95% sure that I am going! Woot! My first time in Japan!
Maybe I will see you there!
Michelle

Zen-Builder
09-06-2007, 03:09 AM
I should be there, not far from my place.

FilmMkr
09-06-2007, 08:45 PM
I'm heading back to Japan next year, but February is a really busy time of year for us in my studio. I'll see what the dates are for the shows we're producing and maybe I can work it out. WF Summer might be better for me (again!).

m_candy
09-06-2007, 11:16 PM
I'm heading back to Japan next year, but February is a really busy time of year for us in my studio. I'll see what the dates are for the shows we're producing and maybe I can work it out. WF Summer might be better for me (again!).

Bah! You have to come!!! It would be soo much fun! You only need a week or so off! It'll be good times! It'll be alot cheaper if you go in Feb. I was thinking about the summer time too but man the plane ticket is double and I want to spend that money on kits lol ( I have been saving for this for almost 3 years! lol)
Work it out! :whip:

Zen-Builder
09-07-2007, 02:00 AM
I might not be able to meet you for WF, but if you got questions feel free to ask away. At the moment it looks like I might be running a table again.

FilmMkr
09-07-2007, 02:32 PM
Bah! You have to come!!! It would be soo much fun! You only need a week or so off! It'll be good times!

LOL - well, let me see how things shape up. I'd prefer to go when its cooler, actually - Tokyo in August is as hot as Houston in August! LOL.

You wouldn't want to meet up with me anyway - I'd drag your ass to all the out-of-the way sculptor's studios and model shops that the tourists don't know about and then you'd have to spend big money on all the gorgeous original kits you'd discover. Model-hopping in Tokyo with Filmy? Are you sure you can handle it?

Dr.H
09-07-2007, 10:31 PM
I hope everyone who decides to go has a great time! Take lots of pics and enjoy the non-melting temps ;).

My first financial chance I'd like to head to Japan with my wife one fall/winter. It's the 20+ hr flight at $1200+ per person that is so daunting. I'm sure I'd have a few hrs layover in Tokyo to do some quick shopping but I'm not sure I'd stay there long if I was going for vaca since I'm more of a slow paced, relax and see the culture type of person.
To think you could easily blow $5000 just on flight and hotel for a week without food or goodies lol I need to win the lotto :P.
Of course if we decide to have a kid in the next year or so I can kiss Japan goodbye lol.

serogane
09-08-2007, 02:21 AM
I've been thinking about going to the February one since July of this year, but with the acquisition of my recent job, I'll only have 12 days of vacation time for the first year, which isn't nearly long enough for a good time in Japan.

My original plan was to go for a month next February and stay at hostels for a month. Now I may have to cut the plan short or not go at all. :(

m_candy
09-08-2007, 12:52 PM
LOL - well, let me see how things shape up. I'd prefer to go when its cooler, actually - Tokyo in August is as hot as Houston in August! LOL.

You wouldn't want to meet up with me anyway - I'd drag your ass to all the out-of-the way sculptor's studios and model shops that the tourists don't know about and then you'd have to spend big money on all the gorgeous original kits you'd discover. Model-hopping in Tokyo with Filmy? Are you sure you can handle it?

Once again... BAHHH YOU HAVE TO COME!!!!
Omg that sounds soo awesome! I love spending all of my money on wonderful kits! Oh I can handle it!!! I might pee myself from all the excitement but oh well lol :drool:
Think about how cool it would be! 2 foreigners going into shops and buying up the place lol. I bet I could talk them into some deals (pretty girls get special treatment lol) I'm going to buy my ticket next month... What do you need to get into wonderfest? Do you need to buy a ticket of something?
Yay I'm getting excited!:hubba:

FilmMkr
09-08-2007, 03:20 PM
When you get to Tokyo, go to the Kaiyodo store in Akihabara (across from the train station).

http://i11.photobucket.com/albums/a176/FilmMkr/Japan%202006/One/Kaiyodo-I.jpg

http://i11.photobucket.com/albums/a176/FilmMkr/Japan%202006/One/Kaiyodo-II.jpg

http://i11.photobucket.com/albums/a176/FilmMkr/Japan%202006/One/Dragon.jpg


You'll buy a book there with all of the vendors listed - its sort of a "program" - that acts as your admission. You just hold it up as you walk in the doors at Tokyo Big Sight.

http://i11.photobucket.com/albums/a176/FilmMkr/WF%20Japan%202006/Kits/Otaku-Cue.jpg


'Course if you went with me you'd prob'ly have to bypass the lines and get in ahead of all the crowds, 'cause I get press passes. ::thumb

http://i11.photobucket.com/albums/a176/FilmMkr/WF%20Japan%202006/Kits/Press-Goodies.jpg

http://i11.photobucket.com/albums/a176/FilmMkr/WF%20Japan%202006/Kits/Cat-Daddy-Entrance.jpg

Zen-Builder
09-08-2007, 07:44 PM
Rather than worrying about the fest itself.

Get started on booking acomodations, planning where to stay, how much you want to spend each day on public transport(it adds up), etc.
Some Hostels and other cheap rooms need to be booked, months in advance.

