Saturday, August 12, 2006

Kyushu or Shikoku?

Two southern islands I'd never been to. Both have beaches. Both have allure. Which to choose?
Travelling by Seishun 18 kippu helped to make that decision. Dirt cheap, but you can only take JR local trains, or at best, JR Rapid or night trains.
The night trains get booked up months in advance. I tried to secure a booking on the Moonlight Nagawa, the best way to get to the tip-top of Kyushu in one 24-hour period, to no avail. Manseki.
So Shikoku it was.

We left pretty early - around 6am, and got our ticket stamped at Yokohama. From there, it was a steady stream of local trains, changing at such hot spots as Atami, Maibara, and Ogaki. Tired around 2pm, we deboarded in Kyoto to get some lunch at an Italian place in the station.

We finally arrived in Takamatsu at around 830 pm, and wandered around searching for the hotel that we had reserved through the Tocoo system. When we finally found the place and tried to assert our rights with our reservation number, the grumpy man at the counter told us it would be impossible. He didn't have our reservation, he claimed. Muri - dame, he said. How rude. Fuck you, Tocoo. Either that, or the guy didn't want to deal with us.

So we walked in to a Toyoko Inn and asked for a room, and behold! They had one for us. We got a single, double use, for about 7000 yen. A great deal, especially for a walk-in! I highly recommend this place - we stayed at Toyoko Inns for the rest of our trip, and were very happy. They have free internet in the lobby, free breakfast in the morning, and the single room is neither cramped as the LP claims nor is the bed a single bed - it's quite a comfortable double, in fact bigger than some of the "semi-doubles" that I've paid for in other business hotels.

By the time we got checked in and accommodated, it was too late to go anywhere for dinner. There's a Lawson right next to the hotel, though, so I got my usual wakame onigiri and made dinner of conbini-fare.

Travelling on the train all day takes it out of you. I slept an exhausted sleep.

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