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  #1  
Old 04-16-2012, 09:12 AM
Vonnie Vonnie is offline
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Visiting Tokyo, any orchid nurseries or gardens I should visit?
Default Visiting Tokyo, any orchid nurseries or gardens I should visit?

I'll be in Tokyo next month and I was wondering if anyone had any recommendations for orchid places to visit. I know we'll be visiting the gardens, but I'm also wanting to visit a place more tailored to orchids.
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  #2  
Old 04-17-2012, 12:05 AM
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WhiteRabbit WhiteRabbit is offline
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Ooo - how exciting! I can't help you out, but here's a - hopefully someone else might have suggestions for you.
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  #3  
Old 04-17-2012, 03:38 AM
catwalker808 catwalker808 is offline
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Tokyo is a big city. Where will you be staying, what hotel, how long? The city is served by excellent, clean & safe public transportation. The JR (Japan Railways) Yamanote Line forma a complete loop around the major metro area. The JR Chuo Line intersects the circle, going across, west to east. Numerous subway lines criss cross the city.

I recommend you get a copy of Frommers Guide to Tokyo. It will give you a good background on the city, customs, interesting things to do, see & eat.

If it's your first visit, the guide will give you a good way to prioritize your time. If you like gardens, I suggest these, in this order: the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace; Hamarikyu Gardens; Meiji Jingu Shrine & Gardens; and Shinjuku Koen.

On a tour, you would have an overall view of the outside & moats of the Imperial Palace. You would have to go on your own to walk the Imperial Palace East Gardens. It's a nice combination of part of a castle & some inner gardens.

Hamarikyu Gardens is 3 short blocks from the famous Tsukiji Wholesale fish markets. (you don't have to go to the auction at 3 in the morning. Anytime in the morning before noon gives you an exciting flavor of the place). Don't ride the local trains or subways between 8 & 9 am. They literally have packers at each car to push people in. You get in, thinking: "Thank goodness, I'm the last passenger who could possibly fit into this car!" Then they lean on & push in 12 more.

Hamarikyu Gardens consists of gardens, traditional structures, viewing decks mixed in among rock lined ocean tidal ponds.

Meiji Jingu is the grand daddy of shrines in Tokyo, where 350 thousand people visit on New Year's Eve & one million on New Year's Day. May should be beautiful. A tour would probably just take you to the shrine. You'd need to make your own time to visit the adjoining gardens.

Shinjuku Koen is the largest, about 250 m x 400 m. It has cherry trees (which won't be in bloom) open & wooded areas, small bridges over ponds with plantings of irises (some of which may be in bloom in late May).

Ueno Park is a busy place (also with a number of homeless). Next to the park is the must see Japan National Museum, with 3 large buildings housing fascinating antiquities, historical & cultural artifacts & exhibits. In Ryogoku is the Tokyo-Edo Museum ... a fascinating interactive depiction of historical Japan & Tokyo to modern times. Many gardens & museums are closed Mondays.

And go to Asakusa to see the new Sky Tree Building. It will be opening in May, so expect huge crowds. When you look up, lean against a building or fence, or you get dizzy & fall over.

For your original question. Tokyo doesn't really have orchid nurseries in the city. Suwada Nursery is the closest, in Ichikawa town, about 9 stops east from Akihabara Station on the JR Chuo Train Line (15-20 minutes). The owner brothers, Munekazu & Koji, speak excellent English. You will have to take a cab from the train station to the nursery.

Pardon the lengthy reply. You asked the wrong question.
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Old 04-17-2012, 06:10 PM
Vonnie Vonnie is offline
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Visiting Tokyo, any orchid nurseries or gardens I should visit?
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First of all, I have to thank you immensely for the sheer amount of information you provided!

Iíll be staying in Edogawa for 7 nights. I know it is a distance from the usual hustle and bustle, but I was planning on getting a Suica pass and taking the train everywhere and for everything. Iíll be near the Nishikasai station on the Tokyo Metro Tozai line.

I was trying to get a copy of the little Tokyo subway guide book, but itís sold out everywhere and used copies are selling for $50 or more!* Iíll definitely look into picking up the Frommers guide, Iíve heard nothing but good things about it.

This will be my first visit, so Iím looking to do a bit of everything. I wonít be leaving the Tokyo area except for a trip out to either Mt. Fuji or Kamakura. This way, I will have to make a second or third trip in the future to see Kyoto, Osaka, and the rest of the country.

I had Shinjuku Koen and Meiji on my list already, really looking forward to seeing both. I also heard about the new Sky Tree building, so exciting! Itís a shame that itíll be opening up after I leave, but Iím still going to check it out!

Is the nursery in Ishikawa very far from the station? I really do want to visit there, especially if there wonít be as much of a problem with the language. Do they have a website or email so that I could contact them ahead of time?

Once again, thank you for all that insightful information. Iím going to print it out and take it with me!
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Old 04-17-2012, 10:55 PM
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Here is the web address:

http://www.roy.hi-ho.ne.jp/suwada-orchid/eindex.htm
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Old 04-18-2012, 11:16 AM
Vonnie Vonnie is offline
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Thanks! I'm definitely going to pay them a visit!
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Old 04-19-2012, 04:59 AM
catwalker808 catwalker808 is offline
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I assumed you would be on the WEST side of Tokyo. But you're way outside to the EAST ... which brings you much closer to the nursery than I thought. Your subway might even connect to the train line from the east rather than heading toward Tokyo & making a u turn.. With Tokyo at the center of the clock, Shinjuku is about 10 o'clock, you are at 4 o'clock & the nursery is about 2 o'clock.

I assume you will not be able to buy anything at the nursery. The owners are very nice & friendly people, but please remember that they are a nursery & very busy.

The Edo-Tokyo Museum is at Ryogoku station,on the train line back from the nursery. Akihabara Station is an easy station, with Electric Town right outside the station. 2-3 blocks of electronics stores. Even just going to Yodobashi Camera (right outside the station's street level gate) is a department store with 4 floors of the most incredible assortment of electronics that you will ever see.

On another day, you should go about 7:30 to Tsukiji, then walk to Hamarikyu Gardens (open at 9:30 or 10) then take a train or subway to Meiji Jinju. Unless you really need to go there, don't get off at Shinjuku Station. It's really busy & confusing & 3.6 million people go through the station every day. If you have to go there, stand out of the way & read the signs carefully (in English).

Many people can speak a little English, many cannot. Get a small English-Japanese dictionary. Sometimes people can read more easily than they can hear English.

Last edited by catwalker808; 04-19-2012 at 11:29 PM..
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Old 04-19-2012, 10:59 PM
Vonnie Vonnie is offline
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I was hoping to be able to stay closer to the west side of Tokyo, but beggars can't be choosers!

It's a shame I won't be able to bring an actual plant home, but I'm hoping to maybe pick up some supplies and tips from them. Hence the wanting to contact them before showing up at their door.

Electronics are right up my alley. I might need to bring a second suitcase if my shopping gets out of hand!
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