Off to Japan

My time in Singapore is coming to a close, and I’ll be moving back to the U.S. Before I head home, I decided to take a quick trip to Japan, as I have only had a chance to see Narita (the airport in Tokyo), and figured I would do well to better explore the country. My trip is a short one, only 6-ish days, and I have chosen to visit Kyoto and Tokyo.

Before flying out here I was given the good advice of getting a Rail Pass. This can only be purchased outside of Japan and then redeemed when you arrive. The timing of my trip forced me to take United Airlines, but I was fortunate enough to have enough frequent flyer miles that I was able to be upgraded to Business Class. This makes the flight go a lot smoother and quicker. One thing I am amazed at is how backward the American flights are. Although the plane was a Boeing 777 the “entertainment” system was something out of the 80’s. I hate to gripe, but Singapore Air and Thai Air have on-demand movies with about 1000 choices on their international flights. On this flight we had a choice of 3 movies that were not on-demand. Fortunately I had a few tv shows saved up on my mac, so I was happy.

I landed in Tokyo, made my way through immigration and quickly got my bag off the luggage belt. It did take me a few minutes to figure out where to pick up my Rail Pass, but once that was done I hopped on the “Narita Express” to Tokyo station to make a connection to Kyoto. It takes about an hour to go from the airport to Tokyo station. I was also lucky enough to board a Shinkansen train to Kyoto (a bullet train). The ride took about 2 hours, and it was a very smooth ride. Metro North in Connecticut feels like an off-road ride comparatively. I arrived in Kyoto in the evening, and after checking into my hotel, which is located right at (in?) the station I walked around and found a small sushi restaurant to eat at.

View of the Kyoto train station from my room
View of the Kyoto train station from my room