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Japan, September #26

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dylanegan opened this Issue August 01, 2012 · 100 comments

6 participants

Dylan Egan Ben Schwarz Danish Khan Jed Schmidt Ben Burkert Noah Zoschke
Dylan Egan
Owner

/cc @benburkert @benschwarz

Hang around Sapporo during RubyKaigi, check out Hokkaido and then back for some fun in Tokyo?

I was thinking about getting the train from Tokyo to Sapporo and then flying back.

Ben Schwarz

That is basically exactly what I'd like to do.
I've always wanted to get to Hokkaido & Sapporo, and Tokyo is crazy fun too.

If I can tack it on the end, I'd love to head to Singapore for the Formula 1 (21—23), but we'll have to see how that goes.

Ben Schwarz

Thats a great looking travel method… I've never done more than a few hours on a train.
Then a Shinkansen back to TK/NRT?

Dylan Egan
Owner

I reckon we fly back.

Dylan Egan
Owner

That is also Class J on Japan Airlines.

Ben Schwarz

Yep. Flying is going to be cheaper

Dylan Egan
Owner

Thinking about also doing something in Hakone instead of just being in Tokyo the whole time.

http://www.taiseikan.co.jp/en/index.html

Ben Schwarz
Dylan Egan
Owner

Also we should definitely get dinner, lunch, dinner and whisky with @jed. I'm thinking we have to hit up Kakurenbo at least once.

Dylan Egan
Owner

And for train planning, http://www.hyperdia.com/en/.

Dylan Egan
Owner

While on Hokkaido it looks like Noboribetsu and Otaru are close enough to Sapporo to check out. The former might require an overnight stay (or two).

The remains of a volcanic crater created by the volcanic eruption of Mt. Hiyori, Jigokudani is a representative landscape of the Noboribetsu Onsen area. Covering an area of 11 ha., there are many hot spring vents and blowholes spread across the gorge. Inspired by the frothing, boiling vents and blowholes, the name of the gorge comes from the folk-saying that the gorge was hell and the home of demons.

Dylan Egan
Owner

SPK to NRT with JAL is just under 200USD.

Around the same with ANA.

Being that there are only 5 flights during the day I am wondering if we should opt for an early one in case of any possible delays, but that would put us in NRT for a while.

Ben Schwarz
Dylan Egan
Owner

There's Traveler's Lounge Rassurants. What terminal do you depart from? Also add me to your inner circle on Tripit.

Ben Schwarz
Dylan Egan
Owner

@benschwarz OK. I'm departing from Terminal 2. We could also hang out in the surrounding area.

Ben Schwarz
Dylan Egan
Owner

Narita itself isn't far by train.

Danish Khan

I was thinking of getting to Tokyo a week before and doing whatever before the conference. I can't stay after the conference since I'll be heading from Sapporo straight to Frozen Rails in Helsinki.

Dylan Egan
Owner

@danishkhan cool. As I said we're planning to head up on the 13th by either train or plane. Train if we can get the ticket. That'll get us to the conference around 10:00.

Danish Khan

@dylanegan sweet sounds good to me. Are you guys going to get into Tokyo around the 10th then? I'll look into purchasing my tickets this week so I can at least get all that planned.

Ben Schwarz
Jed Schmidt
jed commented August 06, 2012

let me know if you need any travel-related (specifically, train-related) legwork done before you land, jah?

Ben Schwarz
Dylan Egan
Owner

@jed cheers. It seems like the train that we want pretty much sells out when it opens up for sale. It is available 30 days before at 10:00 (?) and it is possible to call up JR (might be possible to get on a waiting list at 06:00) to get a ticket organised I believe. I'm trying to dig the information up regarding all of that.

Anyways we're trying to get the Cassieopeia suite with the view (last carriage). It is around 47,000 JPY for two people.

Dylan Egan
Owner

@danishkhan yeah, we land on the 10th. I get in later, but will be up for some Tokyo after 20 hours of travel.

Dylan Egan
Owner

Should check out a few microbrewery bars. http://www.bento.com/r-beer.html

Dylan Egan
Owner

Should we try for Jiro's? It needs to be reserved as soon as possible if so. Starts at 30,000 JPY.

Jed Schmidt
jed commented August 13, 2012

yo, need some details about the train. how many am i booking for? can't book over the phone, so would like to stop by tokyo station today on the way home from work to take care of it.

Ben Schwarz
Jed Schmidt
jed commented August 13, 2012

nice, thanks for your speedy response / great hair. will aim for the 13th, but fridays looks really hairy. please indicate your order of preference below from 1 (most preferred) to 3 (least preferred):

[   ] Cassiopeia Suite with View
[   ] Cassiopeia Suite
[   ] Cassiopeia Deluxe
Ben Schwarz
Jed Schmidt
jed commented August 13, 2012

i'll ask about the rail pass, lemme get back to you. chances are it's a no-go and i'm gonna have to pay up front for the tickets, but will let you know.

