Tokyo daytrip

Old Feb 25th, 2017, 12:37 PM
  #1  
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Tokyo daytrip

I will have one extra day in Kyoto and would like advice whether to travel to Nara or Hiroshima, cities which I will not see otherwise. Thanks.
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Old Feb 25th, 2017, 01:00 PM
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From Kyoto, Nara is closer than Hiroshima and very much worth a visit. I hope you are not thinking about visiting either of these or Kyoto from Tokyo, as it would not make sense.
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Old Feb 25th, 2017, 03:30 PM
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kja
 
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I agree that each makes much more sense from Kyoto than Tokyo!

Your call, as they are completely different experiences. Nara is more like Kyoto, but older and more walkable than Kyoto. Hiroshima offers the incredible emotional experiences of the A-Bomb Dome, Peace Park, and Peace Museum. Both are worthy.
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Old Feb 26th, 2017, 12:12 AM
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Your thread title says Tokyo and your post says Kyoto - which is it?

As TP and Kja have said, you can do either Hiroshima or Nara easily from Kyoto but not from Tokyo.

Common day trips from Tokyo include Nikko, Kamakura and even Hakone.
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Old Feb 26th, 2017, 09:49 AM
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From Kyoto, the Hiroshima day trip will cost 4+ hours and 22,000 JPY.
The Nara day trip will be under 2 hours and less than 1,500 yen.

The extra travel time to/from Hiroshima could be very well worth it depending on your interests.
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Old Feb 26th, 2017, 12:30 PM
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So sorry for the confusion! I have extra time in both Tokyo and Kyoto but was really more concerned about how to spend the free day in Kyoto. Our tour company, Tauck, dropped Hiroshima from their 2017 tour and we were told it was because many people preferred to spend more time elsewhere. They gave the impression that many people did not enjoy the visit to Hiroshima but I can't imagine not traveling there while in Japan. I wanted opinions of people who have either travelled to both Nara and Hiroshima, or know the country well. Your input helps.

So, Tokyo! We arrive in the evening then have 2 full days and one day until 6:30p before our tour begins. The tour begins with a half-day city tour, lunch (sushi making), and a trip to Edo. At the end of the trip we return to Tokyo for a visit to Meiji Shrine with a performance of Shinto music and Kagura dancing.

With all those days in Tokyo, I thought we'd go to Nikko or Kamakura for a day - we will be spending two full days and two nights in Hakone.

I may employ a guide when we get there early to help orient us (maybe a little lesson in public transportation!) but would love to hear from anyone who feels there are sites, restaurants, day-trips while in Tokyo that should not be missed.

Thanks all.
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Old Feb 26th, 2017, 01:24 PM
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Depending on your interests you may find plenty to keep you busy in Tokyo if you decide to stay in the city. Some ideas:

1. Check out Hama Rikyu Gardens and then take a ferry ride upriver to Asakusa and wander around the precinct of Senso-ji (Buddhist temple).
2. You could go to Ueno and visit the Tokyo National Museum if that interests you; the area is also good to walk and wander.
3. If the weather is nice visit the Imperial Palace East Gardens near Tokyo Station (if you only have time for one garden, Hama Rikyu is smaller but more visually pleasing IMO).

By the way, note that Edo is not another city but the old name for Tokyo. By Edo I assume you mean the Edo-Tokyo Museum, which does an excellent job telling the history of the city.
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Old Feb 26th, 2017, 03:42 PM
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>>I can't imagine not traveling there while in Japan

There's your answer.
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Old Feb 26th, 2017, 03:57 PM
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Yes indeed, sounds like you found your answer!

Many people visit Nikko as a day trip from Tokyo. I was glad to spend a night there, as it gave me enough time to see Kegon-no-Taki and a bit of Lake Chuzenji, and to walk a bit of the Kanmangafuchi Abyss.

Kamakura is also worth considering.

Guides are not necessary, but if you want to use one, you might consider taking advantage of an occasional local “goodwill guide” – The Japanese National Tourism Organization coordinates free "volunteer guides who are knowledgeable and happy to guide you in return for practicing their English – which can be excellent!
www.jnto.go.jp/eng/arrange/trav…
You pay any entrance fees and his/her meal if your time with the guide includes one. Do NOT tip him or her (or anyone else in Japan.)
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Old Feb 26th, 2017, 10:42 PM
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Visiting Hiroshima isn't about "joy" but about paying one's respects, understanding more about a moment of sheer horror and the many many many years of aftermath, of appreciating the peace that is to be found there now... it's deeply emotional and as others have said, you have your answer in your own response to the idea of missing it out.

Some travellers are more shallow in what kind of experiences they are looking for when they travel, and that's OK if it's their preference.

