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Japan Do 2023 - Tokyo - 6-9 April 2023

Old Mar 11, 23, 9:41 pm
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Last edit by: NewbieRunner
Provisional List of Events

Thursday 6 April 7pm - Meet and Greet Drinks - Mikkeller Kanda (see post #67)
Friday 7 April - Walking tour of Ueno Park, Kappabashi shopping street and Asakusa with an optional water bus trip down the Sumida River (see post #76)
Friday 7 April 7-9pm - Official Do Dinner - Kakoiya, 7-9-20 Ginza, Tokyo (see post #73)
Saturday 8 April - Day trip to Okutama (mountainous area of western Tokyo), a short hike along Hatonosu Gorge and a cablecar ride up Mt Mitake (929m) (see post #75)
Sunday 9 April - Explore less known areas of Tokyo

* * * * * * * * * *
Do Dinner Attendees
Please add your handle below (or post in the thread) as soon as possible if you are coming to the Do Dinner on Friday 7 April. Details in post #73.

NewbieRunner
Sykes
ClaudiSTR
cocobird
chrisflyer66
nomadic.relief
Majuki
TravelKane
beckoa
beckoa+1
elliott44k


* * * * * * * * * *

Attendees:

cocobird - The Royal Park Hotel Iconic Tokyo Shiodome (talk about a mouthful)
NewbieRunner - Remm Hibiya
Majuki - Moxy Tokyo Kinshicho
beckoa (arrive Fri pm)
nomadic.relief - Comfort Hotel Kanda
TravelKane - Westin
ClaudiSTR - Friday evening to Sunday noon Moxy Kinshicho or Courtyard Tokyo Station
ChrisFlyer66 - Hilton Shinjuku Wed-Sat, Comfort Hotel Kanda Sat-Monday
tuchop (Dinner only)
BigRedBears - Comfort Hotel Kanda
lowjhg (part of the DO)
Flier John - local
elliott44k (Thurs & Fri evening)
svimonoff - local
Sykes - Grand Hyatt (probably)
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Japan Do 2023 - Tokyo - 6-9 April 2023

Old Mar 18, 23, 2:03 pm
  #76  
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Walking tour of Ueno Park, Kappabashi and Asakusa - Friday 7 April

Walking tour of Ueno Park, Kappabashi shopping street and Asakusa - Friday 7 April 2023
Meeting time and place: 10am at JR Ueno Station Park Exit (公園口)
This is a new exit on the upper level towards Uguisudani and Nippori (towards the front of the train if coming from Tokyo or Kanda) and across a street from Ueno Park.


JR Ueno Station Park Exit (公園口)


Ueno Park is famous for several museums and home to Ueno Zoo, Japan’s first zoological garden. Ueno Park is also one of Tokyo’s most popular cherry blossom spots with more than 1,000 cherry trees though we will be too late this year unfortunately.

After Ueno Park we may catch a 100-yen bus (may use Suica, Pasmo, etc.) for a short ride to Kappabashi Street which is lined with stores selling everything needed by restaurant operators with the exception of fresh food! There are stores for dishes, pots, pans, cooking utensils, as well as those selling plastic and wax food samples which you see outside many restaurants in Japan. Lunch will hopefully be monjayaki, a type of okonomiyaki.


Food samples in a Kappabashi store - far more expensive than the real thing


Monjayaki



After lunch we will walk though Asakusa Nakamise street, visit Sensō-ji Temple and Kaminarimon Gate.


Sensō-ji Tempke


Those interested will walk down to the river to board a water bus to Hamarikyu Garden or Hinode Pier depending on timing. It will take 35-40 mins and cost 1,040 yen to Hamarikyu (including entrance to the garden) or 860-1,200 yen to Hinode Pier (depending on the type of boat). Hinode Pier is close to Hinode Yurikamome Light Rail station and about 15 minutes walk to JR Hamamatsuchō Station. For anyone leaving the group in Asakusa, Metro Asakusa and Ginza Line Asakusa Stations are nearby.


Sumida River water bus
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Old Mar 18, 23, 2:36 pm
  #77  
 
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Sadly, I couldn’t change my plans to try to join you all, rather than going this May. (Someone at work already had Easter week booked up). I will try my best to join next year’s DO. While next years location isn’t decided yet (Nagoya?) I may book flights at least to Tokyo as early as the end of the month (a year before next Easter) since Aeroplan availability is so scarce nowadays.

Have fun, looks like amazing activities planned. I will watch this thread for inspirational ideas for my visit to Tokyo in mid May.
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Old Mar 18, 23, 3:13 pm
  #78  
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Originally Posted by wysiwyg View Post
Sadly, I couldnt change my plans to try to join you all, rather than going this May. (Someone at work already had Easter week booked up). I will try my best to join next years DO. While next years location isnt decided yet (Nagoya?) I may book flights at least to Tokyo as early as the end of the month (a year before next Easter) since Aeroplan availability is so scarce nowadays.

Have fun, looks like amazing activities planned. I will watch this thread for inspirational ideas for my visit to Tokyo in mid May.
Sorry you cant make the Do this year. Enjoy Japan in May and I look forward to seeing you next year.
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Old Mar 18, 23, 5:56 pm
  #79  
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Dinner looks exciting.

Will be heading from HND with luggage; hope this is not a huge issue, as our flight is scheduled to arrive at 5:25 PM (JL 15) unless this is too tight. Looks like its about a 30 minute ride to the restaurant.
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Old Mar 18, 23, 6:15 pm
  #80  
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Any plans for a Post-DO around TYO?