Ben Schwarz
Jed Schmidt
jed commented August 14, 2012

well damn. left the office early to get some cash and then the tix, and by the time i got to JR both the 11th and 13th were sold out. any chance the 15th is okay? please advise.

Ben Schwarz
Dylan Egan
Owner

@jed no problem, thanks for trying. It looks like it is really hard to get tickets. @benschwarz is going to contact a local Japanese travel agency in Melbourne to see if they can help us organise something for the way back, but either way we'll be in Japan. :D

Ben Schwarz

I called the Melbourne Japanese travel board people—They say that over the years they've only been able to secure ONE ticket. Apparently all the agents go down to JR and book the tickets one month ahead just like Jed tried to… and it sells out every time.

So unless Mr @jed is able to get us a return ticket, looks like we're boned :-}

Jed Schmidt
jed commented August 14, 2012

i'm willing to get there at 8am, but you gotta let me know (1) the date you want to return and (2) the date the ticket goes on sale. i'll make sure i'm at the JR "view plaza" in the morning.

Dylan Egan
Owner

@benschwarz the train only comes back on even days during September. So we could either try for the 16th or the 18th. The 16th would give us more time in Tokyo. We could head up to Sapporo on the 11th or even the 10th if we want to just fly up straight away.

The tickets for the 16th go on sale on the 17th and the 18th on the 19th. This is as far as I can tell from http://www.jreast.co.jp/cassiopeia/reserve/index.html. Also it seems like the 11th and 13th train have now been updated to have "some" capacity, but I can only assume they're not the sleeper carriages that we want.

Ben Schwarz
Jed Schmidt
jed commented August 15, 2012

so, sunday morning then?

WHAT ABOUT CHURCH?

Ben Schwarz
Dylan Egan
Owner

Sounds good to me.

Dylan Egan
Owner

Just a reminder that the 18th goes on sale tomorrow (according to the reservations site). Let us know if you require any further details.

Ben Schwarz

Perhaps we can add this to the list of things to do during the day.
http://www.nezu-muse.or.jp/en/index.html

Jed Schmidt
jed commented August 17, 2012

yep, inquiring at the shibuya JR office this afternoon re: what godawful hour i need to show up tomorrow to get tickets. wil keep you posted.

btw, not sure you're into it, but i've done this a few times and it's good fun: all you can eat/drink monja yaki for two hours on a boat around tokyo bay.

Dylan Egan
Owner

Both sound good to me. Also thanks again @jed. Hope they're able to give a clear answer.

Jed Schmidt
jed commented August 18, 2012

aight, here's the dilly.

got a ticket for you guys on the 18th back from sapporo. you still need a boarding ticket, but you can either get a JR pass or buy it when you get here.

BUT.

it turns out the tickets went on sale today, not tomorrow. so i wasn't able to get a fancy room, just a large twin (the lower of the two here). which looks not bad to me.

turns out the fancy rooms are crazy limited. there's only 5 of them total per train. you have to show up when the office opens at 5:30 am to enter a lottery that ends at 10 am. i love you guys, but not that much.

Jed Schmidt
jed commented August 18, 2012

also lemme know if you need me to make a jiro and/or monja boat reservation. i can't go to the former on account of going with @mikeal in november, but can book it if you give me a date, deal?

Dylan Egan
Owner

@jed thank you so much. Super excited for this trip. As this will most likely be the only train I think we might be fine grabbing the boarding ticket when we're there. Unless we want to travel around Hokkaido.

Regarding the boat, I will see if there are others interested in that too.

Dylan Egan
Owner

@benschwarz so now that the train is organised are you good to head up on the 12th? I can reconfirm with Edoya for 10, 11 and 19.

Ben Schwarz

Sounds good to me. 3 days in tokyo will be tight to do very much… but we've kinda been there done it enough times I think.

Dylan Egan
Owner

Edoya is sorted for the adjusted dates.

Will look in to Sapporo and HND ✈ SPK.

Ben Schwarz
Danish Khan

Yo, I'll be in Sapporo from 9/9 - 9/16 let me know when you guys plan to get into Sapporo.

Dylan Egan
Owner

@danishkhan we get in on the 12th and depart the 18th. Where are you staying while in Sapporo?

Dylan Egan
Owner

@benschwarz do you want to proceed with http://www.jcrcorp.com/mobile/mobile_rental_simcard.htm? I'm happy to split it for 2 weeks. Looks like you can organise a pick up at the airport.

