New answers tagged

3

It depends on when and where you stay. Of course, the festive season is more expensive, but not that much more expensive. You can get a reasonably priced hotel on Jan 2nd; I did and it was a nice hotel! If you are staying in Tokyo, then 10,000 JPY per night per room (2 people) seems right. The outskirts of Tokyo, e.g. Yokohama, is a bit cheaper but not too ...


0

If you are going to Japan as your first trip to a foreign country, my guess is you're going to try to do touristy stuff and not try to "have experiences". I'll base my answer on that, and restrict everything else I'm saying to what you can expect to find in large cities. Be aware that if you go to small towns, the following information may not be ...


2

I was in Japan way back in 1975. Zero Japanese. It was not unusual to not know what we were eating, but so long as you don't have must-not-eat things that's not a big deal. Obviously, my memory of that trip isn't too detailed by now. It would be vastly easier to do now. Several years ago we had two overnight stopovers and even with my wife being rather ...


3

It hasn't started yet, but the reconstruction of the main keep of Nagoya Castle in wood is expected to begin soon, so hopefully soon this will be a "castle under construction". The construction work was supposed to begin in 2018, but some disagreements among the Mayor of Nagoya and the government of Japan, as well as protests (the protesters ...


2

I suppose you haven't been able to travel yet, due to COVID. So hope I'm not too late. But for when you eventually make the trip, there's a question to ask. There are no limited express trains on the San'yo Main Line west of Okayama, and you're left with really the local trains (or express trains, which are not really so "express"). Well, in fact, ...


2

"We have never gone anywhere to a foreign country, and the budget is kinda tight" Puerto Rico to Japan is quite a big first step for a first-time traveler with a tight budget. There's Spanish-speaking and English-speaking countries that are much closer (for example in the Caribbean islands) and would be much easier for you on your "tight ...


1

Putting the curent global health pandemic to one side, Japan is an incredible country to explore - but really difficult on a tight budget. You definitely don't need a person to guide you, but some decent guidebooks and tons of research before travelling is essential. (In normal times) Many places where you might want to stay or visit (and the trains that ...


7

My rule of thumb for booking "reasonable" accommodation in Japan is ¥10,000 per night for two. In cities, this is sufficient for a clean if often cramped "business hotel" room for two. In the countryside, this is enough for almost all minshuku (inn/B&B) accommodation, perhaps the lower tiers of ryokan as well if you skip meals/...


5

One thing to be aware of if you do go on your own (I found out the hard way): if you plan on visiting any museums in Japan like the Studio Ghibli museum or the Epson museum, you have to buy your tickets way in advance, just like if you were buying tickets to a play or a concert. If you plan to visit any of the castles (highly recommended!) make sure you ...


4

You can definitely travel in Japan without a guide. Your mileage will depend a lot on where you go. If you stick to the standard tourist track of Tokyo-Kyoto-Oska-Hiroshima, you'll get around easily with just English. Anywhere else, you should be more adventurous, and I strongly recommend learning a few sentences in Japanese, and be comfortable communicating ...


12

@Itai's answer is great, but I just want to note that it does depend on where you go. Japan is not a country where many people can speak English; not that people don't like foreign tourists (surely there's quite a bit of xenophobic sentiment in Japan, but that's not what I'm talking about here), but many people just can't express themselves in English at all,...


1

I speak only Spanish and English, yet I had no problems on my own in Turkey, Taiwan, Korea, Portugal, Italy. More than two weeks in each. And no problems for shorter visits to dozens of other countries. I suspect Japan would be no different. (Actually, the Spanish helped in Italy.) Added as it was posted as a comment: Turkey: Learned how to ask directions ...


20

If by “travel guide” you mean hiring someone to take you to places: this only useful or necessary in areas where it's hard to get around or where there are places you must avoid, and it's only affordable for budget travelers in places where the local currency is weak. Japan has excellent infrastructure and is extremely safe: you don't need a guide. And you ...


44

You can. Travel guides can be helpful in many areas but Japan is so safe that even doing the wrong thing will not get you in trouble. Getting lost might happen from time to time but it's part of the fun. Japan is known for having strict etiquette but they are very forgiving of foreigners and can get the gist by observing others before doing something. What I ...


5

I don't think you have to worry too much as an English speaker with a smartphone, a data plan (not too expensive) and Google Translate. Even without a smartphone translator, plastic food in the window makes it easy to get decent meals (just point). People are generally kind and not likely to lead you astray, sometimes almost helpful to a fault.


20

Yes: the reconstruction of Shuri Castle in Naha, Okinawa, the historical seat of the Ryukyu Kingdom, is under way. Destroyed once during WW2, it was rebuilt but destroyed again in 2019 by a massive fire. Construction started in 2020 and aims to finish by 2026.


5

The restaurant in the series is supposedly set in Shinjuku's Golden Gai, but there doesn't really appear to be anything quite like it there. However, this article (in Japanese) asserts that the actual inspiration was a real kushikatsu (fried stuff in a stick) joint called Yagura Kushikatsu in Tennoji, Osaka: 串カツ専門店 やぐら +81 6-6714-7211 https://maps.app.goo.gl/...


1

Take it from one who first traveled to Japan over 50 years ago and has had good fortune to return many times.. See my photo of Yodo River in Osaka below The area of Shinjuku known as "Golden Gai" has about an 8 block labyrith of small bar/cafe's that in some cases only accomondate 8 to 10 people. Many of which are members only establishments. Other'...


Top 50 recent answers are included