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How to access to Himeji and Kobe from Osaka

There are lots of castles in Japan. But Himeji castle is one of four existing original catle buildings. (C) JNTO

There are lots of castles in Japan. But Himeji castle is one of four existing original catle buildings. (C) JNTO

Himeji castle is National Treasure, National Heritage Building, one of the best 100 castles in Japan and UNESCO World Heritage Site. I think this castle is most well known and popular castle in Japan and I believe everybody agree with me.

Under restoration work, Himeji castle was covered. But now it was removed and the exterior can be seen. (C) JNTO

Under restoration work, Himeji castle was covered. But now it was removed and the exterior can be seen. (C) JNTO

Himeji castle is still under restoration work. But in this past June, whole part of exterior was unveiled. Now Himeji castle is so white! The following link is Kobe Newspaper in Japanese. But you can see two different photos, before and after.

Kobe Newspaper, Himeji castle is too white!?

All restoration work will be completed in March 27, 2015. But if you want to see “White” Himeji castle, now it is time to go.

In this post, I would like to explain about access to Himeji by several kinds of trains. Since Kobe is located on the way to Himeji, I also mention about Kobe. You can drop by when you go to Himeji easily. Read More

How to access to Nikko from Tokyo. There are three ways from Tokyo, Shinjuku and Asakusa.

Nikko is one of the popular destinations from Tokyo. You can visit there as day trip. Of course if you stay there, you can visit many places in outside of Nikko city and also can enjoy hot springs in Kinugawa Onsen too.
I have written about access to Nikko by JR Pass before. At that time, …

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How to access to the newest World Heritage Tomioka Silk Mill

“The Tomioka Silk Mill and Related Industrial Heritage” is the newest World Heritage in Japan. It is listed in this year, 2014. It is not very well known for overseas tourist. Please refer the official site of Tomioka Silk Mill to learn more about this site.
There are several sites in this World Heritage. Most …

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Takasaki station guide. It’s junction to Nagano, Niigata, Kusatsu and Tomioka Silk Mill.

Takasaki station is the biggest station in Gumma pref where is located in northern Kanto region. But it is very easy to find the way in this station because it is not like major station in Tokyo. This station is the junction point to Kusatsu, Minakami, Nagano and Niigata. You may need to transfer at …

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The list of deals for access to downtown Tokyo from Narita airport

It you use JR Pass, JR East Pass or Kanto Area Pass right after you arrive in Narita, you don’t need to purchase any more deals or passes. But some of you stay in Tokyo for the first several days and activate JR Pass or other deals. In this case, you might think about additional …

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Alternatives of Overnight train Twilight Express, in case that you cannot make a reservation.

***Twilight Express will be discontinued in March, 2015.***

Twilight Express is very popular. Many tourists might think about taking this luxury overnight train. But you have a problem. Twilight Express cannot be reserved online. The only way to reserve it from outside of Japan is calling Odekake net 078-341-7903 in Japanese and you have to pick …

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Overnight Express Train Twilight Express, most popular overnight train between Osaka and Sapporo

***Twilight Express will be discontinued in March, 2015.***

Twilight Express is operated between Osaka and Sapporo. This is the longest service operation train in Japan. It takes more than 22 hours to reach Sapporo from Osaka. (If you take other way, it takes 22 hours 45 minutes.)
When you use a berth or a bedroom, Japan …

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Save time and money to go to Niigata from Tokyo by train. Overnight rapid train Moonlight Echigo

***This train usually runs in peak periods. But in this summer peak season, this train will not run. It seems that this train service is discontinued.***

Moonlight Echigo (ムーンライトえちご) is the overnight rapid service train that is operated between Shinjuku (新宿) and Niigata (新潟). This train used to be a scheduled train. But it was changed …

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Mt. Fuji Round Trip Ticket is back in 2014. Perfect choice for just trip to Fuji san!

This deal, Mt. Fuji Round Trip Ticket was on sale in 2013 during summer season only. Now this deal has just been back in 2014 season. If you have a plan to Mt. Fuji and other place, like Nikko or Kusatsu, Kanto Area Pass is better chocie. But if you need a deal for trip …

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Tokyo Metropolitan District Pass (Tokyo Tokunai Pass), good choice for sightseeing in Tokyo.