Another thing are dietary requirements like vegetarian/vegan(bassically unknown here), etc.

serogane
09-09-2007, 02:52 AM
I thought Buddhism was huge in Japan. Aren't Buddhists vegan?

May be my misconception.

Zen-Builder
09-09-2007, 03:05 AM
I thought Buddhism was huge in Japan. Aren't Buddhists vegan?
May be my misconception.

Japanese Buddhist Priests even drive Mercs and other luxury cars.
Proper Monks cuisine will set you back about $40~$50 a meal.

Main religion in Japan is Shinto.

serogane
09-09-2007, 03:09 AM
Proper Monks cuisine will set you back about $40~$50 a meal.

Crazy.


Main religion in Japan is Shinto.

Don't know why I keep forgetting that.

Zen-Builder
09-09-2007, 03:12 AM
There are vegan restaurants in tokyo, not many and pretty pricey for what you get.

Many japanese dishes say vegetable but sauces and soups still use fish, pork, etc ingredients. Example: Ramen soup is usually NOT vegetarian.

Ferio
09-09-2007, 03:19 AM
There are vegan restaurants in tokyo, not many and pretty pricey for what you get.

Many japanese dishes say vegetable but sauces and soups still use fish, pork, etc ingredients. Example: Ramen soup is usually NOT vegetarian.

There are fish-based and vegetable based ramen soups, but are very hard to find.

That being said I am a vegetarian and rarely have a problem in finding something to eat. You may need to ask to have the meat removed, many restaurants will do this.

Lived here for seven years and only a few times have I been in situations where there was nothing on the menu. Mainly when my staff insised on going to a ramen shop, but they often serve green salads or some option.

It is funny when my g/f and I go out to eat. She does eat meat and when they deliver the orders the wait staff almost invariably switches the orders so she gets the meatless dish and I get the steak.

Ferio

Zen-Builder
09-09-2007, 03:22 AM
Same with my Wife she eats fish but no meat.

Ferio
09-09-2007, 03:26 AM
It would help if you would describe what level of vegetarian you are. Veggie, vegan, macro-biotic? Pescatarian?

Then possibly more help can be given.

Zen-Builder
09-09-2007, 03:28 AM
For train-ticket prices and commuting times, etc use this site:

http://www.hyperdia.com/cgi-english/hyperWeb.cgi

Just enter your starting point and your destination and follow the instructions.
It will give you multiple options with where to transfer, time-tables, prices, etc.

Zen-Builder
09-09-2007, 04:12 AM
As was said if you got dietary requirements let us know and we can help.

My suggestion are study the Hirakana and Katakana and the Kanji for the numbers prior to coming to japan(minimum).
Lots of places still write the prices in kanji and not romanized numbers.

And be warned some of the sushi/sashimi is so fresh it is still moving. ;)

m_candy
09-09-2007, 09:56 AM
I have already found a hotel in ueno that goes for about 60 can dollars a day and have confirmed with them the dates that I may be staying. They said they should have no problems as long as I confirm the dates before christmas. It's about a 5 minute walk to the JR Ueno station which should bring me to most of my destinations I want to go to.
Thanks to the girly japanese fashion magazines I understand the cost of some foods and good for your foods as well lol (I like junk food but I find myself living on it when I travel). I have spent the last 2 months looking into things like that also trying to get down the basics of the japanese language. Now I want to see what I am actually going to do there lol.
I'm still a little freaked out since this will be the first time I have gone to a country that I have no family or friends and I am not very familiar with the language. However my fears don't over weigh my excitement which is good! but still scary non the less.
I hope with my english to japanese dictonary in hand I can have a good time there!
P.S FilmMkr you should still come dammit!!!!

Dr.H
09-09-2007, 02:45 PM
It seems you've been preparing yourself for your trip m_candy :) thats really good.
I think a large amount of the populous in Japan speak some English. How much English people know for a non-Japanese speaker to get by I'm not sure but zen-builder and Ferio will know.
I can see the fear you might have in visiting a new country.. lol it kind of freaks me out and I'm not even going yet :P.
I think it will be an experience you'll remember for the rest of your life. ;) You might decide not to come back.

Zen-Builder
09-09-2007, 03:46 PM
Glad that you got your Hotel sorted out, some of the cheaper places that charge like 3.000Yen per room/night get booked out soon.

Japanese learn english in school, but often never get to use it afterwards, so english speaking ability varies widely. Rather assume that they cannot and you should be ok, this also includes places like McD, etc.

One word of warning, the area around Ueno and Okachimachi has a lot of pickpockets and similar crimes.

HTH.

m_candy
09-09-2007, 04:31 PM
Glad that you got your Hotel sorted out, some of the cheaper places that charge like 3.000Yen per room/night get booked out soon.

Japanese learn english in school, but often never get to use it afterwards, so english speaking ability varies widely. Rather assume that they cannot and you should be ok, this also includes places like McD, etc.

One word of warning, the area around Ueno and Okachimachi has a lot of pickpockets and similar crimes.

HTH.

