RUGBY WORLD CUP 2019

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RUGBY WORLD CUP 2019

Wallabies “Once in a Lifetime Journey”

japan

From September 20th until November 2nd 2019, Japan will stage the first ever Rugby World Cup to take place in Asia. For those considering coming to Japan to support the Australian Wallabies, we’d like to offer information on what weather to expect during the tournament, how to access the venues and also local sightseeing recommendations. This will not just be a ‘once in every 4 years’ kind of trip, this will be a ‘Once in a Lifetime Journey’ to cherish.


QUALIFYING POOLS

MATCH 1 VS FIJI

September 21st (SUN)
Sapporo Dome, Hokkaido

①ACCESS TO THE STADIUM

If you’re heading to the venue from downtown Sapporo, it’s best to take the subway. From JR Sapporo Station, it’s a 13 minute ride to Fukuzumi Station which is also the terminus. After alighting, take exit 3 and you’ll reach Sapporo Dome after a 10 minute walk. For those flying into Hokkaido on the day of the match, the Sapporo Toshin bus service will run to Sapporo Dome at 15 minute intervals throughout the day with the trip taking approximately 45 minute

RECOMMENDED SIGHTSEEING EXPERIENCES

One of the most famous sports venues in Japan is the home of the Nippon Ham Fighters baseball club. It is worth a visit alone to Sapporo to watch the automatic transformation of the dome from baseball diamond to rectangular rugby field. Before and after the game Sapporo has so much to see and do. The night life and food in Susukino should not be missed and Sapporo is famous for its crab, beer and ramen. What a great combination. Don’t miss Nijo Ichiba for fresh seafood or for amazing ramen. No trip to Sapporo is
complete without a visit to the Sapporo Beer museum and eat like a Mongol Warlord with a feast of Genghis Khan BBQ. Drop by Old Town Hokkaido to go back in time and for one of the best night views in Japan head up to Mt Moiwa.

SPECIAL NOTE – Don’t forget you may want to visit Kamaishi on the east coast of the main island. Kamaishi is one of the cities destroyed on the earthquake and subsequent tsunami of 2011. Kamaishi is a beautiful town with wonderful people who will make you feel so welcome as the host of the Fiji vs Uruguay match on the 25th Sept at the newly built Unosumai Memorial Stadium.

WEATHER CONDITIONS TO EXPECT

The tail end of September in Sapporo sees highs of under 20 degrees and lows of 14 degrees with a distinct feeling of autumn in the air. The high pressure systems in the Pacific start to weaken at this time of year causing changeable weather and the potential for a lot of rain.


QUALIFYING POOLS

MATCH 2 VS WALES

September 29th (SUN)
Tokyo Stadium, Tokyo

②ACCESS TO THE STADIUM

The most convenient way to get to Tokyo Stadium is by train. During large scale events like this one, some of the rapid and semi-rapid trains make a special stop at Tobitakyu, which is the closest station to the stadium. This allows you to arrive within 20 minutes from Shinjuku Station on the Keio Line without requiring a transfer.

RECOMMENDED SIGHTSEEING EXPERIENCES

As you take the train out on the Keio Line to Tobitakyu Station from the hectic and fast paced downtown area you will pass through some of the nicest suburbs in Tokyo. West Tokyo is famous for some of the busiest urban lanscapes with famous names such as Shibuya, Harajuku and Shinjuku, home to the station that sees 3 million people a day pass through it. In the midst of all this you can still find Japanese serenity in Shinjuku Gyoen Park or Meiji Shrine. Between Tokyo and the stadium is one of the recommended places in Japan, Kichijoji. A cool and funky suburb and home to Harmonica Yokocho. “Yokocho” literally means “side alley” or “street” and are synonymous with Japan. A collection of all types of wonderful homestyle eating establishments where can have you own “culinary crawl” from shop to shop. Other highlights amongst just too many to list here are Golden Gai just near Kabukicho and Ebisu Yokocho, famous for being taken over by Masterchef Australia in 2017.

WEATHER CONDITIONS TO EXPECT

September in Tokyo sees average temperatures of 22 degrees and lows of 19 degrees along with calm conditions. However, with humidity still running at 70%, the last remnants of summer can still be felt at times and it can be a little sticky. Precipitation is also heaviest at this time of year so it’s a good idea to have some wet weather gear ready for both match day and any sightseeing.


QUALIFYING POOLS

MATCH 3 VS URUGUAY

October 5th (SUN)
Oita Stadium (Sports Park), Oita Prefecture

③ACCESS TO THE STADIUM

Getting to the stadium in Oita Sports Park requires taking a bus then a short walk. From JR Oita Station, buses leave from platform 3 or platform 6 and run to ‘Oita Sport Park East’, the nearest bus stop. The trip should take between 35 to 45 minutes and there will also be shuttle buses operating from JR Beppu Station during the event.

