Guidebook for Tokyo?

Old Oct 27th, 2004, 02:36 PM
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Guidebook for Tokyo?

I will be traveling to Tokyo 12/26 - 1/2. I'm going for my birthday and New Years and will be traveling solo. I have my tickets booked, but haven't selected a hotel yet.

Any recommendations for a good guidebook?
(I used Rick Steve's for Rome and really liked the extra info, accurate directions and maps that it contained)
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Old Oct 27th, 2004, 02:52 PM
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lonely planet japan is wonderful. i cruised all over japan last spring by myself and tried out a couple other guide books but found lonely planet the most insightful and interesting. they provided the best suggestions for walking tours, site seeing, restaurants, etc. considering you will be in japan for almost a week, i am guess you will take some day excursions to nara, kyoto, himeji, etc., which is why i suggest purchasing the "japan" version...
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Old Oct 27th, 2004, 05:28 PM
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Time Out Tokyo (in bookstores, Amazon, or their own website www.timeout.com) It is full of more "hip" information. It was a great resource for our trip two years ago. Also, the website has current events information and links to other sights. Also, as a Rick Steves fan, believe it or not he has "Asia Through the Back Door" book similar to his "Europe Through the Back Door" book. The most recent edition I found was 1995 which makes it no so good for specific hotels or restaurants, but if you like his style of traveling, there is a chapter on Japan and Tokyo, and it is a great resource. Have fun planning!
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Old Oct 27th, 2004, 05:49 PM
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Personally, I think the Lonely Planet Japan is not so good. As someone who lives in Japan, I would say you could get a much better guidebook.

The best overall would have to be the Gateway to Japan book. Lots of detailed information and very comprehensive.

For Tokyo in particular, I strongly second the vote for Time Out Tokyo. Lots of good stuff in it. If you'll only be in Tokyo, then this is the book to get.

There are lots of hip websites for events and restaurants in Tokyo. What are you most interested in? I can try to give you some leads.
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Old Oct 27th, 2004, 06:53 PM
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I couldn't find one guidebook that did it all so we used Time Out, Fommers (up to date and quite useful!) and Little Adventures in Tokyo. Also did a search on travelandleisure.com for up to the minute info (found the Prada store this way- a must to see if you're interested in modern architecture).
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Old Oct 28th, 2004, 05:25 AM
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I second "Little Adventures in Tokyo" it was great for sightseeing.
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Old Nov 29th, 2004, 10:11 PM
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i found frommers to be quite good and concise, especially for a short trip to tokyo. they have all the highlights. Little Planet is fine, but i think better for second timers. Little Adventures is a hoot and a great guide to boot. We really loved the Minka-en in Kawasaki (1/2day trip) for a near gaijin-free experience. If you are a hipster, you might like www.tokyoq.com : q = qool. great restuarant and off beat neighborhood info.
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Old Nov 30th, 2004, 06:11 AM
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Just a word of advice. If you intend to do any sightseeing, visits to museums etc, get it done before 29 December, when the whole of Japan go into an end-of-year-and-new-year holiday. Virtually all museums and other tourist sights will be closed. Also shops tend to close early on 31st and reopen on 4th, except department stores and some big retailers opening on 2nd. Restaurants tend to close as well (esp the better ones), but there will always be something open (e.g. noodle shops, fast food, those at stations/dept stores). But you can join the miliions on New Year's Eve and NY's Day on first visit to a Shinto shrine (Meiji-shrine especially).
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