Oh really! Pickpockets! I read something about how Japan is one of the only countries that use cash for there main use of payment (in canada it's all debit and credit cards lol) so I am probably going to be holding alot of cash alot of the time!
I have looked into some hostels but it doesn't seem like your stuff is very secure and I am going to be buying lots of stuff. There is another hotel in Shinjuku I was going to book but the room seems so hotelish and the one in ueno was a tatami room with a futon which i like lol. Do you have any suggestions?
Thank you for your opinion! It's really making me think of other things that I need to work out before I go!

Zen-Builder
09-09-2007, 04:42 PM
Yes, Japan still uses a lot of cash but credit-cards are also common now. Not traveller cheques though.
You should be fine carrying cash, even larger amounts.
Some guys bring $2000~3000 for WF.

Will need to check for other Hotels and collect opinons on a japan related forum I belong to. Most of my friends stay at the Kimi-Ryokan in Ikebukuro and are happy there.
http://www.kimi-ryokan.jp/

But that might be a bit far for frequents trips to Akiba though.

HTH.

Zen-Builder
09-09-2007, 05:08 PM
Also for the Tokyo travellers let us know what you want to do or see besides the Anime related stuff.

m_candy
09-10-2007, 01:46 AM
Hey! I was looking into that hotel too! I was just not sure since it seemed kinda far from the train station (not that I am lazy but I don't want to walk far if I have to come to the hotel by myself at night time)

This might sound strange... but I want to go to some bike shops!
I love seeing all different kinds of bikes and I know that they have alot of fixed gears there ( a type of bike with no brakes or gears). I have one and I need some parts!
Do you know if there are any festivals going on in Feb? I would really like to go to one but I won't be able to get time off during the spring time.
Oh and is Disney tokyo over rated? I have never been to a theme park before and was thinking I should check it out but being by myself might be lame.
Hmmmm I have planned to see a couple of shrines and other historical aspects as well but I really want a concrete plan for wonderfest because I have heard it gets pretty hectic lol.

Zen-Builder
09-10-2007, 02:02 AM
Whoah, lots of questions.

First of all there are tons of good bike shops in tokyo, let me know what parts you are after.

Festivals in february = few, except for the buddhist ones close to shrines(held 3-times a month). August/September is the main season, we had 5 locally last weekend.

Disney Tokyo is ok, but kinda dated. There is a good indoor one in Ikebukuro called Namja-town. Inside a major shopping center that also sells imported goods. Next to a huge Animate(Anime) store.

For Shrines I got a few good leads, used to work close to a shinto and buddhist shrine in the edo-area of town. You can even see the portable shrines used in local festivals.

As for walking late at night Japan is pretty safe, so no worries.

Ikebukuro is a tad more rural/local than Shinjuku/Ueno, but close to Shinjuku, Harajuku, Shibuya and also Nakano Broadway(the 2nd otaku centre).


Was going to post a link to Danny Choo's site about Nakano Broadway, but it got hacked.
Bassically it is a building of 4 floors of mostly anime related goods and the HQ of Mandarake(16 shops).
With Akihabara dying this is going to be the new centre.


HTH.

Zen-Builder
09-10-2007, 02:38 AM
As for WF.
You got 2 options camping out or getting there as early as possible.
Talking here about taking the first train at 05:30, etc. And waiting in queue for a few hours.

Said that you can leave your bags(minus camera, wallet) in the queue as a place holder and go shopping, they will be there(untouched) when you get back.

My advise is get your guide-book as early as you can, I pre-order mine at my LHS(yep sold at model shops and book-stores across tokyo).
It not only list the dealers(and their goods), but also shows where they are in the event.
And plan the stalls you want to hit in order, it will help a lot.

Next WF it looks like I will be a dealer again, so I got to be there early to setup table. No Queue. :)

HTH.

Zen-Builder
09-10-2007, 08:12 PM
A few links:
http://www.dannychoo.com/blog_entry/eng/523/Nakano+Broadway/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Animate
http://www.mandarake.co.jp/english/shop/

Zen-Builder
09-11-2007, 12:41 AM
One thing.

Most likely you guys will never meet me, as I stopped giving guided tours some years ago.

If you got questions or worries ask away, I will give you the low-down. No candy-coated version, this does not mean that I am a nay-sayer.
I simply tell things as they are.

Example:
IMO(and others), Ikebukuro is a good place for a first-time visitor to stay.
Very down to earth area with a ton of shops, cinemas, restaurants, an observation platform, indoor amusement park, museum and aquarium.
Also a very safe area, others like Ueno or Shinjuku are not as safe.

Still easy to get around as it is fairly close to areas like Shinjuku or Shibuya, major transit point for commuters.

HTH.

Ferio
09-11-2007, 04:29 AM
Actually I think the Ikebukuro Ryokan is a good choice.

Yes, you may need to travel a bit, but the location is nice, it is a known quantity from your friend's experience and it makes for a good spring point to almost anywhere you want to go.

Actually, after a day or so Akibara gets old fast. There is so much to see in Tokyo that it defies explanation. This is a city that changes quickly as you walk through its neighborhoods. You really need to just get out and walk around areas that are a bit off the beaten path. Don't be afraid to explore.

