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Listing in Nara

Banks and exchange: Nara has several banks, as the Dai-ichi Bank, Asahi Bank and Nara Bank of course, on Sanjo-dori, each bank offers foreign exchange services.

Buses: Nara enjoys of a highly developed bus service network connecting the city. The Nara Kotsu bus service is an essential part of the daily life of both residents and visitors to Nara.

Car rental: Eki Rent-a-car (Phone: 0742/26-3929) is close to JR Nara Station, while Toyota Rent-a-car (Phone: 0742/22-0100) and Nippon Rent-a-car (Phone: 0742/24-5701) have departments adjacent to the Kintetsu Station.

Hospital: Nara's principal hospital is the Sakurai Byoin, 2 Imako-cho (Phone: 0742/26-0277), the emergency department attends 24 hours. It is situated on the main road, Tegai-dori, northwest of Todai-ji.

Internet access: Nara City Tourist Information Centre offers a full list of places providing Internet access.

Post offices: Nara's Central Post Office is on Omiya-dori, a fair walk west of centre. It has 24hr mail services, but for other purposes the sub-post offices in the centre of town are more convenient.

Shopping in Nara: Among a range of local crafts, Nara is popular for its calligraphy brushes called Narafude, which are on sale in the special stores located on Sanjo-dori Avenue. However, as these brushes are made with a special kind of animal hair, they are costly and rare, and customers will have to make a explicit request for them. You'll find all these available along the principal shopping streets, or try the Nara Prefectural Commerce, Industry and Tourist Hall, on Omiya-dori to the east of Kintetsu-Nara Station, which stocks the full range of Nara crafts. Nara Sarashi (Nara fabrics) is another traditionally artisanal product of Nara, it is made of boehmeria a special plant.

Taxi: Although there are many taxis ready, the fare can be costly. It is a better alternative to take the bus or to walk to the various sights. But the principal taxi companies are Kintetsu Taxi (Phone: 0742/22-5501), Hattori Taxi (Phone: 0742/22-5521) and Kai-Nara (Phone: 0742/22-3383).

Access: Take the Nara city bus Loop line to the Daibutsuden-mae stop from JR Nara or Kintetsu Nara station. To get to Nara from Kyoto and Osaka, it takes about 40 minutes by train.

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