Best guidebook for Japan

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Jun 23rd, 2002, 10:51 AM
  #1
jenny
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Best guidebook for Japan

Planning a 3 week trip to Japan in Sept. Last visit was 10 years ago when I used the Kodansha book Gateway to Japan which I thought was excellent. Any feedback on today's guidebooks for Japan? Planning to head north of Tokyo for cooler temperatures where I've never been to. Anyone knows Hokkaido?
 
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Jun 23rd, 2002, 03:20 PM
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don buri
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My favorite is Japan Solo, also from Kodansha.

Hokkaido is great, but you might be spending a lot of time in transit as the area is so vast and there's no shinkansen. But since you have 3 weeks that shouldn't be a problem. You'll probably have to take the bus a lot too since rail coverage is not very extensive. Be sure to visit Sounkyo Gorge and Lake Akan.

Hope you save some time for Tohoku (Northern Honshu). Lots of sights to see there, such as Towadako, Oirase river and Toono.

 
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Jun 23rd, 2002, 06:58 PM
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lcuy
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I still like Gateway the best, although it was updated about 2 years ago. Japan Solo is my next favorite. Although it doesn't have nearly as much info on hotels & restaraunts, it is terrific on getting a feel for areas, sights and for walking tours.
Hokkaido is a somewhat differnet experience than the rest of Japan- different culture, and the focus up there is more on natural wonders than history or architecture. I've only gone in the ski season, so never saw much under the piles of snow!
In September, much of Northern honshu and even the mountainous parts of Central Honshu will be pleasant.
 
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Jun 24th, 2002, 04:52 AM
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jenny
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Thanks for the feedback. was surfing Barnes and Nobles and their Gateway Edition was 1996, cf to Frommer's and Fodors 2002. Will check on Japan Solo as well.
 
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