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Railway Help

Level Contributor
16 posts
Railway Help

Hi everyone, I will be visiting Japan in a fortnight and I am very confused. I am staying at Nara Deer Park, and I will be travelling to Kyoto for autumn leaves at Okoshi-Sanso Garden, Arashiyama Bamboo Groove and Tenryuji Temple, and generally just walking around that area. I have a choice of 2 transport means, by car, or by rail. If I take my rented car, and start from Nara at 8:00 in the morning, I will be dropping my car at Satsueisho-mae Electric Railway Station as parking space is plenty. Then I will proceed to take the train to Arashiyama.

If I take the railway, how long would it take? Is it worth it? Do I need to switch trains? Thanks in advance.

11 replies to this topic
Macau, China
Level Contributor
7,564 posts
21 reviews
1. Re: Railway Help

If you are not renting a car and drive it everywhere, what is the point for you to rent a car?

For Nara to Arashiyama, it takes you 1 hour 15 minutes only with one easy transfer at Kyoto Station. No need to waste the time and money.


Destination Expert
for Fukuoka, Kyushu
Level Contributor
3,239 posts
36 reviews
2. Re: Railway Help

It is best to use the public transportations in the urban areas in Japan. The parking a car is expensive.

Level Contributor
16 posts
3. Re: Railway Help

I will be driving the car from Narita to Nagano on my first day, and from Nara to Tokyo. The railway is too expensive as I have 4 family members, so I chose rental cars as a mean of transport.

So I should find a overnight parking space near my hotel and take the train to Arashiyama?

Macau, China
Level Contributor
7,564 posts
21 reviews
4. Re: Railway Help

Driving from Nara to Tokyo is not fun at all. Seriously. I have tried that and took me whole day. Price is not cheaper as well if you consider tolls and parking and fuel, and traffic jam in large cities.

Instead have you consider buying the JR Pass? And what is your plan?

Destination Expert
for Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
57,887 posts
67 reviews
5. Re: Railway Help

Do you want to do that after a long flight? Are you familiar with driving in Japan? Seriously reconsider your plan. You’re covering a long distance and it’s priced accordingly. Taking the train is so much easier.

Edited: 07 November 2018, 11:11
Level Contributor
16 posts
6. Re: Railway Help

So I should drop my car at Nara and take the JR to Tokyo? I will be staying at Mt.Fuji and visiting Gotemba Factory Outlet, are there transport available? I'm not familiar.

Level Contributor
16 posts
7. Re: Railway Help

My flight to Japan takes 6hrs, and my country is also Right-hand drive so switching over would not be a problem.

Macau, China
Level Contributor
7,564 posts
21 reviews
8. Re: Railway Help

>>I will be staying at Mt.Fuji and visiting Gotemba Factory Outlet, are there transport available?

Take the Narita Express to Shinjuku and change to Express bus to Kawaguchiko at Busta Shinjuku. That is easy and frequent service. There is bus running between Kawaguchiko to Gotemba Outlet as well.

Put your whole plan (including flight arrival and departure time) here and we can sugget more accurately.

Level Contributor
16 posts
9. Re: Railway Help


Arrival at Narita Airport@7:30am.

Take breakfast at airport and rental car pick-up

Drive to Nagano for lunch

Visit Jigokudani Monkey Park.

Staying at ZEN Hotel in Nakano, dinner around hotel.


After breakfast, drive to Togakushi Shrine.

Leave Togakushi Shrine and drive to Kiso Valley for lunch and sightseeing.

Leave Kiso Valley before 5:00pm, drive to Nara

Dinner at Nara

Check-in hotel in Nara Deer Park.

Drop car at overnight car parking


Take the train to Arashiyama Station

Visit Bamboo Forest, Okochi-Sanso Villa for fall foliage, and Tenryuji Temple.

Lunch time around the area.

After lunch, may visit Fushimi Inari Shrine but I am open to other suggestions around Kyoto area, I am travelling with 2 teenagers.

Take the train back to Nara after dinner


Nara deer park in the morning.

Leave Nara, head towards Hakone.

Lunch at Nagoya.

Dinner at Hakone


Whole day at Mt.Fuji, wind-cave and ice-cave


Boat cruise at Lake Aishi.

Gotemba Factory Outlet.

Drive to Tokyo.

Car Drop-off at Ueno station


DisneySea for whole day.


Walk around Tokyo, visit Tokyo Tower


Early flight@10;20am depart from Narita Aiport.

I can change the arrangements, but my hotels and flights are secured and booked.

Thanks in advance.

1 post
1 review
10. Re: Railway Help


I work for the BBC and we are doing a series about nocturnal happenings called Wireless Nights. We are looking for stories about things that have happened on sleeper trains. I saw that you mentioned that you have travelled in sleeper trains in Japan and I wondered if you might have any interesting stories you'd like to share.

Feel free to get in touch with me at Hannah.dean@bbc.co.uk

Many thanks


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