Hotel Sun City in Chiba... But cheap also need $130+ per day. What I like about this hotel is it is very accessible. Chiba station is just few minutes away! Some train line is like LRT... Have to look out! This Sun City hotel is along is JR line.
personally, i prefer free and easy tours because i like to walk with the locals along the streets, and i'm practically free to go anywhere and no time limit for sight seeing and no long bus rides.
Language may be a problem, but picking up some simple japanese like 'sumimasen' (means "excuse me" for hailing down locals for asking directions, or "Sorry" for accidents like bumping into people), 'arigato' (means Thank you) helps... usually the young japanese adults knows a bit of english, so is not too bad after all. In City areas, maps, road guides, train station names comes with english (or rather romanji), but if you wander off the city areas (like what me and hubby did who went to the outskirts), english is not a language to communicate as not many folks (esp the older generation) and sign boards will be able to help.
However, if you are really scared of getting lost and too shy to approach anybody for help, then, booking for a guided tour will be a better option.
If u dont mind ryokan (Traditional Japanese Room, have to sleep on the floor) without bathroom inside the room u can try Kimi Ryokan. Cheap n good location. Is at Ikebukuro. Less than $100 per nite for 2.
Bride to be, Definitely free and easy!!! I did a 9-day trip to Tokyo and the surrounding areas (Hakone, Nikko and Kamakura) and it cost us
$4500 for 2 persons including airfare. Contrary to common thought, it's not that difficult to get around Japan, esp Tokyo and Kyoto and Osaka. Tour packages can be cheaper but if you look at the itineraries of most of the tour agencies, they're very very rushed and you spend alot of time on the coach and getting stuck in traffic jams. I've been to Japan twice and my recommendation is always to do it yourself
My FH and i planned our own tour when we visit Japan last year. Its a 9D7N trip to Tokyo, Kyoto, Nara and Osaka. If you are interested, you can leave me yr email address and i will send u copy.
it included some of the cheaper accommodation that our friends had recommended. We stay in ryokan most of the time to experience japan traditional living.
5 minute walk to train station. safe neighbourhood. come out and walk in any directions for 5 minutes and you will get lawsons or food stalls.
If you are travelling in the area, Kyoto is where the tourist attractions are. Osaka is just 30 minutes away by train. (JR west pass to save $$) We "base" in Kyoto and made day trips to the wonderful nearby areas like osaka, nara, otsu, ohara etc.if you go now, you can also catch the dying art of catching fish using birds in the nearby arashiyama.
The place is new-opened in 2002, spotlessly clean and with great owners.
Do not worry about the dorm thing. it is safe. one dorm can fit up to 5 person. when i went there, there were only 2 of us gals, and a group of angmoh guys wanted to get a place there too. the owner asked us if we are comfortable sharing, we said "not really", and they turned the guys away. we felt pretty bad about it, but it really impressed us. the owners are very sensitive to this sort of things and would rather keep rooms empty than make us share.
Hi durian! Me n hubby intend to go 7d Hokkaido pkg tour than extend 3nites in either osaka or kyoto. Which would u recommend for easy move around? N wat type of train pass should we buy?
Was recommended by another forum on the above buget inn u mention... but how come it looks so diff huh...n the price oso diff leh...? Which is the latest? http://www.kyotojp.com/index.html
TOkyo isn't an onsen area. If u want, u can go to Odaiba, they've a fake onsen theme park there.
Or rather, take a train to Hakone for a true onsen experience at their ryokans. U can choose whether to have attached bathroom depending on the hotel. Of course, it comes at a price.
thanks for replying. I'm tinking of going to hakone for onsen n ryokan experience. any recom.
also any idea if Ikebukuro is ok or near shopping places because my hotel is around there. is there such things like unsafe red light district where there's gangsters? sorry for sounding stupid
i been to this one at Mt Mitake which is at the outskirts of Tokyo (mind you, it is outside tourist map & you may need to know a bit of Japanese to ask for directions). Anyway, there's a onsen there (according to the local tourists we met when hiking on the nearby mountains.
The ryokan i lived @ Mt Mitake have a nice bath area. however, no attached bathroom.
as for Ikebukuro, hmm... i used to stay there for about 3 days @ hotel Sunroute Ikebukuro, i agree is it some kind of red light district, but it is relatively safe, didn't see any gangsters fight... but there's one night we saw a gang of big motorcycles 'brooming' past. Heard there's a good buffet place near this hotel, didn't get to try (only know after i come back)
I've replied your PM. Ikebukuro is a very lively place, very convenient too. If you like shopping in Shinjuku, you'll love this place. My hb and i like this place better than Shinjuku coz it's got lots of shopping but not as crowded and cramped like Shinjuku.
Japan is relatively safe. So don't have to worry. We were carrying a lot of Yen coz in Japan, they don't usually accept credit cards. Even for many motels & ryokans. We were so scared we'll get robbed. But thank God, nothing happened.
If you're going Hakone, get their 2 or 3 days pass. Cheaper that way, coz u get unlimited travel on their public transport in Hakone as well as take their cable cars, ropeways, ferry rides.
no mt mitake(my photos) is not at hakone, it is at tokyo and as i said it is not exactly found in tourist maps. in the matter of fact, from the cluster of mountains around mitake, we can see Mt Fuji at quite a small scale (which is where hakone is).
Yah, i went to Tsukiji. But i was lazy, so always end up being there only after all the action is over. Anyway, i think they closed the auction grounds to public already, coz too many tourists. Can just walk thru the market, it's quite a sight to see the huge tunas lying there.
The sushi is not that cheap there but it's very fresh. Also, if you're not the sushi type, u may find it yucky to eat sushi for breakfast. U can try going there for lunch if u want. U can still get good sushi at other places. We went to one restaurant at ikebukuro which served 1000y sashimi set lunch. Really value for money! But of course, u've to learn some basic Japanese coz the set lunches are all written in Japanese only. So to get good deals, you've to learn to read a bit of katakana & hiragana. If u don't want to learn too many things, at least learn to decipher "set lunch :teishoku", "buffet: tabehoodai", "sushi" & "sashimi"