Narita Stopover

Narita Travel Blog

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I had an 18 hr overnight layover at Narita on my way to Xian; my plan was to go visit the nearby Narita temple.  Arriving at Narita, the line through immigration was very long.  After waiting for 15 minutes one of the agents said the other side was open, and there was no wait at all.  I had found a good rate at the nearby Holiday Inn which is very close to the terminal.  I had just missed the last shuttle by mere minutes and had to wait 30 minutes for the next one (I could have walked it, it turns out).  It was quite warm waiting outside!  After checking into the hotel and inquiring on the shuttle buses into town, I found out I had just missed one, drat again!  There are two shuttle buses that circle between the airport hotels and Narita town itself, taking about an hour.  Another option was to go back to the airport and take the train.  So it was already quite late in the afternoon by the time I arrived at the Naritasan temple.  It was Sunday, so many shops and restaurants were already closed.  I spent awhile wandering around the temple complex, which is huge.  Some parts date back to the 1500s or earlier!  It is supposedly one of the most popular temples in Japan.  At the center is a huge pagoda.  It was soon getting dark, so headed out onto the main street outside the temple to look for a place to eat.  I found a nearby restaurant but should have been warned when it was full of tourists.  I had a quick meal of tempura shrimp and vegetables, and luckily was just able to catch the next shuttle bus back to the hotel (the next one wasn't for another hour!).  It was only 8:30 PM but jetlag was starting to kick in and I called it an early night.
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photo by: ellechic