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One week in Japan (Itinerary Finalization)

One week in Japan (Itinerary Finalization)

Oct 8th, 2014, 08:12 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 20
One week in Japan (Itinerary Finalization)

Hi guys!

After much research and revising and, of course, help from people on this site, I finally have my itinerary for my trip the week after next. I'd love to get your input on this (especially regarding Osaka plans), and maybe some suggestions of other things to do. I will be spending 3 full days in Kyoto (near Kyoto Station), 1 full day in Nara (near JR station), and 2 3/4 days in Osaka (near Namba station).

Day 1 - Arashiyama
Togetsukyo Bridge - Tenryuji Temple - Nonomiya Shrine - Arashiyama Bamboo Forest - Gioji Temple - Daikakuji Temple
Day 2 - Higashiyama
Fushimi Inari (very early for good photos) - Kiyomizudera - Ryozen Kannon Temple - Kodaiji Temple - Yasaka Shrine & Maruyama Park - Nishiki Market and Shopping Arcades
Day 3 - Uji
Byodo-in Temple - Taiho-an Tea House (for ceremony) - Crossing the Uji River (Uji Gawa Senjin no Hi, Juusann Juu no Sekitou, etc.) - Uji Shrine - Ujigami Shrine - Mimurotoji Temple - Uji Bridge

Kasuaga Taisha Grand Shrine - Tamukeyama Hachimangu Shrine - Todaiji Temple - Yoshikien Garden - Kofukuji Temple Eastern Golden Hall - Gangoji Temple - Naramachi

Day 1 - Minoo
Minoo Park Trail (Saikoji Temple, Ryuanji Temple, Mino Falls) - Kaiyukan & Tempozan Market Place
Day 2 (OPTION A) - USJ
Day 2 (OPTION B) - All Over Osaka
Kuromon Ichiba - Osaka Castle - Osaka Tenmangu Shrine & Tenjinbashi-suji shopping arcade - Shinsaibashi area (Americamura, Hozenji-Yokocho, Hozenji Temple, Dotombori, etc.)
Day 3 - Umeda & Flight Out
elsewhereist is offline  
Oct 8th, 2014, 08:38 PM
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 21,851
IMO, that sounds like a LOT of time for Osaka, in comparison to your time in Kyoto and Nara, but you must have your reasons.

While in Uji, you might want to visit the Byodo-in Treasure Hall.

And while in Nara, note that the Kofukuji Treasure Hall has some of the most expressive statues I saw anywhere in Japan -- incredibly moving!

I was glad I stopped for tea at the Okochi Sanso Villa, just above the bamboo forest in Arashiyama.

kja is offline  
Oct 8th, 2014, 09:10 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 20
Hi kja! Thanks for the info re the treasure halls. Will definitely stop by the two you mentioned. The Okochi Sanso Villa fee seems pretty street, but I will see if I can fit that in the day's budget.

As for the time in Osaka, my companions all want to go to USJ so they wanted one extra day in Osaka for everything else in the city. I'm not especially interested in USJ as I've been to three other Universal Studios in other countries, but as my companions are all going, I'm also considering it (though I'm fine to spend the day alone elsewhere). Would you have any suggestions on this matter?

Thanks again for your input
elsewhereist is offline  
Oct 8th, 2014, 09:21 PM
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 21,851
"I'm fine to spend the day alone elsewhere ... Would you have any suggestions on this matter?"

Back to Kyoto for Nijojo or Ryoanji or the northern part of Higashiyama?
Ikaruga (outside Nara) or Horyuji and Chuguji?
Ohara for Sanzen-in?

SO many options!!!
kja is offline  
Oct 8th, 2014, 09:26 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 20
I would really love to but taking the train that many times is too expensive for my limited. I'm more or less confined to Osaka City or at least nearby outskirts, like Minoo. I've more or less been choosing between USJ or the rest of Osaka.
elsewhereist is offline  
Oct 12th, 2014, 07:30 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 9,133
Since you have wisely confined yourself to just Kyoto-Nara-Osaka, you will quickly be able to make adjustments 'on the ground.'

It is only about 1200 yen round trip osaka-kyoto on the ordinary (i.e non-shinkansen trains). So kja's idea of going back to kyoto on your own to sightsee more there is not wholly implausible. Especially given that you will have already forked out for airfare and other costs, just so that you could sightsee. It is certainly less expensive to go to Kyoto than to go to USJ, for which a ticket runs 6400 yen!
Sue_xx_yy is online now  
Oct 12th, 2014, 09:44 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 20
Hi Sue_xx_yy! I am considering returning to Kyoto, especially since I might not see the Northern parts of the city. But you're right - with this general plan (Kansai only), it's easier to make decisions on the fly. Thanks for your advice too!

BTW, definitely not going to USJ anymore. It's Minoo Park for me then
elsewhereist is offline  
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