But don't let it impact yours, follow your instincts.
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Old Feb 27th, 2017, 10:47 AM
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I visited Hiroshima on my first trip (one overnight as I recall) and will visit Nara (2 nights) on my trip next month. As Kavey mentioned, Hiroshima is not about enjoyment but rather, appreciating a watershed moment in history. I loved the Peace Memorial Museum and thought it pretty fairly presented both views-Japan as aggressor and as victim. Note that 1/2 of the museum is currently closed for renovation, so to the extent that that influences your decision, FYI. The A-Bomb Dome is also a very moving sight, particularly at dusk, although of course, there is nothing to visit-only view.

Like others have said, if you can't imagine not visiting Hiroshima, then that is your answer. And depending on how long of a day you are willing to make it, and the train/boat schedules, you might be able to take the very first train out of Kyoto, finish up the Peace Museum and A-Bomb Dome by, say 1:00, and catch a ferry over to Miyajima for a few hours visit, before returning in time to catch the last train out of Hiroshima. Better if you can spend the night on Miyajima but if not, something to consider.
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Old Feb 28th, 2017, 12:31 PM
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Tripplanner001 - Great suggestions for time in Tokyo - Thank you.

kja - I appreciate the info on the goodwill guides. I had been given contact: www.toursbylocals.com but it is a paid service. The reminder about not tipping is also appreciated.

MinnBeef - Your idea to combine Hiroshima and Miyajima is brilliant. I will research that to see if it is doable. If half of the museum in Hiroshima is being renovated, it's a possibility.
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Old Feb 28th, 2017, 04:25 PM
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If you have time for an overnight, then I agree that you should consider pairing Hiroshima with Miyajima. If you reach Hiroshima by 11 or 11:30 a.m., you should have time to visit the A-Bomb Dome, Peace Park, and Peace Museum and still get a ferry to Miyajima in time for dinner at a ryokan. Miyajima is delightful, especially so after day-trippers leave. You could then visit Miyajima the next morning before heading back to Kyoto or....
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Old Mar 1st, 2017, 09:19 AM
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>> If half of the museum in Hiroshima is being renovated, it's a possibility.

According to the museum website: "The exhibition rooms of the Museum's East Building are closed for renovations until March 2017."

It is now March 2017, so the renovated East Building may be opening soon.
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Old Mar 1st, 2017, 09:21 AM
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and, still, "it's a possibility" and a good idea.
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Old Mar 31st, 2017, 07:27 AM
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I agree! Thanks again.
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Old Apr 3rd, 2017, 08:46 PM
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Some travellers are more shallow in what kind of experiences they are looking for when they travel, and that's OK if it's their preference.

I don't know quite how to respond to this. I don't mean to call you out, as I think statement is more careless than mean, but I have to say something.

I have been to Hiroshima, to Dachau, the WTC, Tuol Sleng and to other, lesser known spots of terrible killings, because, to me it is important to witness.

But I had a family member who survived Nagasaki as a child, and know others who were victims of similar horrors.

There are many people who can get very disturbed by these examples of man's awful inhumanity. Sometimes it just hits too close to home for a person to want to include a pilgrimage of this sort on a vacation. For these reasons, and many others, I would hesitate to call a visitor's choice to exclude this type of tourism 'shallow'.
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Old Apr 4th, 2017, 10:43 PM
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Lcuy

The family members you mention clearly don't fall into my description do they, that they are more shallow in what kind of experiences they are looking for. Rather, for them, they may well appreciate deeper experiences but in this instance, they have personal experiences that mean it's too painful for them to do so.

I think you jumped to a conclusion that I was suggesting that EVERY traveller who doesn't go to Hiroshima is shallow, that's not at all what I said. I said "some" travellers seek a more shallow type of holiday, I know many dearly and don't disparage them for it, it's simply that they want different things from a holiday.
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Old Apr 5th, 2017, 02:40 PM
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Kavey, I didn't mean you were wrong in suggesting different strokes for different folks. I agree.

I just think the word "shallow" might be a bit insulting to use in this context.

There are lots of visitors who choose to focus (deeply even) on traditional or more modern culture, art, dining, architecture, etc. vs a specific tragic event.

After all, we've seen enough of those inappropriate/ comedic selfies done by tourists at tragedy sites, to know choosing a destination is not a reliable method of indicating a traveller's depth.
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Old Apr 5th, 2017, 05:21 PM
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kja
 
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@ lcuy: I would like to thank you for your powerful and poignant reminders that we each have different perspectives and that language can carry inadvertent meanings. Thank you for speaking up, for sharing your perspective, and for your willingness to be a witness.
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