Going over seas, Japan edition rev. X - http://www.mmcafe.com/ Forums


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Spoon
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"Going over seas, Japan edition rev. X" , posted Tue 13 Jul 10:13post reply

I'm going to visit Japan for a few weeks this Summer, and I'll be all over the place (i.e. not just in Tokyo/Osaka/etc.

Do rattle off things that are interesting and worthwhile; I know last time some folks here asked was awhile ago, and I remember already in that thread there were notes about places that were more or less worthwhile to see, given how times change things.

And this being mmcafe, I'd sure love to hear about any extremely esoteric bits of information, like what kind of pornography a place is the capital of...






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Maou
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"Re(1):Going over seas, Japan edition rev. X" , posted Tue 13 Jul 11:27:post reply

Good man, you've chosen a nice time. I'll be there, too. Nice good sweaty weather, lots of festivals and special events about.

Here is my 30 second no-thinking version:

Tokyo: Shibuya for glitz and good book/game stores, Takadanobaba for great food and the Waseda crowd, Tokyo Bay for a fun monorail ride and and a rare sight of actual bay, Ueno for a quieter time and some nice zoo and park action, Kanda for good book stores, not Roppongi because it is gross and non-gorgeous, Yoyogi Park for weekend frisbee and nearness to Harajuku, Shinjuku for good food and red light hilarity.

Near Tokyo: Enoshima, because it is a great mountainy-island with fun beaches and nice weather; Kamakura because everyone likes large Buddhas and disastrously tame deer.

Kyoto: you know all this already.

Gunma: Because I lived there and it is awesome. Isesaki also has a gigantic black windowless superstore similar to this one referenced by Brandon that has rows and rows and rows and rows of games, comics, fishing equipment, model guns, anything else you could possibly nerd out over. And Takasaki is where three prime ministers came from, including at least one who actually mattered, so there.

Stretching it:
-Aomori, Akita: because this is where the prettiest girls in the country are, even if everyone around has a mumbly accent.
-Ishikawa: Because it's right on the Sea of Japan, has hot springs, great shrines in the middle of the woods, Kanazawa is a fun city, and it's generally great.

There you go!





人間はいつも私を驚かせてくれる。不思議なものだな、人間という存在は...

[this message was edited by Maou on Tue 13 Jul 11:28]

Professor
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"Re(1):Going over seas, Japan edition rev. X" , posted Tue 13 Jul 12:24:post reply

quote:
I'm going to visit Japan for a few weeks this Summer, and I'll be all over the place (i.e. not just in Tokyo/Osaka/etc.

Do rattle off things that are interesting and worthwhile; I know last time some folks here asked was awhile ago, and I remember already in that thread there were notes about places that were more or less worthwhile to see, given how times change things.

And this being mmcafe, I'd sure love to hear about any extremely esoteric bits of information, like what kind of pornography a place is the capital of...



It depends on when you're going and what kind of experience you're looking for, but in general, summer is a good time because there's many events going on.

Basic guideline is-- Tokyo and Osaka for shopping and action, Hakone for traditional Japanese Ryokan(inn) and spring baths, and various regions including Kyoto, Aomori, Naruto, and Nara for heritages and culture.

The Japan National Tourism Organization provides some good information including an event calendar. The Aomori Nebuta Matsuri is pretty grand if you can make it there. Summer is a good time to check Mt.Fuji.

Get a JR rail pass if you're traveling throughout the country.

Don't underestimate accomodations in the summer. Plan early, get reservations.
Having a laptop PC or a PSP and staying somewhere with net access can help.

In terms of shopping, Tokyo is the mecca though Osaka can be cheaper. Omotesandou and Ginza for high-class shopping. Harajuku and Ikebukuro for cheap pop style stuff. Shibuya and Shinjuku for food. Nakano and Akihabara for game and general otaku related shopping, which you might want to avoid in mid-August or you'll be swarmed by the Comiket crowd (unless you're into that doujin stuff).





[this message was edited by Professor on Tue 13 Jul 18:16]

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"Re(2):Going over seas, Japan edition rev. X" , posted Wed 14 Jul 04:55post reply

Thanks for the tips.

Any advice for sites that track live music shows? I'd especially like to see a performance by some of the many chiptune groups, but all I've come across so far happens when I'm not around. This site (http://www.tokyogigguide.com/en/gigs) has some interesting listings conveniently in English, but I'm sure that they're far from a comprehensive listing. If only I could catch the showings of YMCK or Hip Tanaka!





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"Re(3):Going over seas, Japan edition rev. X" , posted Wed 28 Jul 15:06post reply

quote:
Thanks for the tips.

Any advice for sites that track live music shows? I'd especially like to see a performance by some of the many chiptune groups, but all I've come across so far happens when I'm not around. This site (http://www.tokyogigguide.com/en/gigs) has some interesting listings conveniently in English, but I'm sure that they're far from a comprehensive listing. If only I could catch the showings of YMCK or Hip Tanaka!



One good site to check for the latest stuff is METROPOLIS, the top magazine dedicated to English speakers living in Japan.
They have a listing for upcoming shows, events and whatnot.

Btw, Japan is hitting record-breaking heat right now, like somewhere in the mid 90-s. So if you're planning to hit the country soon, make sure to be prepared.