There are a few of us here who live and work in Japan and can give advice so please ask questions. We can help advise you as to interesting places to see, but can't help with guided tours.

Ferio

Dr.H
09-11-2007, 05:58 AM
Lol it's a good thing no one asked of a guided tour :p .
Your advice seems very helpful guys ;) thank you.

Zen-Builder
09-11-2007, 06:21 AM
Actually, I agree with Ferio.

Plenty of things to see outside the well trodden tourist areas and some are way better and more interesting.
Example: This is Zen-Buddhist shrine that was close to my office.
http://yabu.s5.xrea.com/photos/monzennakacho051202.jpg

Even areas like akihabara, the average tourist gets to see a fraction of what is truly there. They usually confine themselves to a few shops/buildings and miss the good deals.

Just my thoughts.

Dr.H
09-11-2007, 06:27 AM
I love watching those shows on the travel channel where the hosts go all over the world. It does seem they see the neatest things and save a lot of money by getting off the beaten path so to say.
I guess it would matter a lot on how much time there is. m_candy did you plan to just go for the WF or were you going to add a few days for looking around?

Zen-Builder
09-11-2007, 06:40 AM
Tip for travellers on a budget.

Forget fast-food too pricey.
Main-meal for most japanese workers is often lunch.
You can pick up a bento for about 500yen from street-vendors or a Combini.

Other option is look for restaurants that offer lunch-specials, usually between 800~1000yen.
You will get a full set-meal with soup, salad, main-dish, etc plus a drink.
Something like this - http://www.flickr.com/photos/danburgmurmur/1231741280/

Compare that to a bowl of Ramen that will set you back between 600~800Yen.

Eating out in evenings a-la-carte can get pricey.

HTH.

Masa
09-11-2007, 10:45 AM
Remember there was this thread (http://www.gkjapan.com/showthread.php?t=446) too ;)

m_candy
09-12-2007, 09:38 PM
I want a guided tour! lol J/K I think I would love getting lost in Tokyo!
I mean I will plan things as best as I can but I know that when I get there things won't always go according to plan.
Hey another question! Is it easy to get around on a bike? Do you think a bike rental would be worth it? or are the streets really crowded?

Zen-Builder
09-12-2007, 09:45 PM
Don't worry getting lost in Tokyo is fun.

I wouldn't use a bike to get around the centre of Tokyo(ie inside the Yamanote line).
There are very crowded areas and areas with few pedestrians.
Parking the Bike will also be a problem.

Bike rental prices really vary from 200yen/day for a mama-chari
http://unknowngenius.com/blog/pix/post1279/mamachari_bike.jpg

To a lot more for things like mountain bikes, etc.
Not sure how tall you are but I found japanese bikes rather on the smallish side and needed to import a frame for my Bike from Korea.

As for other things they are pretty easy to figure out, granted addresses for places work differently here.

HTH.

Zen-Builder
09-13-2007, 07:44 PM
Here is a useful site that I recently found.

http://diddlefinger.com/m/tokyoto/tokyo/

It allows you to look up adresses in english on japanese maps.

Zen-Builder
09-16-2007, 11:28 PM
Be warned:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hIbPgEyOGs4

Otaku, both overseas and local, are regular on TV and often being made fun of.
They even got features on the guy area(Akihabara) vs the girl area (Higashi Ikebukuro).
Would link but they are in japanese.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kQYRnOtDhj8&mode=related&search=
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s0Oot6HUGiY&mode=related&search=

Dr.H
09-17-2007, 12:56 AM
Those Otaku are always fun to watch ;). I think that Otaku has a bit of a different meaning in the U.S. vs Japan. In America it tends to be a bit more mild and mean your just a big fan of the anime related scene while to other people it might mean your crazy about anime, a virgin and live in your parents basement at age 30 lol I'm sure that's a stereotype in most cases. While I believe there is a line anyone can cross in their hobbies or interests, it's different for each person and culture.

:P That second video of the anime filled room was a bit overboard lol.
The first video seems like they were just having good fun.. a bit sad but hey it's what makes them happy right?

Zen-Builder
09-17-2007, 01:08 AM
Very different meaning in Japan the meaning mellowed out but it still is pretty derogatory.
2nd video was pretty typical I thought. :P

m_candy
09-17-2007, 02:02 AM
Man that one girls room is awesome! Not to into the plush but I'm sure her and I would get along lol

The whole reason I would even go is to check out that kind of otaku stuff and if people are going to make fun of me I am fine with that! I just want to have a good time.

Zen-Builder
09-17-2007, 02:07 AM
If you are a smoker, be careful.

Many areas now forbid smoking around stations and shopping areas.
Some areas/wards will charge you a 20.000yen($165) fine for smoking in a restricted area. My area even forbids you to discard a stumpy(sic).

Also most restaurants are now non-smokign during lunch-time and many incl. bars gone totally non-smoking.

Japan has changed a LOT in the last 10yrs. Lots more english signs and easier navigation for foreigners, etc. Transportation has gotten a LOT easier.

Said that still plenty of outdated stereo-types about japan on the net.
Like the soiled panty/porn vending machines, etc.

