Japnese Travel Tips
Whenever most English-speaking foreigners arrive at a new destination, they never even give a thought to Japanese maps. They instantly ask for an English map and continue on their way. But asking for a Japanese map can help you find your way and save time as well.
Whenever I arrive at a new destination, I will ask for both a Japanese and English version of the same map. I can already hear you saying "But I don't know how to read Japanese". But you don't really need to. If you have both versions of the same map, you can compare the two maps and find the common points of interest on both maps.
How can that help? If you find yourself somewhere where there are no English signs, an English map will not be very helpful at all. However, if you have both maps and have found the common points on the maps, you can compare the Japanese on the map to the Japanese on site and hopefully be able find it on the map. If you are able to find it on the Japanese map, it should then be an easy cross-reference to find the spot on the English map. Plus, I will often look at the Japanese map and try to remember some of the important Kanji of my destinations. This can often expedite your search on site.
Anyway, the next time you are in Japan, don't ignore those Japanese maps. They just may save you time!