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Japan 2020 - planning and stuff.

Discussion in 'Japan' started by Donzah, Feb 27, 2019.

  1. ojisan

    ojisan Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    paging @M_G
     
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  2. brissmith

    brissmith Early Days

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    Thank you! Hopefully we can get in at the red warehouse for the main part if our stay (they said they had availability but confirm soon). Another question should we book our ski lessons now for february so we have our spots?
     
  3. travelislife

    travelislife One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Stay in Otaru. It's great. Especially if you like seafood.
     
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  4. M_G

    M_G M_G_ = Make skiing great again Ski Pass: Gold

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    Hi Brissmith,
    Hope you got my last couple of emails with suggestions. Your best bet is to just book Soratobu Usagi online. It's ski in, ski out and your friends can just ski past to pick you up in the morning.
    Cheers, MG

    P.S. Just also sent you a query re your RW booking.
     
  5. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    and dodgy streets
    [​IMG]

    But its so romantic
    [​IMG]

    Especially if you like bleak cold ports
    [​IMG]
     
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  6. Sbooker

    Sbooker One of Us

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    Thanks for the recommendations to stay in Otaru. Any specific recommendations on accommodation? Somewhere near restaurants/beer would be good.
     
  7. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    The canal is a bit of a focus.
    I'm sure you'll find a good airbnb near there.
     
  8. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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  9. smackies

    smackies A Local

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    Otaru. Ugly with octopus balls.
     
  10. Froff Life

    Froff Life A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Get an airbnb, some excellent deals in otaru.
     
  11. Sbooker

    Sbooker One of Us

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    Speaking of beer.:)
    If one pops into a ‘izakaya’ do they have beer on tap just like they do in most countries? And is there different brands/types or foes one brand dominate a particular area? For example is it difficult to get beers other than Sapporo on Hokkaido?
    Or has the whole craft explosion happened in Japan too?
    Sorry about the ignorant Aussie type question. I’d rather embarrass myself on this forum than in a bar in Otaru which is owned by some nice Japanese family.
     
  12. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    You'll often find a couple of draughts on tap.
    Often one will be from a big brewery. Ie Sapporo.
    A craft beer on another tap are increasingly popular.
    Otaru has a bit of a beer culture.
    If you're drinking commercial beer. Try yebisu
     
  13. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Craft beer is huge in Japan.
     
  14. brissmith

    brissmith Early Days

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    Thank you! Yes got it all. I looked up accomm places to try to find their contact details but seems best bet is to book Soratobu Usagi via booking.com. I have a few other questions about Myoko logistics and will email red warehouse directly. So excited it looks like such an awesome place. My son asked if you can just go outside and ski / sled on the snow...errr....yes!!
     
  15. Lucky Pete

    Lucky Pete One of Us

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    An Izkaya is a bar that serves food to go with the drinks, not a restaurant, so always have been on tap which is known as 'nama beeru' (draft beer). Everyone should order drinks too, they dont all need to be alcoholic but if thats not your thing go to a restaurant. Same deal at a Yakatori. Depending where you are its unlikely they will have craft beer on tap too unless is a popular tourist destination etc etc but may have the local beers by the bottle. Understand that smoking is the norm in Izakayas, actually its part of the ambience.
     
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  16. Sbooker

    Sbooker One of Us

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    Are kids (teenagers) welcome?
     
  17. Lucky Pete

    Lucky Pete One of Us

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    You'll generally be fine in main tourist areas and other places probably. Our local place here wont have anyone under 20 and she will berate people who dont order drinks, its epic theatre some nights. :)
     
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  18. M_G

    M_G M_G_ = Make skiing great again Ski Pass: Gold

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    Culturally, probably not. But I've been taking my kids into them since they were babies without anyone batting an eyelid. They can be quite smoky FYI.
     
  19. LDJ

    LDJ Addicted Ski Pass: Silver

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    I’m probably just weird but the smokey & meaty atmosphere is one of the reasons I love them even though I’m normally violently against smoking near me. I found an awesome one block from prince tower hotel in Sapporo on the first floor. The lady was amazing as was atmosphere, Japanese Business people and food
     
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  20. M_G

    M_G M_G_ = Make skiing great again Ski Pass: Gold

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    Agreed but if you're a relative Japan newb some won't like it.

    The local ones far away from the tourist scene are the best. I went to a small town seafood izakaya in Kyushu a couple of weeks ago. Freaking awesome.
     
  21. Froff Life

    Froff Life A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Smaller izyakayas generally just have the usual Asahi and Kirin on tap. Sapporo is pretty big on Hokkaido as you'd imagine. Larger shopping centres and some conbinis will stock a small amount of craft beer. Japan freaking LOVE beer on tap, with some restaurants using cool pouring machines that inject the beer head separately so it's perfect LOL
     
  22. ojisan

    ojisan Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    A fair number of convenience stores stock craft beer...
    The one I found that was the best was the conbini that is on the station platform of the hankyu train station where the inlaws live... widest and most impressive selection of all conbini's
     
  23. Froff Life

    Froff Life A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Was it a chain conbini? (Lawson, 711, Family Mart) or a private one?
     
  24. Tanuki

    Tanuki A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    On out last trip in 2017 I found a greater variety of beers in most of the conbini in Tokyo and regional train stations.
     
