2 week trip Tokyo/Kyoto/Kanazawa

Feb 10th, 2007, 09:00 AM
  #1  
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2 week trip Tokyo/Kyoto/Kanazawa

I am planning a 2 week trip in the first 2 weeks of April with my wife and 3 daughters aged 9, 11 and 12.

We are planning to stay a week in Tokyo, 2 days in a Ryokan in Kyoto, and one or two days in Kanazawa.

If we were to go to one more place where would be recommended?
mslotover is offline  
Feb 10th, 2007, 01:08 PM
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you could spend more time in Kyoto

you could go to Takayama for the spring festival which I think is on the 13th and 14th

you could go to Shirakawago from Kanazawa (and, optionally, on to Takayama), spending a night there or just continuing on.

book in advance.
mrwunrfl is online now  
Feb 10th, 2007, 02:46 PM
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I would spend more time in Kyoto, too. 2 days is not enough imo. 2 nights in Kanazawa is good...I'm partial to it because Kanazawa is where we live. A trip to Shirakawa-go or Gokayama would be a good contrast to cities. Stay in a minshuku one night for a quite special experience.
KimJapan is offline  
Feb 12th, 2007, 04:51 AM
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I agree with mrwrnfl and Kimjapan - I'd almost flip Tokyo and Kyoto.
angethereader is offline  
Feb 13th, 2007, 01:50 PM
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Thanks for this. Any advice where we should stay in Shirakawa-go? I have found the village website but it lists lots of places but no emails - will they speak any English? How can I book, or should we just turn up and see what is available?

Also any accomodation advice in Kanazawa?

Many thanks for your help!

mslotover is offline  
Feb 13th, 2007, 02:11 PM
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You can book a place in S-go through the tourist office...they speak very little English. From within Japan the phone number is 0576 961 751. It will take two calls, one to request, and a call back later (if in Japan they will call you) to tell you where you will be. You could ask at the first hotel you stay at or another tourist info desk if they can help you book.

If I'm not mistaken, someone at Jyuemon may speak English. Yokichi also supposedly has an English speaker and is popular with foreigners, though to me Jyuemon looks nicer (if I'm not confusing it with somewhere else).

In Kanazawa, the Tokyu Excel Hotel in Kohrinbo is in a great location, walking distance to Kenrokuen, samurai district, museums, shopping, restaurants. A bit cheaper with smaller rooms to match but a fabulous bath on the roof is the APA Chuo Hotel...you would need 3 rooms there, maybe two rooms would work in the Tokyu if you use their bigger rooms.

The hotels around the station are not well located except for being near the station and the recently opened shopping center, Forus. From the station, you would need to take a bus or a taxi to every sightseeing spot. If you are inclined to stay near the station anyway, keep in mind that the ANA and Nikko hotels, the two big ones there, do not represent good value at all as they are hugely overpriced for what you get, especially the ANA.

KimJapan is offline  
Feb 13th, 2007, 05:29 PM
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I stayed at the Koemon minshuku and highly recommend it. Otani-san speaks English but his wife does not. Their daughter is a fluent English speaker though I suspect that she has left home.

Koemon is a nice gassho zukuri minshuku only a couple minutes walk from the tourist info center. It is steps away from the footbridge over the river that goes to the outdoor museum village. The rooms are pretty basic, shared bath (if this usually turns you off then you should make an exception this time).

mrwunrfl is online now  
Feb 14th, 2007, 11:19 PM
  #8  
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Thanks for all this.

mrwnrfl, when you say communal baths, what exactly does this mean?
mslotover is offline  
Feb 15th, 2007, 12:20 AM
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In the case of the minshuku in S-go, it means you will share the toilet and bath facilities with the other guests and/or the family that lives in the house. In the case of onsen or sento or public baths, it means that women and men have segregated but communal areas for washing and soaking in tubs. In neither case should you be worried.
KimJapan is offline  
Feb 15th, 2007, 11:06 AM
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Kim's got it. And by bath facilities in the minshuku we mean a shower stall(s). I don't think there was a tub.

If you are in your room then you would step into your slippers that are at the front door, walk down the hall to the bathroom, change into the bathroom slippers, and step into the bathroom.
mrwunrfl is online now  
Feb 15th, 2007, 01:06 PM
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Some of the minshuku have old fashioned wooden soaking tubs. Some have metal. All will have some way to soak or will show you the public bath nearby.
KimJapan is offline  
Feb 16th, 2007, 05:08 AM
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If you want a little more space with the kids, we stayed at a guest house (NOT a ryokan).

It's in the middle of the older part of the city. We loved the area.

For 3 it was 8000 yen per person, and the best part was we had the cottage in the back. So we had several rooms and a nice garden. (this means your own bathroom)

I'd look at some trip reports, there was a family who stayed there last July, and the kids played in the park next to the guest house every day.

Oh, it's called Hirota Guest House. Hirota speaks excellent English.
angethereader is offline  
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