As of March 13, passengers traveling between the Narita International Airport and Tokyo Station downtown will reduce traveling time considerably when they take the new Narita Special Express train.\ The nonstop ride betweeen the airport terminal's lower level and central Tokyo will take 55 minutes and will eliminate the bus ride from the airport to the Narita railroad station, which took 25 minutes. The fare for the new express has yet to be announced.East Japan Railways, which has spent $214 million on new cars and additional and improved track to create the express, predicts that rail passengers will increase tenfold, to 3,000 a day.

After reaching Tokyo Station, each express will continue to one of three other destinations: the city of Yokohama south of the capital; the Shinjuku section of Tokyo, and the Ikebuku section.

The Airport Limousine Bus service will continue operations. The bus, which costs $21 each way, handles 40 percent of all airport travelers. The ride takes 80 to 110 minutes between Narita and downtown.

Another way of getting into the city is aboard the Keisei Skyliner express train service, which requires a six-minute shuttle bus ride and a 60-minute train journey to Tokyo's Keisei Uno Station for $13, one way.

Travelers can also take a taxi for about $154 to central Tokyo or a 30-minute helicopter to Haneda Airport close to the city for $139 and then limousine bus downtown, for about $10, or taxi, $30.


To create a new art and cultural center, Rome did not erect a modern building like the Pompidou Center in Paris.

Rather, the city successfully adapted a 108-year-old edifice. It is the Palazzo dell'Esposizione (Exhibition Palace), 194 Via Nazionale, which first opened in 1883 as a sumptuous setting for art shows.

Long underused, the building has been restored and altered during the last few years, and designated by the city as an art and cultural center.

The facade, in the eclectic architecture of the late 19th century, was cleaned of a century's grime, and the interior, with three vast exhibition floors, remodeled and modernized.

The first shows are displaying Roman art of the 1960s: "Beyond Painting" - meaning collages and works in wood, fabrics and other materials - until Feb. 2; and "150 Watercolors by Russian Artists, 1900-1930," from the Pushkin Museum in Moscow, until Feb. 20.

The gleamingly rejuvenated Exhibition Palace now includes a cafeteria, a rooftop restaurant and a bookshop.

The museum is open 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily except Tuesday. Admission is $10.70; childen and senior citizens, half price.


A record 5.7 million people visited the Eiffel Tower, France's most popular tourist attraction, in 1990. Its elevators whisked more than 15,000 visitors a day to a height of 1,040 feet for a panoramic view over Paris, said the company that runs the 102-year-old tower.


A team of archeologists, architects, civil engineers and masons on Rhodes, the largest of Greece's Dodecanese Islands, has begun restoring the walled medieval city of Rhodes.

Historic buildings in the old section, including some from the Turkish period (1523-1912), and the 14th-century fortifications built by the Knights Hospitalers are being restored.