HTH.

Zen-Builder
09-17-2007, 02:08 AM
Man that one girls room is awesome! Not to into the plush but I'm sure her and I would get along lol

The whole reason I would even go is to check out that kind of otaku stuff and if people are going to make fun of me I am fine with that! I just want to have a good time.

You will I promise you.

m_candy
09-17-2007, 02:56 AM
If you are a smoker, be careful.

Many areas now forbid smoking around stations and shopping areas.
Some areas/wards will charge you a 20.000yen($165) fine for smoking in a restricted area. My area even forbids you to discard a stumpy(sic).

Also most restaurants are now non-smokign during lunch-time and many incl. bars gone totally non-smoking.

Japan has changed a LOT in the last 10yrs. Lots more english signs and easier navigation for foreigners, etc. Transportation has gotten a LOT easier.

Said that still plenty of outdated stereo-types about japan on the net.
Like the soiled panty/porn vending machines, etc.

HTH.

Thats crazy! I don't smoke but I saw a statistic on japanese smokers not too long ago and I thought there was a huge ratio of men that smoke (It could have been an old article though lol) I don't think they were to happy when that happened lol.
It's funny that you mention the soiled panty machine! I was just talking to my girlfriend about how I was planning a trip to tokyo by myself and she gave me this look of terror! She thinks all the guys there are sex craved and mentioned the dirty panty machine. I was like give me a break you can't judge a culture on something as stupid as that... but hell when i tell someone I live in Calgary they all think that I live on a farm and drink straight from the cow (damn you calgary stampede!!!)
Here a little preview of the stampede...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s0imdtRNi1Y&mode=related&search=

Zen-Builder
09-17-2007, 03:05 AM
I was going to post a few vids, but they got removevd from youtube.
Most offices now are non-smoking, so you see a lot of guys standing outside the buildings puffing away.

One was a british series about Kelly Osbourne spending 5 weeks in Japan and working in a variety of jobs(Maid Cafe, Love Hotel, Cosplay event, etc). Age 18 restriction though.
Don't think it was ever shown outside the UK.

Also check for "Tokyo Eye" and other shows on Youtube, those are japanese shows for foreigners(in english).

Like I said the japan I know changed a LOT, since I came here.

HTH.

m_candy
09-17-2007, 12:58 PM
I was going to post a few vids, but they got removevd from youtube.
Most offices now are non-smoking, so you see a lot of guys standing outside the buildings puffing away.

One was a british series about Kelly Osbourne spending 5 weeks in Japan and working in a variety of jobs(Maid Cafe, Love Hotel, Cosplay event, etc). Age 18 restriction though.
Don't think it was ever shown outside the UK.

Also check for "Tokyo Eye" and other shows on Youtube, those are japanese shows for foreigners(in english).

Like I said the japan I know changed a LOT, since I came here.

HTH.

Oh muchmusic was airing kelly osbourne Turning Japanese last season. It was sooo funny when she was doing cosplay and working int the love hotel lol.

m_candy
10-04-2007, 01:57 PM
Hey,
Just thought I would start this up again with a question...
Is there any good places for night life? I want to check out some places with good music but no where to sketchy since I will most likely be by myself.
I have taken everyones advise and am going to stay at kimi ryokan so some where not to far would be nice too.
Thanks guys
Michelle

Zen-Builder
10-05-2007, 08:19 PM
Is there any good places for night life? I want to check out some places with good music but no where to sketchy since I will most likely be by myself.


Sorry, can't really help with nightlife. Too old, only time we go out to a club(life-house) is to see some of ours friends playing. And that is either in Shimokita-zawa or close to home.

Also different locations often are centers for different musics. Lots of smaller pubs and cafe-houses also have life-acts.

Try a forum like Japan Today or Gaijinpot.



I have taken everyones advise and am going to stay at kimi ryokan so some where not to far would be nice too.


I think you will enjoy it there.
The other side of the station is the lifelier one, with tons of department stores, walking street with cinemas(most films are shown in original language), fast food places, etc.

At the end of the street you got a big Tokyu hands store and a bicycle shop close by. Lots of anime stores in the area too.

Further down you got Sunshine City(take the escalator down from Tokyu Hands). Sunshine City is a huge shopping centre with indoor amusement park, aquarium, 60th floor observation terrace, etc.

HTH.

Zen-Builder
10-06-2007, 05:21 PM
Forget one thing.
Grab those little packs of tissues that are handed out outside the stations. Those come in handy when you need to use a public toilet.
Many of which are still japanese style.

Zen-Builder
10-09-2007, 06:40 PM
FYI, after Nov 20th all foreigners will be photographed and fingerprinted when entering Japan.

m_candy
10-10-2007, 12:03 AM
FYI, after Nov 20th all foreigners will be photographed and fingerprinted when entering Japan.

Really! Are they going to do all of that at the airport?
I'm going to feel like a criminal lol
Oh well I guess they have there reasons.
Oh Where is a good place in or around tokyo that has hot springs?

Zen-Builder
10-10-2007, 12:17 AM
Really! Are they going to do all of that at the airport?
I'm going to feel like a criminal lol
Oh well I guess they have there reasons.
Oh Where is a good place in or around tokyo that has hot springs?

