Tokyo Area Travel Tips

Back from hols and am absolutely stuffed.  We went to the Izu Peninsula then back through Tokyo to the Chiba Peninsula not Kochi as planned -- mainly cos we found out the day before we left that the sales period for the cheapo seijunn hachi tickets was over!

Anyway, here are some important tips if you plan to do a short trip out of Tokyo:

* DO NOT visit Chiba ken without accomodation bookings  It is insanely impossible to get into a hotel at the last minute.  We almost had to sleep on the streets but the nice man at like the 10th hotel we went to had a no-show so gave us the room.

* DO visit the Chiba peninsula.  Izu peninsula has a far better reputation for it's scenery, but the bottom of the Chiba peninsula is gorgeous (even if you can't get a hotel room there).

* Travelling without a phone (or internet access) is incredibly hard, especially when you can't find a hotel room and have to do all the searching by foot, with bags and cases.   Also you can't research info on the fly.

* If you have a JR East Pass, make sure the areas you visit are covered by the pass.  From Atami to the bottom of the Izu Peninsula, the train line changes from JR to a private line but they don't tell you (or maybe they do in Japanese but I wasn't listening) so you have to pay $$$.  Also Mt Fuji isn't in the JR East area but is actually JR Central or something... who even know that existed?  I thought it went from JR East to JR West.

* Mt Fuji is pretty but is much more delicious in nabe form, even with strange mystery meat.

* Atami - pretty but slightly run down beach town by day, place where guys ask if they can gangbang you at night!!!!