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Around and outside Tokyo - itinerary 2019/5/8 14:18
My family is flying to Tokyo in June. Arriving in Haneda 10am and departing from Narita 6pm. 10 days. This is my 2nd trip to Tokyo and my 13 year-old's 1st. We like sightseeing, mild adventure activities, Japanese food and a bit of the city. We would like to visit Hakone, Matsumoto, Karuizawa, Nikko, Ghibli Museum, Disney Sea and Mother Farm. Could you please help me with the travel itinerary, i.e. the sequence of places to visit (taking into account transportation) and also where I should stay. Should I stay in Tokyo near a main station and keep making day trips, or would it make more sense to move around with our luggage?
by qfam  

Re: Around and outside Tokyo - itinerary 2019/5/8 21:47

Depending on your dates in June if you don't have tickets already for the Ghibli Museum you might just be out of luck.

You will have to see if the Lawson tickets are still available since the JTB ones are likely long gone. Assuming you are out of luck with Lawson's and desperate to go, you can pay to do this tour which guarantees admission: I have not personally done this tour. I will never do that tour. But if this is something you MUST do, then that might be the only option.

This is the Tokyo Disney Crowd Calendar:

You want to pick a light blue or light green day. Light blue is better. Do not go on an orange day or yellow.

I don't know what Mother Farm is. I think you might have a tough time fitting that all in within 10 days if you want to see some of Tokyo as well.

Good luck!

by rkold rate this post as useful

Re: Around and outside Tokyo - itinerary 2019/5/9 17:52
Many thanks for your advice, rkold. You're right that I don't have enough time. I will drop Hakone from my itinerary and can also drop Mother Farm if there isn't enough time.

I'm thinking of going to Ghibli Museum on 19 June. The online sale for June tickets start on 10 May, I thought. Isn't that what the website says?

I probably only want to spend a day or two in Tokyo, e.g. Shibuya/Shinjuku area.

I like the pictures on the Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route. especially Tateyama Snow Corridor and Murodo. Would you be able to please suggest an itinerary? Where can I find more information on how to travel to the Snow Corridor and Murodo?
by qfam rate this post as useful

Re: Around and outside Tokyo - itinerary 2019/5/9 22:03
Yeah it looks like they go on sale May 10th, I personally never used the website to get my tickets. I went once in 2002 via JTB and last July I asked my hotel concierge to buy tickets for me and they did the leg work. I do know people aren't always aware of the fact you need to get tickets in advance.

The plus of having my hotel get me tickets was my daughter's ticket was considerably cheaper. It's like.. I've looked at Klook to get tickets for TDR but they don't sell child tickets, so it's cheaper to get them at a Disney Store in Japan. Though my upcoming trip, I'm going to get them at my hotel. I'm doing one night on property.

BTW I thought you were going to Osaka and USJ? I think you really need to pin down an itinerary, your trip is really soon and you seem to make

If you want to do the Alpine Route you need time and money. You have limited time, and I've no idea about your budget for this trip. I personally have never done the Alpine Route and have no interest in it because I see plenty of snow every Winter where I live. The snow corridor closes June 22nd, so you would need to go early in your trip.

In terms of luggage, a lot depends on how much you bring and what you are willing to spend. Tokyo Station has a paid luggage storage facility where you could leave larger suitcases while traveling outside Tokyo a few days with a smaller sized bag. Some luxury hotels will also hold suitcases if you travel around a bit, Tokyo Station Hotel offered to do so for me. I don't know if 4 Star hotels will do so. You can also use takyuubin. It's a paid service that I've used for years. It forwards on your bags from one hotel to another. So for example for my trip I will takyuubin: Kyoto to Sakurai, Sakurai to Tokyo, and then possibly within Tokyo, I'm still deciding. Takyuubin bags will arrive from sometime the next day to up to 5 days if you request it. So when I check out of Sakurai, I'm going to Tokyo Disney first with just an overnight bag. My actual suitcase will go to my main hotel in Tokyo and wait for me to arrive the following evening post TDR.

If you're going to Matsumoto, it would make sense to overnight there and in the morning head to Shinano-Omachi. From there you would take a bus to Ogizawa and start the route. You would end in Toyama, where you could either spend the night or take a shinkansen back to Tokyo. At this point, you would need to price out whether a JR Pass makes sense with your itinerary or not. I guess you could also overnight in Kanazawa vs. Toyama and see Kanazawa and then either take the shinkansen back or fly from Komatsu Airport to Haneda. Again, you would need to price out and figure out time-wise what makes the most sense for you.

Good luck!
by rkold rate this post as useful

Re: Around and outside Tokyo - itinerary 2019/5/9 22:58
For Ghibli, yes presales Start on 10/May for June. I.e. tomorrow. Actually in a few hours. I think at 9 am in Japan (look it up).
If you want a weekend or a specific date, you should get on the site when it opens. The tickets sell out within minutes. Itfs not as bad as sumo where it sells out within seconds, but I tried once in the evening of the same day, and that was way too late. When I visited with my husband earlier this year he got up at 2 am in EU to buy the tickets and needed to struggle for some time but finally got exactly the tickets we wanted.

Enjoy your trip to Japan!
by LikeBike (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Around and outside Tokyo - itinerary 2019/5/10 11:34
Thanks rkold and LikeBike for the further info. I just got my Ghibli tickets for 19 June! Took me 40min of trying. lol. BTW I did my Osaka-Kyoto-Nara-Arima Onsen-Kobe trip last Nov-Dec. It was fabulous! My trip next month to Tokyo was a late decision, so I'm really scrambling now to piece it together. Still need to book my accommodation. I usually start planning and booking months ahead. Now I just have a few weeks. Which is why I keep changing plans... as I get more info. As it stands, I've decided to leave the Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route for another trip cos there is too much to do there. I'll do the Toyama and Nagano area in my next trip... maybe when the new Ghibli Theme Park opens.

Now I think I will keep this trip to Tokyo (including Fireflies night at Shibuya, Ghibli Museum & around Mitaka, Disney Sea), Nikko (stay 1 nite?) and Mother Farm in Chiba.

What's good in Chiba? Does it make sense to stay a nite or two in Chiba, or is there not much to do? I thought of staying there since I'm planning to visit Mother Farm and will be flying off from Narita Airport. I saw limited info on Awamata Waterfall in Chiba and apparently there is a walking trail, but it may be quite quiet. Is it safe to go on the trail? My mom-in-law will be with us. Is the trail suitable for the elderly?

Is there anything near Nikko or on the way that is more worth visiting than going around Tokyo? My hubby and I have previously holidayed in Tokyo so we would prefer to spend time elsewhere. We've been to Hakone as well, but don't mind going again cos I missed the Open Air museum previously and I think my daughter will enjoy Yunessun.

Thanks very much for any further suggestion!

by qfam rate this post as useful

Re: Around and outside Tokyo - itinerary 2019/5/10 15:24
I liked Sawara and Katori jinja in Chiba.

Then there is a big temple in Narita and also a kind of open air Museum close to Narita (where I havenft been yet).

If you fly out of Narita and like onsen, I can recommend the Narita View Hotel close to the airport. The onsen right now is under refurbishment but they will conclude I think in early June.

There are also some flower parks. Hitachi Seaside and Ashikaga (not chiba maybe). I havenft been. Just have a look at the chiba webpage of this internet page.

Enjoy your trip to Japan!

by LikeBike (guest) rate this post as useful

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