Help with itinerary please!
Replies: 4 - Last Post: Aug 29, 2012 6:47 AM Last Post By: acc
Aug 27, 2012 7:07 AM
Help with itinerary please!Hi,
We are going to Japan in October and we are thinking of following the itinerary below. We plan on buying the JR 14 day pass and using the JR line as much as possible.
Any tips/comments on whether our planned itinerary looks feasible would be gratefully received.
In particular we are not certain about whether to go to Kanazawa and Mount Koya. We also wondered about going to visit the snow monkeys but are not sure whether it would be worth doing so in October?
13 October: arrive. Tokyo overnight
14 October: Tokyo overnight
15 October: Tokyo overnight
16 October: Hakone overnight
17 October: Takayama overnight
18 October: Shirakawa-go day trip
19 October: Kanazawa overnight
20 October: Mount Koya overnight
21 October: Kyoto overnight
22 October: Kyoto overnight
23 October: Kyoto overnight (possibly Nara as a day trip)
24 October: Hiroshama overnight (or possibly Kyoto and do Hiroshama as a day trip from there. Half day trip to miyajima from Hiroshama.
25 October: Tokyo overnight or maybe stay in Kyoto for one more night
26 October: Tokyo overnight (possibly Nikko as a day trip)
27 October: going home
Aug 27, 2012 1:59 PM
1Looks like a good plan. Personally I'd allow 3 days for Kyoto plus one day for Nara and would perhaps skip Nikko this time as it is a long way from Tokyo.
Both Kanazawa and Koyasan are fine places well worth a visit. If I had to decide between the two, I'd go with Koyasan as to me it is more unique, while Kanazawa is more like "little Kyoto".
Kanazawa to Koyasan takes some time on transport, perhaps better to access Koyasan from Kyoto later on.
A one week rail pass might make more sense if you visit Hakone with the Hakone free pass and travel Tokyo-Takayama by bus (same time, but much cheaper than train). You'd then continue via Shirakawago to Kanazawa by bus (which would anyway not be covered by the rail pass) and could then activate your railpass travelling from Kanazawa to Kyoto/Koyasan.
Aug 28, 2012 2:47 AM
Sounds great !
I spent one night in a temple (Regenjo-in) in Koya-san, and we really liked it. Honestly, I recomand it. The cemetery on Mount Koya is impressive, and sleeping in a temple (with the ceremonies) is a thing to try.
To see some monkeys, I went in Arashiyama, near Kyoto. Those are not snow monkeys, but they were free (humans were in cage) and really cute. And the view on Kyoto from the mount is quite nice.
If you go to Hiroshima, I suggest that you spend a night on Miyajima Island. The ryokan there are a bit expensive, but really worth it. I spent the night at the Ryoso Kawaguchi.
If you like hiking, go on the top of Mount Misen. If you just like the beautiful view, you can climb with a cable car.
Aug 29, 2012 6:01 AM
3Thanks all, these are really helpful comments.
We are not sure whether Mount Koyo with a stay in a temple and the additional travel costs of getting there will be too expensive for our budget and therefore possibly might do any extra night in Kyoto instead (particular given the festival and as Nara is likely to require a full day).
We are not sure whether to do two nights in Takayama with one night in Kanazawa or visa versa. Any suggestions as to which would be better would be great or whether there is somewhere else we should consider staying for our third night.
Aug 29, 2012 6:47 AM
I think two nights in Takayama makes a little more sense, just because it will take a while for you to move from Hakone to Takayama (17th) and this will also allow you to complete the rest of the round course in Hakone, assuming your accommodation in Hakone is part way along the round course (eg. Gora/Togendai). This then lets you spend a full day (18th) in Takayama including the morning markets, then the following morning (19th) you can leave early for Shirakawago, spend a few hours there and then continue on to Kanazawa. You then get the afternoon in Kanazawa (19th) and then overnight Kanazawa and then I would spend the majority of the following day (20th) in Kanazawa before catching the evening Thunderbird train to Kyoto. This also lets you easily see Toji Temple Markets in the morning of the 21st.
Note when leaving Hakone from Mishima/Odawara Station to Takayama Station is roughly 4-4.5 hours using the JR Pass.
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