Kyoto/Osaka Itinerary, pls comment

Old Mar 13th, 2005, 05:48 PM
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Kyoto/Osaka Itinerary, pls comment

I'll be staying 3 days each in Kyoto and Osaka in less than 2 weeks time and would like some comments on my planned itinerary:

Day 1 - arrive Osaka Kansai airport 2.45pm, take bus Limousine to hotel Righa Royal Kyoto. Spend the evening exploring the Gion corner (or a Japanese show) and Pontocho

Day 2 - 10.00am morning tour booked for Imperial Palace. Then visit the Nijo-castle. Then the Kinkakuji and Ryoanji Temples. Return to Shijo-Kawaramachi shopping district for shopping and dinner

Day 3 - Sanjusangendo Hall, Kiyomizu Temple, Heine Shrine, Ginkakuji, Kyoto Handicraft Centre. Any must sees that I've missed?

Day 4 - Morning/Afternoon (depending on whether I've missed some must sees in Kyoto) train to Osaka. Visit Namba for tourist info. Then to Hotel Riva Nankai in Umeda area. If its still early then visit the Universal Studios Osaka

Day 5 - Osaka castle, Sega Amusement Theme Park?

Day 6 - Spa World, anything else?

Day 7 - open, leave Osaka around 3pm for airport for flight back home.

I shall be in Kyoto from 28th to 30th March and Osaka from 31st to 3rd April. Any chance of seeing any sakura blossom? Thanks for any input in advance! = )
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Old Mar 13th, 2005, 10:55 PM
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These sites in Kyoto are not that close. Unless you have a driver and plan to just step inside each of the spots on days 2 and 3, I'd spread them out over days 2, 3 and 4.

If you can't wait to go to Osaka, I'd eliminate a couple of the temples in Kyoto. Ginkakuji and Heine are two I think you could save for your next trip without feeling cheated.
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Old Mar 14th, 2005, 03:59 PM
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Thanks Lcuy.
How many sites shall I be looking at visiting each day without having to rush through things? Originally I thought 3 days in each city would be a balance however looking at things to do in Osaka it seems that there's not much. Or am I not right?
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Old Mar 14th, 2005, 04:41 PM
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You've timed it very well. The Japan Meteorological Agency has forecast the following bloom dates:
March 26 - Kyoto
March 29 - Osaka
March 30 - Nara
http://gojapan.about.com/library/spe...ayosou2005.htm

Those dates were forecast on March 2 and I assume they have been updated.

Japan-guide.com has some later dates:
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2011.html

You are right about Osaka. Have you considered visiting Nara?

Spa World sounds interesting. I read an article that said that it is on two floors, one for men and one for women and that they alternate floors every month. In theory, you could go there on the 31st and visit one floor and then come back the next day to visit the other floor (without having to change genders overnight).
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Old Mar 14th, 2005, 05:13 PM
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Haha that's a great idea! Yeah I read about the Spa World and thought it would be interesting! However is it true that you have to be all naked with all these strangers?? Have anyone been to it and is it worth a visit?
I've read about Nara too however thought that I might not go there since there's just another temple (Todaji?) and from the photos it seemed to me that the temples in Kyoto are even nicer. Or am I wrong?
For Kyoto, is it best to use the bus network to go to these shrines since the subway doesnt go near most of them? Are these easy to use and are there frequent shuttles?
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Old Mar 14th, 2005, 05:48 PM
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The bus does go to most of these, although in Japan, there is always another long walk once you think you're there! You can get an all day bus pass at the news stand in the subway station under Takashimaya Department store or over at the train station.

yes, you will be naked with all the other women. Trust me, they won't let it bother them!

Some people like Osaka. I have never been able to get excited- but maybe I've just never found the good neighborhoods. I did enjoy the giant ferris wheel on top the highrise near the station though!

I'd much rather spend time in kyoto or even Nara. Nara has the temples and the goats at least. I even prefer the shopping in Kyoto, especially along teramachi and in the departments stores of Kyoto.
Is your hotel set, or can you spend extra time in Kyoto?

What ever you do, don't miss wandering under the sakura in either city. It is fun just to watch the other people!
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Old Mar 14th, 2005, 06:20 PM
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Well, Todaiji is not just another temple. You could give up some of the Osaka time for more Kyoto or for Nara. The goats in Nara that lucy referred to are disguised as deer that you can feed by hand. I would visit Osaka-jo if it was famous for cherry blossoms (I think so) and if they were in bloom.
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Old Mar 15th, 2005, 12:02 AM
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Ha--in our family, we've been referring to the animals in Nara as goats so long that I let that slip. They were cute the first 5 minutes, then not so cute after that. I had two of them rip open my bag trying to steal our lunch, and one of them tried to eat my daughters hair bow!
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Old Mar 15th, 2005, 04:36 AM
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Bonjour Lcuy,

I agree, those deers have certainly been interbreeding with goats at some point. One went into my handbag and munched on my railpass once. You should have seen the air of disgust the JR staff would take everytime they had to handle it afterward ...
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