Yes, they will do it at the airport.
There are 2 queues one for japanese and one for foreigners.
Not sure how it will affect me and others that live in japan as up to now we been using the japanese queue.

Hot springs in and around tokyo = few.
There are a few onsen(natural hot springs) around in places like shinjuku, etc.
But those are often indoors and high up in a building.
Still a few Sento(public bathing houses) around.

If you want the true onsen/ryokan experience than you will need to get out of tokyo for the day/night.

Hold that thought, there is an onsen close to me but will need to confer with wife-unit for details.

Dr.H
10-10-2007, 07:05 AM
Lol I'm starting to get exited for m_candys trip.
Make sure you have a good memory card in your camera mc ;) I can't wait to see tons of pictures when you get back!!
Do you have a laptop you plan to bring along?

m_candy
10-10-2007, 02:17 PM
Lol I'm starting to get exited for m_candys trip.
Make sure you have a good memory card in your camera mc ;) I can't wait to see tons of pictures when you get back!!
Do you have a laptop you plan to bring along?

I have a laptop but it's really old lol. I can't upload pictures into it. But I am planning to buy a wicked camera before I go so lots of pictures!!!
Now my plans are being messed around with again!!! I asked my boss and I can't get Feb off at all (booooo) so I was like ok for sure end of march.
Then I got together with a bunch of girl friends and one of them is going to be done university as of end of april and is dying to go to tokyo. Seeing as she is one of my only friends that like anime and raw fish I was uber excited. We are going to get together this weekend so I can show her what I have planned so far. If she comes I can go to disney land!!! (Ok, I know that sounds lame but I have been dreaming of Disney land since I was 3 years old)
We can also scope out the bars together.
Oh thanks zen builder for that link to that foreigner forum. There was lots of good information there regarding where to go!

FilmMkr
10-10-2007, 06:13 PM
Looks like I'll be doing Wonder Festival by myself, then. :(

m_candy
10-10-2007, 07:18 PM
BOOO!
You didn't tell me you were going to go for sure filmMkr!!!
This sucks!

FilmMkr
10-10-2007, 08:34 PM
LOLz - its not in stone yet, but I am going to see if I can schedule it. It was too dang hot last time I went for WF Summer, so I thought I'd try it in February.

In all seriousness, though, it depends on our live event schedule - that's the busiest time of year for awards shows and concerts and its usually impossible to get away. If I do go, I'm going to take my DP and our HD camera and shoot the show for my new, um, project. :rolleyes:

m_candy
10-10-2007, 11:03 PM
Oh man if you do make that vid you have to let me see it!
I'm really sad that I can't go to WF I was even going to wait till Aug to go to summer WF but now I am taking a summer course...
I don't like it when life doesn't work on my schedule. Well maybe it will when I am all done with school... sigh

m_candy
12-20-2007, 12:48 PM
Ok... I know I am going to sound like the most random person ever but it's back on!
I have been dealing with alot of crap the past couple of months and have been in a really big slump. So I threw everything out of the window and bought a ticket for Tokyo! I'm going Feb 20- Mar 06. Yes, I know, I'm soo random but thats just how I roll haha.
Anyways I have typed up a rough schedule...

Tokyo Plan



Wed Feb 20/ Thurs Feb 21 - Departure

- Leave for airport at Wed Feb 20 9:30am

- Plane departs for Vancouver at 12:15pm

- Arrive in Vancouver at 12:55pm

- Depart Vancouver at 2:00pm

- Arrive at Narita at 5:30pm

- Check out the tourist area for more information

- Before leaving the airport be sure to buy at least 1 day for the subway (cheaper if you buy it at the airport)

- Take Narita express train (located in the basement of the airport). Be sure to get on the front 3 cars (the other 3 split off later)

- Get off at Ikebukuro station (It should be around 8-9pm Thursday Feb 21)



Fri Feb 22 - Shibuya



- Get up at 9:00 am at the very latest

- Take the JR Yamanote line south to Shibuya station

- Leave from the Hachiko exit (must take picture with dog!)

- Walk down center Gai

- Make sure to check out Sibuya 109, Tokyo, Loft and Spain slope.

- Walk over to Harajuku

- Browse around (don’t go too crazy... coming back soon enough)



Sat Feb 23 – Akihabara



- Stay to the West of the station

- Don’t miss Akihabara Radio Kaikan

- Follow outline on map

- Look for new gadgets!



Sun Feb 24 – WONDERFEST



- Make sure that before this date you buy wonderfest booklet!

- Leave at around 8am (resist temptation to go earlier I’m just going to be stuck in a line anyways)

- Follow directions to Tokyo big site

- Do not buy more then 5 kits! (remember the budget!)

- Find boys!!! (kits that is)

- Afterwards stick around Odaiba

- Check out Palette town







Mon Feb 25 – Yokohama



- Take the JR Shonan line to Yokohama (takes about ½ an hour)

- Meet up with Eathan

- Things to do ... Minato Mirai 21, Yokohama China town, Ramen museum



Tues Feb 26 – Asakusa



- Take JR Train to Ueno station

- Leave from the Asakusa exit

- Follow Asakusa Dori (Ave)

- Go to Asakusa tourist information center.

