Stress free sightseeing in Kyoto

Kiyomizudera

There’s been a lot written lately about over-tourism in Japan, and how popular destinations such as Kyoto are becoming overcrowded. Tourists often note in their reviews of Kyoto’s most well-known sights how crowded they are. For someone researching and planning their trip, these reports can sound pretty discouraging. What they imagined was admiring beautiful historic temples and shrines, not being wedged in with the teeming tourist hordes. Continue reading “Stress free sightseeing in Kyoto”

How far is it to…?

Snow monkeys at Jigokudani Monkey Park

Travel distances in Japan are greater than would-be visitors often think which leads to over-estimating how much can be fitted into the trip. A common mental image is that they will arrive and be whisked by shinkansen (bullet train) from the airport to Tokyo and then on to Mount Fuji.

The shinkansen doesn’t go everywhere in Japan, just between major cities. There are other trains on Japan’s extensive rail network, including limited express and local trains. These are slower than shinkansen, but very useful for getting around. Continue reading “How far is it to…?”