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📙 Frommer's Japan by Beth Reiber, Janie Spencer — pdf free


This is a must have for any trip to Japan. We recently visited Japan for 12 days and found this guide book to be invaluable. We stayed mainly in Tokyo - but definitely get JAPAN instead of Frommer's Tokyo because it includes all of the Tokyo info and gives lots of great information on side trips. All of the suggestions for activities and restaurants were home runs. ESPECIALLY Andy's Shin-himoto restaurant in Ginza Tokyo. It was just as advertised, incredibly fresh delicious food for an amazing value. We were seated next to a local foodie who was astounded that we knew about his favorite "find". 5 stars! The suggested day trips from Tokyo were also home runs. We did a night in Hakone and found the tips on buying the Hakone Free Pass and places to stay (we stayed at the historic Fuji-ya Hotel) were again, invaluable. The high point of our trip was a day trip to Kamakura. We appreciated the trip even more having read the history of the giant Buddha and the Kannon-Do provided in the Frommer's. Most popular tourist locations in Japan have English pamphlets, but not all. It's wonderful having the details and history to reference in the Frommer's, every experience is more fulfilling. Quick tip about Kamakura - the "Nature Trail" is a full-on hiking trail that is much longer than it looks on the tourist map. It was fun, but dress appropriately. One companion piece to Frommer's Japan that is also a Must Have is Tokyo Street Atlas: A Bilingual Guide Tokyo City Atlas: A Bilingual Guide (3rd Ed.). The Frommer's maps are limited in size and scope, but the Tokyo Atlas has tons of very good, detailed maps - including subway maps that include the JR lines and MAJOR plus - all the street names are also listed in the corresponding Japanese characters. Note, the title says "Guide" but the Tokyo Atlas is just maps. The information on Japanese culture and customs in the Frommer's were helpful but a little outdated. We may have seen things a little differently because we are younger (30) but one major thing we found that differed was the amount of Japanese people who spoke English. Many know some English and we found that lots of people wanted to speak English with us. The Frommer's said that Japanese people are shy about speaking English and that it's hard to get them to converse with you - we found this is not the case at all! We met many friendly Japan natives who engaged us in conversation, welcoming us and suggesting sights to see. Also, most people in the service industry know some working English, so it is easy to buy things and ask for help on the Subway. A tip from us - most places don't take credit cards - especially museums and subways. You cannot expect to do this vacation on plastic, you have to have lots of cash (yen) on hand. I think I was able to use my credit card about 4 times and most cards charge a "foreign currency service fee" which is a percentage of each transaction. The best place to get cash out and get large bills broken in Japan is the Post Office. All Post Office locations have ATMs and the postal employees are ready and willing to break your large bills. Japan is a MUST SEE country. If you are planning a trip there, congratulations! You are making an excellent decision. We found the country to be clean, friendly, easy to navigate and full of rich culture, traditions and delicious food. Frommer's Japan is the perfect guide book to help you fully enjoy your trip. I recommend buying it before you plan your trip. In hindsight, I would have liked to build in a two day trip to Kyoto - guess I'll have to go back! Enjoy your trip to Japan!

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