Originally Posted by The_Wrath_of_Khan View Post
I live down here so let me know. Unfortunately our Costco is delayed until next summer!
Still thinking about an OKA visit post-TYO, probably about to book. Sorry you won't make it this time to Tokyo.
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Old Mar 19, 23, 12:46 am
  #81  
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Originally Posted by beckoa View Post
Dinner looks exciting.

Will be heading from HND with luggage; hope this is not a huge issue, as our flight is scheduled to arrive at 5:25 PM (JL 15) unless this is too tight. Looks like its about a 30 minute ride to the restaurant.
JAL seems to have an arrangement for pre-bookable taxis but I can only find information in Japanese and am not sure if they are any cheaper than ordinary taxis. According to a couple of sites I checked a taxi will cost between 6,800-7,200 yen and takes 25-30 minutes.

Originally Posted by beckoa View Post
Any plans for a Post-DO around TYO?
Nothing official. Im travelling to Kyoto on Monday for a couple of nights before hiking in Kii Peninsula but I believe some people are staying on around Tokyo for a few days after the Do.
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Old Mar 19, 23, 7:11 am
  #82  
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Originally Posted by NewbieRunner View Post
JAL seems to have an arrangement for pre-bookable taxis but I can only find information in Japanese and am not sure if they are any cheaper than ordinary taxis. According to a couple of sites I checked a taxi will cost between 6,800-7,200 yen and takes 25-30 minutes.
Thinking about taking the rail.


Google Maps indicates its a direct shot plus a short walk


Originally Posted by NewbieRunner View Post
Nothing “official”. I’m travelling to Kyoto on Monday for a couple of nights before hiking in Kii Peninsula but I believe some people are staying on around Tokyo for a few days after the Do.
Ok. we were thinking of spending Sunday and Monday in Tokyo, then heading for Osaka on Tuesday by rail. Kyoto would be fun too. Then hop over to OKA for the weekend. Already have a flight back for two more nights in TYO for some "edible souvenir" shopping

Last edited by NewbieRunner; Mar 19, 23 at 4:00 pm Reason: Fixed broken quote tags
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Old Mar 19, 23, 4:26 pm
  #83  
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Originally Posted by beckoa View Post
Thinking about taking the rail.

Google Maps indicates its a direct shot plus a short walk
Good news is JL15 seems to arrive more or less on time with c.10 minutes delay most days. Bad news is there are quite a few international arrivals in late afternoon.

Make sure you complete Visit Japan Web as it is supposed to speed things up on arrival. Someone I know recently arrived in Japan without knowing anything about it. I dont know how she got on but it was her first visit to Japan so there was nothing to compare her experience with. Another friend who had visited Japan a few times before didnt think anything was necessary because if you go to Visit Japan Web (previously called MySOS for some reason!) the first thing you see on their website is:

No longer required to register your passport and answer the questions on the web for the Quarantine process (Fast Track) from Dec. 28, 2022. Due to these updates, QR code for Quarantine will not be shown any longer.

A very badly designed system and instructions (which I had to read in both English and Japanese and still couldnt understand) are confusing but it replaces landing and customs forms you used to have to complete on paper and allows you to upload Covid vaccination records (3 needed) online. Once you receive your QR codes and a blue screen Pre-registration for quarantine procedures take a screenshot of each so you can show them without having to connect to the Internet.

Im not sure how long immigration will take but arriving at 17:25 and getting on a 18:05 train sounds over-optimistic. Ive never flown on JL F but when I arrived on LH F you not only leave the aircraft before anyone else your luggage should come out first as well and when I came through passport control there was someone waiting for me with my bag.

Only Keikyū trains which run through service to Toei Metro Asakusa Line will take you directly to Higashi Ginza, which is about 7 blocks away from Ginza Lion Building. The destination of the trains should be either Inzai-makinohara (印西牧の原) or Inba Nihon Idai (印旛日本医大) and they leave HND T3 at18:05, 18:15, 18:25, 18:35, and 18:55 taking 34-37 minutes to Higashi-Ginza. Third carriage from the back is closest to the exit. Look out for A1 exit which has an elevator.

Although Keikyū/Metro is probably the most straightforward public transportation option it is not the fastest. Monorail (every 5-6 minutes) to Hamamatsuchō (in 19 minutes) and taxi from there (1.2km so not expensive) might be the quickest. Slightly more expensive but I suggest monorail + taxi. Lets hope your flight arrives on time or early.
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Old Yesterday, 12:39 am
  #84  
 
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Originally Posted by NewbieRunner View Post
Make sure you complete Visit Japan Web as it is supposed to speed things up on arrival. Someone I know recently arrived in Japan without knowing anything about it. I dont know how she got on but it was her first visit to Japan so there was nothing to compare her experience with. Another friend who had visited Japan a few times before didnt think anything was necessary...
VJW is not required, but it will save you from having to fill out paper forms and bypass the health check prior to passport control. This can save some time since you'll likely be behind everyone who has this in the line for passport control if you go the manual route. It's also easier to flash the QR code to the staff at the airline ticket counters when checking in for your flight.

I can't speak for passport control or customs itself if you didn't use VJW, but with VJW they are doing some facial recognition thing at customs now at both NRT and HND. The paper customs form appeared to get more scrutiny and a manual inspection from the handful of people I saw going that route. With VJW you just walked out while passing through the facial recognition.
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