To visit Japan in a typhoon season – Part 1 –
In August of 2014, my friend and I planned to visit an ancient burial mound called “Imashiro-zuka kofun” in Osaka.
We booked a hotel called “Intercontinental Osaka” for two nights, where it is accessible directly from the JR Osaka station through a skybridge.
It was a typhoon season, but we assumed it would be gone within a day if it really hit us during our holidays.
Well, it really hit us, and lingered around Osaka to spoil our plans completely.
“Yodogawa Hanabi Taikai” (Yodogawa Fireworks Display) was scheduled during that weekend, but of course it was cancelled.
The typhoon was strong enough that evacuation orders were issued in some areas in Osaka.
So, we decided to stay around the hotel.
(What else could we do anyway?)
Tips if you plan to visit Japan in a typhoon season
- First of all, you should avoid a typhoon season (July to September: August is the highest), particularly when you only stay for a short period.
Typhoons generally are gone within a day, and not as strong as the one which ruined our holidays, but I feel they are getting stronger and slower every year.
- Book a proper hotel, at least one that you haven’t got to vacate your room after breakfast.
Many cheap hotels lock you out during a certain period of time (like 10:00 – 16:00).
I’m not sure whether you can stay in your room for a whole day in this kind of emergency, but even if it’s possible, probably those cheap accommodations are not very pleasant to spend a day.
Also, they usually don’t have restaurants, so you will have to find somewhere to eat outside.
- It may be wise to refrain from a long-distance travel by public transportation.
As you might already know, trains in Japan are famous for their prompt arrivals and departures.
However, they (especially high-speed train “shinkansen”) do get delayed or stop in a bad weather or for other reasons.This time, I needed to wait for one hour or so to get my shinkansen to go home at the very crowded Shin-Osaka station because nobody was sure how long the trains would be delayed.
It was shown “30 minutes delay” at first on the display, then changed to “One hour delay”.
You may be able to get to your destination by local trains or buses, but of course it takes much more time.
Just for reference, it took me around ten hours to get to Tokyo from Okayama by local trains on a fine day.
By shinkansen, it takes about 3 hours and a half.
By long-distance coach, almost half a day.
We spent most of the time in this room watching TV, animal videos on You Tube (free internet access in the room), reading e-books, etc.
I was playing an iOS game entitled “Dragon’s World”.
The hotel has spa and gym with indoor pool and Jacuzzi, although we didn’t use them.
In the next post, I’ll show you more photos of the hotel and a shopping centre called “Grand Front Osaka” where the hotel is located.
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