RECOMMENDED SIGHTSEEING EXPERIENCES

A lot of Aussies think of Japan as being the area between Tokyo and Osaka (the Golden Route) or a ski resort in Hokkaido. Japan is incredibly diverse and around every corner is a new adventure. Welcome to “Hot Springs Heaven – Oita”. A truly unique Japanese experience awaits you. Downtown Miyakomachi is a great place to start and grab some local dishes. Being off the beaten track people from Oita pride themselves on their hospitality and it is not just Kobe that you find good beef. Oita has some of the best. Enjoy the outdoor hot springs at Suginoi with magnificent views over Beppu Bay. One of the “only in Japan” experiences is Jigoku Mushi – beautiful seafood and vegetables steamed in the natural hot springs. Don’t get caught out with staying away from Oita as you will be spending all your time travelling and not enjoying all that Oita has to offer. Trekking on the Kunisaki Peninsula and a very tasty Japanese BBQ at the newly opened Yakiniku Yokocho! Ask a local, they will love to help you.

WEATHER CONDITIONS TO EXPECT

October in Oita sees cooler air flowing into the local area with average temperatures below 20 degrees. However, warm air can also cover the region at times pushing daytime highs above 30 degrees. The weather is generally stable with few rainy days, but as it’s also typhoon season, be aware that heavy rain can also hit the region.


QUALIFYING POOLS

MATCH 4 VS GEORGIA

October 11th (FRI)
Shizuoka Stadium Ecopa, Shizuoka Prefecture

④ACCESS TO THE STADIUM

For those who wish to access Ecopa Stadium using public transportation, JR Aino Station is the closest station and from there it’s a 15 minute walk to the venue. If you’re coming from Tokyo to Aino Station, get off at JR Kakegawa Station then take a Hamamatsu bound train on the Tokkaido main line and you’ll arrive in 5 minutes. If coming from Nagoya, at Hamamatsu Station change to the Okitsu bound train at on the main Tokkaido line and you’ll arrive at Aino Station in approximately 20 minutes.

RECOMMENDED SIGHTSEEING EXPERIENCES

Japan has 47 prefectures, each with their own individual highlights. Shizuoka is the spiritual home of one of Japan’s biggest exports – green tea. The meticulously manicured tea plantations sit at the base of Mt Fuji and make for one of those holiday photos you have to see to believe. Just over an hour by bullet train from Tokyo, Shizuoka sits between the coastline and Mt Fuji. Kakegawa is the station you want which is closest to the stadium and is famous as a green tea town. Do not miss Honjin Dori – a collection of little restaurants and bars just 8 mins walk north of the station. Shizuoka is famous for its oden, a mixture of different foods in a steaming broth. Other must do’s are the Kakegawa Bird Park and the Mishima Skywalk for incredible views of Mt Fuji.

WEATHER CONDITIONS TO EXPECT

The weather in October in Shizuoka Prefecture sees average temperatures of 18 degrees and lows of 14 degrees and with little temperature variation between day and night, conditions are very comfortable. However, according to meteorological data taken from early October 2017, which corresponds to the same time of year the match will be played, days above 30 degrees are possible and measures to avoid heatstroke should be considered.


IF THEY PROGRESS TO THE KNOCK OUT MATCHES…

SEMI-FINAL AND FINAL

October 27th (SUN) & November 2nd (Sat)
Yokohama International Stadium, Kanagawa Prefecture

⑤ACCESS TO THE STADIUM

For those wishing to head to Yokohama International Stadium using public transportation, train is the best option. The 3 closest stations are JR Shin Yokohama, the Yokohama Municipal subway and JR Kozukue Station which require a further 14 minute, 12 minute or 7 minute walk respectively to the stadium. If coming from Tokyo to the venue, it takes 20 minutes on the bullet train to Shin Yokohama Station or, if travelling by regular train, take the JR Keihin Tohoku Line to Higashi Kanagawa Station (approximately 35 minutes) then transfer to a Hachioji bound train on the Yokohama Line and you’ll arrive in 10 minutes.

RECOMMENDED SIGHTSEEING EXPERIENCES

Yokohama is truly a wonderful city with easy access, great food and excellent accommodation. In 1868 when Commodore Perry sailed into Yokohama Bay to open up the country after 100sof years of isolation it started the Meiji Revolution and the transformation of Japan. Parts of Yokohama have a distinctive western feel and if you are feeling nostalgic go and have a beer and a meal at the Yokohama Country and Athletic Club near Yamate Station. The oldest expat club in Japan and there is conjecture with Keio University that this is where rugby was born in Japan. If Australia finds itself playing in Yokohama on either of these weekends there is plenty for you to do and see. Here are a few examples for Yokohama.
1. Check out the unique experience of the Ramen Museum near Shin Yokohama Station. A tribute to the different types of the noodle dish from all over Japan set in a throwback to the 1950s and 60s.
2. Minato Mirai – harbour of the Future and the area around it. Great shopping and check out the view from the Landmark building. On a clear day you can see Mt Fuji.

WEATHER CONDITIONS TO EXPECT

In Yokohama over the course of the semi finals and final, the average temperature will be 15 degrees with lows of 12 degrees and you can definitely feel the coolness of autumn. However, daytime temperatures usually rise to 18 or 19 degrees making it feel very comfortable.