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3 Nights for Tokyo and Kyoto?

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Hi folks,

Coming off a trip to Thailand and will be spending a few days in Japan, trying to figure out an itinerary but I've hit a couple of roadblocks in the planning, any help would be greatly appreciated.

We'll be arriving in Narita at 8:45AM on the 18th of August and flying back from Narita at 5PM on the 21st. Unfortunately, these flights are set in stone so I have no movement there. Here's the itinerary I have in mind so far but it's very open to adjustments, I've never been to Japan (and neither has anyone else in my party of four), so everything right now is simply based off internet research.


Aug 18th Arrive Narita 8:45AM
Train to Kyoto with transfer in Tokyo Station
Arrive Kyoto mid-afternoon
Spend nights of the 18th and 19th in Kyoto (thinking Hyatt Regency)
Early on 19th, train back to Tokyo Station
Check into hotel/drop of luggage (thinking of something near Tokyo Station, Four Seasons perhaps?)
Take metro to Shinjuku
Spend entire day checking out Shinjuku/Harjuku/Shibuya areas
Take metro (from Shibuya most likely) back to Tokyo Station after late dinner
Spend night of the 20th at Four Seasons
Wake up early and spend morning of the 21st checking out the area surrounding hotel (Ginza, maybe Imperial Palace)
Train to Narita around lunch time for 5PM flight.


My gut instantly tells me I'm trying to fit in too much but the only other option seems to be to skip Kyoto entirely which I'd hate to miss out on it. I may not get back to Japan for another decade. We'll be coming off a slow-paced trip to Phuket so a little haste may not be a bad thing.

I also had the thought of 1 night in Kyoto and 2 in Tokyo but that would pack a lot of travelling into that first half of our stay. This would be unwise, right?

I've also thought that staying in the Shinjuku area as oppose to near Tokyo Station may be the better bet. I've read that Shinjuku is the more interesting area to stay but it does it really matter much if we're only in Tokyo one night anyway? Staying at Tokyo Station would seem to be the more efficient choice here, correct?

Thanks in advance for any replies

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