Ben Schwarz
Jed Schmidt
jed commented August 23, 2012

lemme know if you need a pre-landing address to ship anything to, jah?

Ben Schwarz
Danish Khan

I'm at ANA Hotel Sapporo.

Dylan Egan
Owner

@benschwarz we should be organised for accommodation in Sapporo. It is in a ryokan.

I'm going to book a JAL flight this afternoon on the 12th for 16:30, J Class.

Dylan Egan
Owner

@benschwarz want to do first class from HND ✈ SPK? It's around 30,000 JPY.

Dylan Egan
Owner

/cc @nzoschke

Ben Schwarz
Dylan Egan
Owner

OK, I booked my flight for the 16:30 leg.

@jed is the total 34,220JPY for the train that we owe you?

Jed Schmidt
jed commented August 25, 2012

yeah, something in that ballpark.

Dylan Egan
Owner

@jed are you available on the 10, 11 or 19 to go to http://tabelog.com/tokyo/A1316/A131601/13041029 or Kanemasu (http://tokyofood.blog128.fc2.com/blog-entry-18.html)? I think the former needs reservations. The latter might be a bit hard as you will be working and it is best to get there around 16:00.

Dylan Egan
Owner

@jed just looking at http://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&sl=&tl=en&u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.jreast.co.jp%2Fcassiopeia%2Faccom%2Ftwin.html and it looks like the room can take a third person. Does that mean we just need to buy three tickets if a third person wanted to join us?

Ben Schwarz
Dylan Egan
Owner

@benschwarz actually it is for @benburkert, but @jed is welcome to join us too. :D

Jed Schmidt
jed commented August 31, 2012

hey all,

which of the above restaurants should i prioritize in making reservations? also, date preference?

also, i think the ticket is just for the room, but lemme check.

Dylan Egan
Owner

@jed I'd prefer Kanemasu, but if you work during the day then it might be easier to get the other one. We're in town 10, 11 so either one. Then also on the 19th. I'm probably going to get some pizza when I get in. ;)

As for the train, I assume we can turn it in to 3, but if you could find out that'd be awesome.

Ben Schwarz

Inspired by @jed's tweet earlier:

http://www.nikka.com/eng/distilleries/yoichi.html (.jp only, no english)

Dylan Egan
Owner

Oh shit, I almost forgot. We have to hit up that Japanese curry place in Harajuku.

Ben Schwarz
Jed Schmidt

if you like soup curry, this is my favorite lunch place in tokyo.

Ben Burkert

6 am :sushi: at the :fish: market is also a must.

Jed Schmidt

@benburkert no sure when last you were at tsukiji, but it kind of sucks now that the wholesale market doesn't open to tourists until 9am. i stopped bringing folks there.

Ben Burkert

ah, lame. guess we'll have to go somewhere else for our sushi fix.

Dylan Egan
Owner

Sushi Mizutani is the apprentice from the documentary. We could try there.

Dylan Egan
Owner

What was the keema curry place called? I guess we can just walk there.

Ben Schwarz
Jed Schmidt

d00dz,

update on the train. went to JR today, and upped the cabin to three people for another ~$150, so you're set. keep in mind it's going to be somewhere south of comfortable with that many since they need to bring in a cot. there are still two twins left, so if you're okay with paying another ~$150 or so to get another room, let me know quick.

also, i asked about the dining car, and reservations also need to be made in advance, so take a look here and let me know if you need me to book this for ya.

Jed Schmidt

well, looks like kanemasu doesn't take reservations. i can swing monday off, so wanna play it safe and get there at opening?

Ben Schwarz
Dylan Egan
Owner

I think we're going to stick to one cabin unless @benburkert or @benschwarz want to go out on their own. As for the menu I think all three of us are down for the Japanese menu.

Oh and yeah, Kanemasu, I'm in for that on Monday. I'm arriving 13:25 at Haneda so I'll probably just head to the Ryokan get ready and then head out. According to Google it'll take me about an hour to get to Edoya.

Dylan Egan
Owner

Blue Pond Aoiike in Hokkaido.

Noah Zoschke

Haven't read this whole thread, but looking forward to meeting up in Tokyo. Here's my tripit:

https://www.tripit.com/trip/public/id/CD982D9189AF

Curry!

Ben Schwarz

@jed are we still boating? (from @dylanegan)

Dylan Egan
Owner

@jed if we don't boat would you be interested in dining at http://icaro-miyamoto.com? It seems to be à la carte and open till late so more likely to get a reservation.

Jed Schmidt

looks like the boat's sold out, alas.

Dylan Egan
Owner

@jed so should we try for Italian?

Dylan Egan
Owner

Thank you @jed for making this trip extra awesome. See you at Icaro.

Dylan Egan dylanegan closed this September 19, 2012
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