I wrote earlier about things to do in and around Tokyo and got some really good advice/ideas. I started doing some research about the train system in Tokyo. We will be there a week in mid-February next year. We are staying at the Tokyo Hilton in Shinjuku so we are about a 10 minute walk to the Shinjuku train station. I believe there is a train loop around Tokyo, maybe the JR Yamanote line, has anyone had experience with the train system in Tokyo and if so is it fairly easy to navigate? There will be four of us and I am always elected to research and find the info. Train tickets, is it best to get at the station? We will be wanting a multi day pass. Any information will be helpful and appreciated. As long as I have you all here, does anyone have any experience with transportation to and from the Haneda Airport to downtown Tokyo? I haven’t started looking at that yet. Our flight out to Hong Kong (after our week in Tokyo) will be around 8:00 AM so we will need a flexible transportation service. As I said there will be four of us and we will probably have two large suitcases each plus a few smaller items. We always bring home a lot of gifts (pasalubong as they are called in Tagalog. My wife and the other couple I travel with are Filipino so it is a customary tradition during travels to buy gifts).
Thank you you in advance for any ideas/advice.
I have not been to Japan, but the website Man In Seat 61 offers lots of information you might find helpful. I pasted part of this site below. And what is best, you can email the Man and he will respond asap. I can't wait to see your posts when you return. Have a great time planning this one.
How to explore Japan by rail...
The best way to get around Japan is by train. On this page you'll find an introduction to train travel in Japan, with advice on times, routes, tickets and passes...
An overview of train travel in Japan...
How to check train times & fares
How to buy tickets
Maps of Japan's rail network
Classes & reservations
Japan Rail pass guide
Japan Rail Pass or point to point tickets?
What does a Japan Rail Pass cover?
How does a Japan Rail Pass work?
Making reservations to go with your pass
How to buy a Japan Rail Pass
Regional passes & Seishun 18 Kippu pass
A suggested 7-day itinerary in pictures
What are Japanese trains like?
Shinkansen Watch the video guides
Ordinary & Rapid trains
Tips, airport links, useful info...
Travel tips: Luggage, food, WiFi, finding your train
Finding your way around Tokyo station
Haneda Airport train link
Narita Airport train link
Useful country information - currency, visas, time zone etc.
Ryokans, capsule hotels & the Tokyo Station Hotel
Tours of Japan by train - organised for you
I have been to Tokyo and Japan numerous times. Tokyo is unlike any other cities in the world in public transportation. The network is "complex". There are two independent subway companies in addition to JR (Japan Railway). There are many options of daily or multi-day passes but most of them are over-priced. The Japan Guide website is a good resource for research. https://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2017.html
What I do is I buy tickets every time I ride which is cheaper. There are so many ticket vending machines in each station and there is almost no line for purchasing tickets. Please see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=24Jr61cXl1g for ticket purchase from a machine.
For the most part of Tokyo is well covered by the JR Yamanote line (circular line) which connects Shinjuku, Harajuku, Shinuya, Shinagawa, Tokyo Stattion, Akihabara, Ueno, and Ikebukuro. Perhaps one of the only places that is away from the Yamanote Line that everyone visits is Asakusa (Sensoji area), but you can take Toei metro (different from JR) at Shinjuku to Bakuroyokoyama and walk to Higashi Nihonbashi to take the Toei Asakusa line to Asakusa.
I think the best option to go to Haneda Airport for your case is airport limousine bus. It is inexpensive (1,230 yen for one way, early morning fare is 2,000 yen) and there is a designated space for luggages. Taxi is expensive in Japan and four people in a taxi with a lot of luggage is not a comfy way to travel. The airport limousine bus stops right at the Hilton Shinjuku which is a big plus.
If you have more questions, feel free to ask.
Thank you very much. That is a lot of information. I’ll definitely check out those sites and look into the airport limousine bus. I wish we had more than a week in Japan but I’m the only one in our group that’s retired.
Seems you recovered well from your hip surgery? See you actively planning your upcoming trip... :-)
Tokyo is such a great city, you will have a lot of fun and great food! I am a little jealous....
Liketraveling, so far so good on the hip. I’ll be close to 100% by the time we leave in mid February. I'm Still restricted on some of my activities but I can finally start getting caught up on some of the things around the house. Thanks for your thoughts.
If I may suggest, one of the great day trips is Hakone using Hakone Free Pass (https://www.odakyu.jp/english/passes/hakone/). It costs 5,700 yen (~$50) that includes round trip train from Shinjuku to Hakone, all transportations through the fascinating Hakone area where you can see amazing Owakudani volcanic valley, Lake Ashi, and beautiful shrine by the lake. You may also see Mountain Fuji if you are lucky.
Botticelli nailed it!! That's the best day trip from Tokyo ever...check out the village on the first gondola stop, great little sushi restaurant...or have a dinner at Hakone-Yumoto on the way back to Tokyo...don't forget to try one of those steam boiled eggs on top of the mountain (active volcanic area)...and enjoy the view of Mount Fuji on a clear day...I posted a couple of stories about the area, check it out :-)
Forgot to mention, check out a possible day trip to Nikko (UNESCO World Heritage Site), less than 2 hours by train...incredible temple complex and plenty of fresh air