- Turn on Nakamise Dori

- Keep following until you reach Asakusa Shrine (Don’t forget to buy plenty of souvenirs around here)

- On the way back check out Rox

- If time check out Asahi beer tower (finally some drinking!)



Wed Feb 27 – Pending (maybe Kyoto and Osaka)



Thursday Feb 28 – Pending



Fri Feb 29 – Nakano/ Shinjuku (Buy a JR day pass for this day)



- Take JR Yamanote line to Shinjuku

- Take either Chuo line (rapid service) or Chuo, Sobu line west bound

- Get off at Nakano (not higashi- nakano)

- Take the north exit

- Walk threw Sun mall shopping centre

- Shopping in Nakano Broadway!

- If I buy too much stuff take the train back to the hotel and drop it off

- Go back to Shinjuku

- Head over to Kabukicho at around 6pm

- Don’t stay out later then 11pm



Sat Mar 01 – Roppongi



- From Shinjuku take the oedo subway line to roppongi station

- Go to the Mori Art museum (1500 yen admission)

- Be sure to check out Roppongi hills and Roppongi mid town

- Stick around Roppongi station at night time (suppose to be a really accessible for forigners) Maybe check out a bar or pub.

- Remember curfew is at 1:00 am













Sunday Mar 02 – Harajuku



- Take JR south to Harajuku station

- Follow blue path first (to Meji shrine)

- Go to yoyogi park to check out the cosplay and lolita

- Come back to Shinjuku station

- Follow pink path (Takeshita dori) for shopping



Mon Mar 03 – Spare day (Do whatever)



Tuesday Mar 04 – Ueno



- Follow Frommer’s walking guide



Wednesday Mar 05 – Spare day



Thursday Mar 06 – Home time



- Leave hotel at 9 am

- Take the train to Narita airport

- Get a locker and leave luggage

- Take Keisei Limited express train to Naritasan

- Check out Naritasan Shinshoji Temple

- Be sure to be back at the airport before 2:00

- Plane leaves at 5:00 pm

- Arrives in Calgary at 1:30 pm (same day


Anyways give me some feedback guys! I'm still wondering about going to kyoto and osaka. Am I missing anything I need to do?
Thanks
Michelle

Masa
12-21-2007, 12:21 AM
Sounds like a busy trip :p

It looks like you got things planned out pretty well. The only hitch might be trying to see Osaka and Kyoto in one day. Even if you only hit the major tourist spots, everything is so widely spread out that just getting from point A to B will eat up most of your day - not to mention the 5 hour round trip from Tokyo. It looks really close on those little maps, but it is actually 500km away :D

Since you will be there under "temporary visitor status", I would suggest getting an extended JR pass since you'll be taking lots of trains and subways almost daily (especially if you plan on taking the bullet train anywhere).

February in Japan probably isn't cold by Canada standards... but bring a sweater, or two ::thumb

telemarq
12-21-2007, 02:46 AM
Sounds like fun. I'd love to go for WF, but I'm probably going back later in March and early April for the Tokyo International Anime Fair and another dose of cherry blossoms.

Like Masa says, if you are going to Kyoto and Osaka, get the JR Pass. Round trip on the shinkansen will cost about the same as the pass, but it will save you a lot of travel time. And the shinkansen is the coolest form of mass transit in the WORLD! The pass is good for all the JR railways aound Tokyo. The private lines and subways are not covered, but for Y2000 you can get a Suica card. Its basically Y500 deposit and Y1500 worth of riding. Its like a debit card for transportation, when it gets low you just add more money to it at the machines in the stations. Many of the shops and restaurants in the stations can use it for payment, so you can use the money you put into it before you go back home. Turn it back in and you get your Y500 back, but it makes a nice momento of the trip and you can use it again when you go back to Japan. And you will go back!:D

Asakusa is a long walk from Ueno Station. I'd take the Ginza subway, its only two stops away or about 5 minutes, and I think its only Y160. If you are doing a Frommers or Lonely Planet walking tour of that area, the subway saves some wear and tear on the footsies.

Have a great time! Eat lots of ramen!

m_candy
12-21-2007, 03:09 PM
Thanks alot for the info.
I was actually thinking about staying overnight in Kyoto ( I guess that isn't very clear lol) thats why there are 2 day pending at the same time.
I was planning on still keeping my hotel room in Ikebukuro so I don't have to haul around my luggage.
That pass sounds like a good idea! Do I have to purchase it before I go or can I get it when i am there?
Oh and if I do have 2 days do you think I should try hitting up both Kyoto and Osaka or just one? If one, which one?
Only 2 more months! Hopefully I can survive life before then!
Thanks again
Michelle

telemarq
12-21-2007, 09:58 PM
Good idea keeping your luggage in one spot. You have to get the rail pass before you leave, it is NOT available in Japan. Actually, you buy an exchange order, then when you get to Japan, take that to any JR station (Ikebukuro is one) and there they give you the pass. This (http://www.japanrailpass.net/eng/en001.html) explains it, and here (http://www.jtbusa.com/enhome/jrpasstop.asp) is as good as any place to get it. Don't wait until the last minute to purchase the exchange order. Three weeks before you go is about as late as I'd wait.

