Preparing for Visits to Japan by Family Members With Health Issues

Source: Gaijin Pot
Preparing for Visits to Japan by Family Members With Health Issues

I love seeing my parents when they come over yearly, and it is so good to be able to visit with them, even just for a week or two. However, having my parents over, or rather preparing to have my parents come over can often be quite a stressful time. It requires careful planning, consideration and a big drop of realism.

As I age, of course, so have my parents. As a result, they now suffer from a certain degree of physical impairment. My father has arthritis and heart issues, my mother is partially sighted. Despite these setbacks, they, of course, want to see as much of Japan as they can. So, in planning trips and excursions, I have developed a heightened awareness of just how tough getting around Japan, and Osaka, in particular, can be for someone with a physical disability.

It’s no secret that traveling Japan with mobility and health issues can be simplified with a little planning and research. Unfortunately, a number of the older monuments, temples and shrines are simply off limits. This isn’t necessarily because of any lack of effort on the part of the Japanese government, often times, simply, it is down to the realities of geography. Take Fushimi Inari, one of Kyoto’s most famous shrines. It’s literally at the top of a small mountain, so installing an escalator or a wheelchair access passageway isn’t exactly practical.

There’s a lot to consider when relatives come to visit, but especially when you have parents, aunts and uncles or friends with special mobility/health needs, there’s even more to be aware of. So, here are some vital pointers to consider when planning a visit to Japan for family and friends.

Map out your route ahead of time.

For most travel plans, I tend to craft a rough itinerary …continue reading