When you explore in Tokyo, which pass do you use? I think the first choice is Tokyo Metro 1-Day Open Ticket (710 yen) or Common One-day Ticket for Tokyo Metro & Toei Subway (1000 yen). These passes cover most of places in downtown Tokyo. Only Tokyo Disney Land / Disney Sea and Odaiba are not …

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Shinagawa station guide. Transfer among Shinkansen, Keihin Kyuko to Haneda, Narita Express

Shinagawa is one of the terminal station in Tokyo. It is the transfer point of Tokaido Shinkansen (Nagoya, Kyoto, Shin-Osaka), Keihin Kyuko (Haneda airport), Narita Express (Narita airport), Yamanote line (Shinjuku, Shibuya, Tokyo) and many more lines.
There are many railway lines and it seems to make you be overwhelmed. But this is not very …

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Schedule of 2014 summer seasonal trains of Japan Railways

Summer is not the best season to visit Japan except Hokkaido because of climate. It is very hot and humid. But local demand is quite high. Especially Obon season is one of three busiest period in Japan. Obon period is usually from August 13 to 16. In this year 2014, August 17 is Sunday. So …

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Odawara station guide. How to transfer to the train to Hakone.

Odawara is the gateway to the one of most well known Onsen resort, Hakone. If you take JR trains, you have to change the trains to Hakone at this station, Odawara. Odawara station is not a mega terminal station. But there is JR Tokaido line, Shinkansen and Odakyu/Hakone Tozan Railway. It may make you be …

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Utsunomiya station guide. How to transfer to Nikko train.

Utsunomiya station is the station to transfer to Nikko line. If you use JR Pass to get Nikko, you take Tohoku Shinkansen from Tokyo and transfer here at Utsunomiya. Utsunomiya is the major terminal station in Tochigi prefecture. Even though Utsunomiya station is not a mega size terminal, if you are the first time traveller, …

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Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 13, Hakone to Shinjuku

This post is continued from the previous post, Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 12, Takasaki to Hakone via Odawara.
I had to go back to Tokyo by noon. I did not have enough time to visit all places in Hakone. I supposed to go to Sounzan from Hakone-Yumoto by Hakone …

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Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 12, Takasaki to Hakone via Odawara

This post is continued from the previous post, Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 11, Nikko to Ashio and Watarase Keikoku Railway.
I took Ryomo line from Kiryu station where was the transfer point from Watarase Railway. And I arrived at Takasaki station.

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Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 11, Nikko to Ashio and Watarase Keikoku Railway

This post is continued from the previous post, Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 10, sightseeing in Nikko.
I caught the bus at JR Nikko station. There are several bus stops. My bus stopped at “1B” where is located at left side from JR Nikko station.

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Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 10, sightseeing in Nikko

This post is continued from the previous post, Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 9, Yunokami Onsen to Nikko.
In Tobu Nikko station, it was very crowded. It was very beautiful day just after snowy day. The scenery was gorgeous and lots of tourists came over there. Tourist information center in …

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Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 9, Yunokami Onsen to Nikko

This post is continued from the previous post, Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 8, winter festival in Ouchi-juku.
After visiting Ouchi-juku last night, I enjoyed the Onsen bath and had a good sleep. Before I leave, I enjoyed Japanese breakfast. I don’t usually have a big breakfast. But whenever I …

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Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 8, winter festival in Ouchi-juku

This post is continued from the previous post, Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 7, staying in Yunokami Onsen.
Ouchi-juku is one of many post-town throughout Japan. This town is not very well known for overseas travellers. But it is the National heritage site. There are lots of heritage building and …

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Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 7, staying in Yunokami Onsen

This post is continued from the previous post, Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 6, sightseeing in Aizu Wakamatsu.
After 40 minutes train ride, I arrived in Yunokami Onsen station.

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Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 6, sightseeing in Aizu Wakamatsu

This post is continued from the previous post, Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 5, Ashinomaki Onsen to Aizu Wakamatsu.
I had about 3 hours in Aizu Wakamatsu. I visited Tsuruga-jo castle and Nanukamachi station.

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Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 5, Ashinomaki Onsen to Aizu Wakamatsu

This post is continued from the previous post, Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 4, Kinugawa Onsen to Ashinomaki Onsen.
I got off Aizu Railway’s train at Ashinomaki Onsen. But I did not intend to take a Onsen bath here. The reason why I got off was very popular Ramen noodle …

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Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 4, Kinugawa Onsen to Ashinomaki Onsen

This post is continued from the previous post, Trip to Aizu, Nikko and Hakone in 2014 winter – Part 3, Tokyo to Kinugawa Onsen via Utsunomiya.
I transferred at Kinugawa Onsen station from Tobu Railway to Aizu Railway’s rapid trian “Aizu Mount Express”. Before I pen about this train, I want to explain about Aizu Railway. …

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Perfect size case for Japan Rail Pass at only 100 yen!

If you are a first time visitor, you don’t know how big is Japan Rail Pass (a.k.a. JR Pass). Actually it’s not handy size. I had an experience that I almost lost it! One of my reader, Tak gave me a very useful information. He found the perfect size case at 100 yen in Japan. …

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