I've not spent much time in either city, so time wise it a matter of what you want to see and do. I'm thinking about spending a day in Kyoto if things go according to plan. For an overnight trip, I like to stay at a traditional ryokan. They are more expensive than hotels but worth the experience.

m_candy
12-21-2007, 10:22 PM
Ok, so I was reading threw how to get a Japan rail pass and hit a snag...
It says you can only go to certain travel agencies to get one and Calgary is not on that list. The closest is Vancouver which is almost 3 hours by plane... and you can't order it on the net. Bah! Do you think I should try going to a regular travel agency and see if I could get one threw them?

telemarq
12-21-2007, 11:00 PM
Maybe its different for Canada. Ive always got mine online. You might try emailing or calling them to see if they can help.

A quick Google found this site. They seem to process many nationalities.

http://www.kintetsu.com/jrpass/?gclid=CIi8kcj_upACFRIUagodaij0WQ

m_candy
12-22-2007, 02:13 AM
Thanks a lot telemarq for that link!
This might sound like a stupid question but it completely covers any JR train? I understand sometimes it might cost more for certain ones but it even covers all the JR lines in Tokyo like the Yamanote line? That sure would be convenient so I don't have to keep buying a ticket every time. Man I feel like such a newbie (which I am but still...)

telemarq
12-22-2007, 02:44 AM
What you want is the JR Pass, good on any line in Japan that has the JR logo, including Yamanote! The Nozomi Shinkansen is the exception. There are other passes like the JR Central, JR East, JR Hokkaido, etc., but they are only good for that region. The other private subway and non-JR lines are not covered, so it might be more convenient to pay-as-you-go. I like to use the Suica Card (issued by JR) because its so easy to buzz in and out of the stations, and it makes tranfers between JR, subways and privates lines a breeze. The Pasmo card does the same, and it is issued by the private lines.

You really only need to get the cheaper 2nd Class JR pass, unless you want to ride the bullet train in 1st. What JTBUSA does is accept your request for the exchange order and then emails you with a final price based on the current yen rate and how long you will have to finalize the order. They will FedEx the exchange order to you. I assume Kintetsu will do something similar.

You may feel like a newbie, but you will be amazed at how easy it is to get around that country. You have got the right level of excitement and it will get more intense the closer you get to leaving.

m_candy
12-22-2007, 01:06 PM
Seriously I can't even believe that I am actually going... It still blows my mind.
I get butterflies just thinking about it! but theres no turning back now! The ticket has been bought and the hotel is reserved.
I'm excited for all the pretty Japanese boys... oh and all the culture blah blah lol just kidding
This has been my dream since I was 13! I never thought I would have the balls to go by myself but I'm a big girl! I can take care of myself lol
Hey does anyone know of any festivals going on at that time? I've always wanted to dress up in a kimono and try to win myself a gold fish lol.

fiathriel
02-02-2008, 01:23 PM
You will have so much fun, sadly I'll miss you but not by that long!!! Would have been nice but anyhows, have a lovely time.

Me, I'm looking forward to the onsen, the food, the sake (which I love here but it's not that great) and the people (haha, even though I know they'll ignore me for the most of it but still!!!).

Please tell us all about it and take lots of pics!!! I will too!!

m_candy
02-12-2008, 12:24 AM
No worries I will take plenty of pics and post them!

I have a question...
I have an ipod touch and it works on wi-fi. Are there a lot of areas that have wifi (stores etc) I'm pretty sure they would but it would suck if I couldn't use it when I was out there. Hopefully the charger works there too lol
8 more days!!! Woot!

Masa
02-12-2008, 02:46 AM
Lots of wifi spots in Tokyo so you should be ok :)

Most of the McDonalds and Stabucks in Japan has one, but you have to have a YahooBB (Softbank) account. NTT also has some widespread coverage, but again, you have to pay for their services.

As for the free connections, a lot of cafes, coffee shops, and larger restaurants will have them. You won't get much speed with the freebie services, but it should be enough to check and send email. Here is a list of some locations listed with Freespot (http://www.freespot.com/users/map-e/map_tokyo.html).

There is also the manga/internet cafes where you can get internet on the cheap.

Have fun ::thumb

PetarB
02-18-2008, 11:02 PM
I went to Japan for the first time last year. I spent one day on 'business' and other six days of fun. It was one of the best experiences of my life, and I just know you're going to have a great time! m_candy, if you go to Kyoto, and dress up in a kimono you will fit right in...!

m_candy
02-20-2008, 09:14 AM
Well thanks for all the help guys!
I hope I get the chance to go to Kyoto but I'm not sure if I will have time. I was thinking of staying a little closer to Tokyo (Kamakura ect)
I'll post lots of pics when I return. My plane leaves in 5 hours! Woot.

Dr.H
02-24-2008, 10:19 PM
Good luck, be safe and have a GREAT time!! :)