Travel Books for Japan

Lonely Planet Japan (Country Travel Guide)

The best travel guide on the market, this was my original book when I first started travelling to Japan.

Full maps, hotel reviews, sites and more. Great instructions on how to get to many tourist destinations. A must buy for the first traveller.




Japanese (Lonely Planet Phrasebooks)

This is absolutely the best travel book I own and I recommend anyone going to Japan buy it. Even if you’ve learnt Japanese in school the phrases here are content that you may need (or hope you don’t!) that you’re unlikely to have learnt in a formal setting. Topics include standard traveler fare like how to use transport, how to order food and how to ask for directions. Unique and extremely useful is information like how to get help at the post office or the doctor, how to decline sexual advances and how to ask for legal help if you hit trouble!



Lonely Planet Kyoto (City Travel Guide)

A detailed city guide for Kyoto from Lonely Planet. If you own the Japan book you may find limited new information but if you’re planning on spending a lot of time in Kyoto then this is a good buy.

Instructions are included on how to find a number of geisha related spots in Gion, Pontocho and more.




The Rough Guide to JapanĀ 

Another high quality travel book for Japan, the writing is significantly better quality than the Lonely Planet and a recent up to date edition has some great content.






Frommer’s Japan

Some older readers I know prefer the Frommer’s guides and this book contains a lot of useful cultural information like etiquette on how to eat and bathe in Japan.

Very useful for those who wish to take care culturally as well as good tourist information.




Old Kyoto: The Updated Guide to Traditional Shops, Restaurants, and Inns

Kyoto can be extremely confusing particularly if you’re wandering in the old parts of town around the geisha districts. Finding traditional stores for geisha fanatics like fans, makeup, bugs and traditional streets can be a nightmare when you realise that Japanese streets are not numbered in order! This is a wonderful book for the genuine geisha tourist looking to see old fashioned shops and businesses in Kyoto.