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Tokyo and Karuizawa

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Hong Kong, China
posts: 174
reviews: 13
Tokyo and Karuizawa

Hi

I'm planning a trip to Tokyo and would like to stop off at Karuizawa for possibly a couple of days for sightseeing. We are thinking of going late October or early November. We are planning a 6 day vacation. At the moment, its v flexible - I'm wondering what is the best and economical way of travelling. We are setting off from Hong Kong - do we take a direct flight into tokyo and stay for one night and then to begin our travel to Karuizawa the next morning by shinkasen? Or would it make more sense to go to Karuizawa as our first stop and if so, what is the best way to travel there from Narita/Haneda airport ?

Thank you in advance.

Hong Kong, China
Destination Expert
for Hong Kong, Osaka
posts: 36,828
reviews: 77
11. Re: Tokyo and Karuizawa

Minimum transfer time between Karuizawa and Nikko is just over two hours. You transfer at Omiya which is just north of central Tokyo. Whether it's worth the time and effort is something for you to decide. You could also opt for Nikko as a day trip from Tokyo.

Hong Kong, China
posts: 174
reviews: 13
12. Re: Tokyo and Karuizawa

Thanks Sammyfloyd

Btw is the Suica card similar to the HK Octupus card?

Illinois
Destination Expert
for Chicago, Illinois
posts: 33,636
reviews: 66
13. Re: Tokyo and Karuizawa

Suica - https://www.jreast.co.jp/e/pass/suica.html

Hong Kong, China
Destination Expert
for Hong Kong, Osaka
posts: 36,828
reviews: 77
14. Re: Tokyo and Karuizawa

Yes, Suica and Octopus are basically used the same way. If you have any remaining balance left, you can return the card at a JR station to claim any unused credit plus the card's 500 Yen deposit back. Be sure to use up all your balance beforehand, or you will be assessed a maximum 210 Yen handling charge.

Tokyo, Japan
posts: 157
15. Re: Tokyo and Karuizawa

With a JR Kanto Pass, Fuji Five Lakes, Izu Peninsula or Kamakura could also be your chioce. For the last two, you would not expect koyo, though.

https:/…category05

http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2014_when.html

Hong Kong, China
Destination Expert
for Hong Kong, Osaka
posts: 36,828
reviews: 77
16. Re: Tokyo and Karuizawa

If you decide to head toward Izu or Hakone, just make sure you understand that you cannot use Tokaido Shinkansen with the Kanto Area Pass.

Edited: 10:42 pm, July 25, 2013
Hong Kong, China
posts: 174
reviews: 13
17. Re: Tokyo and Karuizawa

Hi all

Refreshing this thread, now that I understand Karuizawa is indeed quite a small place and places of interest can prob be seen in a day, Iam now thinking of making most of the JR Kanto Pass by going to Ueda which is just a couple of stations away from Karuizawa on the Nagano Shinkasen line. Is this place worth visiting? Again I'm justing looking for beautiful natural scenary, old town style-esque.

We are thinking of starting early-ish on our third day so hopefully we would have enough time to see places, as I understand most of the places worth visiting at Ueda is conveniently near the train station. So any input from the experts would again be most appreciated. Many thanks.

Tokyo, Japan
posts: 157
18. Re: Tokyo and Karuizawa

First of all, Ueda is not in the JR Kanto Pass area.

https:/…category04

You would need at least a little money (850 JPY) if you decide to use a local line (not Shinkansen). A simple connection would be to take a Shinano-Tetsudo.

shinanorailway.co.jp/rail-info/time-table/do…

(in page 5: 6:21am軽井沢-7:11am上田, for example).

Here is an English leaflet of Ueda.

http://www.ueda-cb.gr.jp/english.pdf

Major tourist attractions are loacated at the city center and Bessho-Onsen area.

https:/…

http://naganoken.net/besho/

http://www.bessho-spa.jp/

http://www.bessho-onsen.jp/

http://www.bessho-onsen.com/

They are connected with Besso-sen. It would be just a 570 JPY ride in 1/2 hr.

uedadentetsu.com/timetable/timetable_besshos…

(7:23上田-7:51別所温泉, for example).

Beautiful natural scenery would be enjoyed either at Sugadaira(菅平) or Utsukushigahara(美ヶ原). They are at the north and south edges of the Ueda city.

…nagano.jp/hp/…20100218150557344.html

http://www.bessho-spa.jp/sight/tableland.html

Cosmos field would be in season.

…nagano.jp/hp/sys/20091103000001224.html

…nagano.jp/hp/sys/20090915094546040.html

Old town style-esque...

tripadvisor.jp/…REVIEWS

http://www.kitamuki-kannon.com/kannon/

If you decide to go back to Tokyo in daytime, you can take a southern route: Komoro-Kobuchizawa-Shinjuku (they are in the JR Kanto Pass area). On the way, you would enjoy mountain views: Yatsugatake, Minami-Alps, and Mt Fuji.

Hong Kong, China
posts: 174
reviews: 13
19. Re: Tokyo and Karuizawa

Dear LuisJp

Thanks very much for your informative reply. I'm a little confused as I thought the JR Kanto Pass includes the Nagano Shinkasen Line, which includes the Ueda stop/station. Tokyo being the first station and ending with Nagano as the terminus ?

Hong Kong, China
Destination Expert
for Hong Kong, Osaka
posts: 36,828
reviews: 77
20. Re: Tokyo and Karuizawa

JR Kanto Area Pass includes a portion of the Nagano Shinkansen but not the entire line. As the JR Kanto Area coverage map shows, you can go as far as Saku-Daira. Beyond Saku-Daira to the next stop at Ueda, you will have to pay additional charges.