Japan travel guide




Japan Travel Guide

Getting There

Getting to Japan by Air

Practically all international visitors arrive at Narita Airport, which is approximately 40 miles east of central Tokyo. There exists an ample variety of ways to get to and from Narita, and inversely to what some travel agents will communicate you, you do not need a reservation for most of them.

Maybe you want to rent a car at Narita and go into Tokyo. One advice: Don't do it.

If you wish to take a taxi, be well-advised that the tariff will be more than 25 000, and this may really be the slowest way to go.

The JR Narita Express train operates routes to Tokyo, Shinjuku, Ikebukuro, and Yokohama stations. It's the quickest way to arrive to town, taking almost an hour, and it also the tariff is 3,000. You should take a reservation for this train, particularly if you wish to take if from Tokyo to Narita.

The Keisei limited express train is the least expensive option, running to Ueno station around 70 minutes for 1,000. Keisei also works a more plush Skyliner train that's 15 minutes faster to Ueno for twice the price.

If your hotel can offer limousine bus service, this will be the most appropriate option, especially if you have much baggage. Buses take approximately 90 minutes and the tariff is 3,000. Verify with the limousine bus ticket counter in the Narita arrival lobby to see if your hotel is on the route.

When you are leaving via Narita, it's very important to check in at the Tokyo City Air Terminal. Also, you can watch your bags and go through immigration and customs, so there's no need to wait in line at Narita. The bus from the terminal to Narita costs only a few thousand yen and takes about an hour (since you're already checked in, it's a relaxing hour). You must check in earlier at TCAT, and not every airline offers this service, so call your airline's Tokyo office beforehand.

Getting to Japan by Car

Almost all travelers are disheartened from driving in Japan if the environment isn't familiar or they don't understand the language. Practically all road signs are written entirely in Japanese characters and there are some traffic signs in English, or even Japanese written in Roman letters. Besides, traffic in Tokyo is usually very congested and drives on the left, which may be tricky for some to master.

Getting to Japan by Bus

Tokyo possesses a wide bus system, but it's not functional for tourists as the drivers don't speak English and all the stop names are in Japanese. Besides, the buses get stopped in the middle of the traffic unlike trains and subway. If you wish to take a bus for some motive, such as to reach a distant factory or office building, get very detailed instructions from your contact and be sure to tell the driver the name of your stop.

Getting to Japan by Rail

The interesting transport way like the Shinkansen bullet trains cross the country, it is connecting Tokyo with most Japan's main cities. This system is fast, efficient, maybe it is a little expensive way to travel in Japan. Travellers arrive at Tokyo Station (note that some of the Tohoku and Joetsu Shinkansen lines terminate at Ueno Station).

Tokyo Station is well linked to the rest of the city via JR commuter trains and the huge subway system. More assistance or information on Tokyo can be obtained by contacting the Tokyo Tourist Information Center (dubbed "Tokyo i") on the first floor of the the Tokyo International Forum. It is situated a block away from Tokyo Station at 3-5-1 Marunouchi.

The Information Bureau of Tokyo (run by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government) is another information source for foreign people at Tokyo. It is situated in Tokyo Station in the JR View Plaza, near the Yaesu Central Exit (available on Monday through Saturday 9am to 6pm; closed Sunday and holidays).

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