Japan By Rail Guide?

Old Aug 21st, 2009, 07:22 AM
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Japan By Rail Guide?

Looking at the details of the Japan Rail Pass I realize it will not cover Kyoto so I have to figure that into my itinerary as well. Can anyone recommend the Japan By Rail guide or can I get the information just as easily by using the various websites. I feel the need to be booking at least the Kyoto hotels soon but hate to do that without knowing the financial implications of the choice, will the guide make it easier for me now and when we are actually in Japan adn using the system? Sue
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Old Aug 21st, 2009, 09:12 AM
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Hi, Sukie -

You might want to check the Japan Rail Pass information again. I believe it does cover travel to Kyoto, just not the fastest of the fast trains. See http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2361.html for more information.

Hope that helps!
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Old Aug 21st, 2009, 09:16 AM
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'Japan by Rail' book is only of use if you plan to travel by train extensively, with or without rail pass. It will not help you with city transport options for Kyoto. I don't know what you mean by the JR Pass not covering Kyoto. It covers you for journeys to and from Kyoto - the only thing you have to pay separately is for transport within Kyoto and places nearby. Within the city, Kyoto City Bus has extensive network of services and you can buy a day ticket for 500 yen - you start to save from the third ride. Walking is also a good way to get about a particular area, such as Higashiyama, near Ginkaku-ji (Silver Pavillion) and Kinkaku-ji (Golden Pavillion). Even with occasional taxi rides, you won't be spending a fortune on transport. To more outlying areas like Mount Hiei and Kurama, there are private trains, buses and cable cars.
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Old Aug 21st, 2009, 12:46 PM
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The others have it right. The only JR train you won't be able to take with your rail pass will be the nozomi shinkansen. See here for all the details about rail passes and the how to use them or any other rail questions you have:

http://www.japanrail.com/

As Alec mentioned above, when you get to Kyoto you will use the public transportation system to get around. See here for more details;

http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2363.html

http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2015.html



Aloha!
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Old Aug 21st, 2009, 04:00 PM
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The Kansai pass doesn't cover Kyoto, the JR pass definitely does. And the Hikari shinkansen takes only a little longer than the Nozomi so you get no real loss.

And the trains are dead-on schedule. You can set your watch by the shinkansen.
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Old Aug 21st, 2009, 06:24 PM
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I have the Japan By Rail book. I like it for trip planning because it gives you lots of ideas. For example, they recommended an izakaya in Kumamoto that was wonderful!
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Old Aug 21st, 2009, 06:26 PM
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I should have reviewed the post - it's a nice book to have if y but it's best as a supplement and only if you plan to do extensive rail travel.
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Old Aug 21st, 2009, 07:33 PM
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Thanks to all for responding. Sue
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