  25. ojisan

    ojisan Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    It was called Seijo Ishii... they are a supermarket chain that has small conbini type supermarkets at stations.

    https://www.japanallover.com/2012/03/seijo-ishii/

    Have a look at the beer selection in the photo of this link
     
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  26. Froff Life

    Froff Life A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Not a bad little selection there! Shame there aren't any Seijo Ishii on Hokkaido :(
     
  27. ojisan

    ojisan Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    I should add... that article looks a few years old.... the ones I've been to, there is a much bigger selection of japanese craft beer
     
  28. ojisan

    ojisan Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    found a much better photo that shows what the beer selection is like and the sort of japanese craft beer you can find there

     
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  29. Froff Life

    Froff Life A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Have seen selections like that in Tokyo and bigger supermarkets in Sapporo. I'll keep an eye out for Seijo Ishii next Japan trip :)
     
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  30. Lucky Pete

    Lucky Pete One of Us

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    The A- Coop here in Hakuba got a remodel last year and now has a fine selection of beers and wine. Good times! Grab 2 of each beer and enjoy the ones you like and give the others to your mates.
     
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  31. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    So i won't have to put up with the BigU tune down the road?
     
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  32. Lonepeak

    Lonepeak Hard Yards

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    A0E99231-3A93-4D23-9C67-6B3EAE69B4BB.jpeg
    Sonia Hotel is nice with canal view - wonderful when it’s nasty outside.
    Re: beer...the Otaru beer house along the canal has traditional German beers and food. Recent summer visit they even had a seasonal Stuttgart beer (lived there 3 years).
    Some small mini restaurants off the covered shopping road were very good. An excellent Italian place, and a sushi place with a high energy/entertaining owner. Overall a cool town. Smallish ski areas in area were only mildly amusing though.
     

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  33. Sbooker

    Sbooker One of Us

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    Thanks for the tips.
     
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  34. Lucky Pete

    Lucky Pete One of Us

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    Indeed. Its drilled into my head now :(
     
  35. Crispy013

    Crispy013 One of Us

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    Or Delicia (formally Apple mart) is one of ours faves. Generally not too busy either.
     
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  36. skipperlee

    skipperlee Hard Yards

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    how busy is nozawa generally in mid feb ? im debating if I should travel down from iwate area for the last few days of my trip and board around nozawa/togari/madarao but based in nozawa. #dontlikequeues
     
  37. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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  38. Medicine_Shoes

    Medicine_Shoes Early Days

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    I was in Nozawa first week of Feb this year. The busiest day I was on the slopes was a Sunday and the queues were no more than 5-10 mins. During the week you could get on every lift straight away with no waiting. This was during CNY too.
     
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  39. Lucky Pete

    Lucky Pete One of Us

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    Yes a much nicer place and open late!
     
  40. shabu_shabu

    shabu_shabu One of Us

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    Hokousha tengoku. "Unfortunately it's not today". LOL
    Trouble is the All Blacks are very popular in Japan (and they have been working on it). Aside from the Cherry Blossoms the locals will be mainly cheering for the ABs, as if they needed any extra advantage.
     
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  41. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Problem?
     
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  42. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    Says the Kiwi

    Actually that’s a great Ad.

    Just looking for options for the Qtr Finals (not got tix and will be in Hirafu) - with the announcement of a fan zone at Odori Park in Sapporo we are booking accom in Sapporo City for that weekend! Looking forward to it!!
     
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  43. M_G

    M_G M_G_ = Make skiing great again Ski Pass: Gold

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    Don't base yourself in Nozawa. Base yourself in Iiyama. 15-20 mins to each resort. Plus there's also Ryuoo, Kijimidaira, Kurohime and others.
     
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  44. Sbooker

    Sbooker One of Us

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    Is there plenty of parking in Harifu area? Is it realistic to expect to be able to drive to the Main Street area for a night out? I don’t think there is a shuttle to town from where we are staying?
    Oh and is parking free?
     
  45. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Why would you want to head to Nozawa from Iwate? You would have to track back nearly all the way to Tokyo then back out west to do that. You would be bypassing quite a few ski areas in Yamagata, Miyagi & Fukushima that are on the way to Tokyo. If you wanted an Onsen type village stop off at Zao Onsen on the way south. Or else Alts Bandai and nearby areas.
     
  46. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty! Ski Pass: Gold

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    Hirafu is busy.
    And more so since so many people hire cars now.

    Parking is tricky, especially at night for dinner. People are always illegally parking in my street. Warnings and fines are given from time to time.
    Some restaurants have a couple of parking spaces, but not usually the ones in the upper village.

    I’d suggest parking up near the lifts in the car parks you would use to ski. Then walking down the hill to dinner. It’s safer than trying to find a park close.
     
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  47. Shrike

    Shrike Hard Yards

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    The only night I got hammered in Hakuba was because I went to an izyakayas in Ecoland after visiting Tony at White horse. They had signs saying that they were a drinking bar that served food and not a restaurant. Were impressed with the amount of drinks I ordered :s though it was a mistake having that much shochu straight. Lesson learnt, have never had a problem ordering drinks anywhere in Japan tho, I love the fact that with izyakayas if you want more food you just get more as you drink :) as the portions are just right
     
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  48. Sbooker

    Sbooker One of Us

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    Oh. And I’ll be sure to take cash but is it fine to pay for ski hire (for example) with card?
     
  49. Tanuki

    Tanuki A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yes, in most cases. There's many more eftpos terminals and ATM's then even five years ago. I'd email ahead just to check though.
     
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  50. Any

    Any One of Us

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    in/around Niseko? yes.
    tho ive had some troubles with companies having to call up their provider to accept international cards at places with less western target audience.