Arashiyama questions

Old Apr 2nd, 2008, 05:07 PM
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Arashiyama questions

Only 18 more days!!
Thanks to everyone that has provided input regarding our trip. We puchased our rail passes yesterday. I am tweaking a few things here and there. I read recently about the Hozu River Boat Tours from Arashiyama. Has anyone done this? Where do you end up? We will be there in early May. How does this interface with the Sagano Train?

Thanks,
Suzanne
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Old Apr 2nd, 2008, 05:23 PM
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These might help.
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e3912.html
http://www.sagano-kanko.co.jp/eng/index.htm
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Old Apr 2nd, 2008, 11:40 PM
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I'm not sure if these Hozu River Boat Tours are the sort of inflatable boats there that take you down river?
If so when you go to the railway station there is a counter on the left in the station where you can buy boat and train tickets combined so that they interlink.
We didn't do it - we just took the little train along the line and back - it was pleasant enough - but would be lovely at blossom time (we went too early for this so foliage etc wasn't so great). From the train we could see the boats going downt the river.
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Old Apr 3rd, 2008, 01:55 AM
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I've seen both traditional boat (flattish wooden types, probably can accomodate 20-30 people) as well as rubber boat rafting. I have not done this but supposed to take 1-2 hours.

The little train leaves just outside of JR Saga station. The whole ride is about 20min or so, very scenic though I'm not sure if the cherry blossom would still be there in May. You can't use jR pass. Personally I thought the ticket wasn't be best value at JPY600 ONE WAY.

I'm not sure how much time you have in Kyoto but probably won't be on my highest agenda--I'd rather see an additional zen garden but that's my taste.

BTW, I found a shop called RAAK near Gion selling locally-dyed light cotton scarves (JPY1500). They have so many interesting (some traditional, some quite modern) patterns and the material is 100% cotton, gauge-like, so soft and light. It's the best thing I acquired in my latest trip. Check http://www.raak.jp (Japanese only)
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Old Apr 3rd, 2008, 03:32 AM
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Yes, it was the Japan-Guide site that led me to these.

We have a week in Kyoto and I was looking for something to do that might be a little different.

THANKS for the tip on the RAAK shop! Sounds like the perfect gift for folks back home (and me too!).
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Old Apr 3rd, 2008, 08:46 AM
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Hi, jmsvss -

I didn't take the boat, but I did take the little train, and found it enjoyable and scenic. I don't remember seeing blossoms from the train when I was there, which was in May. (There were, of course, all sorts of blooming things in and around Kyoto - just not along this particular stretch of the river.) It was not a highlight of my time in Kyoto, but it was a pleasant change of pace.

Enjoy!
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Old Apr 4th, 2008, 04:08 AM
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Hi,

We did take the boat ride. We were there during the fall season and it was absolutely lovely. Its a longish ride...about 2-2 1/2 hours...if I am not worng...and the boat moves at a slow pace...it can get a lil wearsome after a while...or maybe it was just that I was expecting too much out of it...I remember feeling a wee bit deflated when we got off...

But now when I think of it...and the views that we got...I feel good about it...

If you have time...and can do it...do ahead and do it...if you could hire a kayak and go...that I think would be more interesting...we did see some people doing it...and rued the fact of why we didn't think of it...

Kyoto is lovely...I am sure you will have a great time...
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Old Apr 4th, 2008, 04:10 AM
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From Saga station (JR or tram), make sure you take a LEISURELY stroll amidst the bamboo forests. Don't bother with the rickshaw men. I found the whole experience amazingly tranquil and calming.

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