Is our 25 day itinerary doable?

Old Jul 23rd, 2007, 12:11 AM
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Is our 25 day itinerary doable?

Hey everyone.

My hubby and me finally managed to get beyond the eternal "somewhere in the future" planning stage and planned our trip to Japan.

In October, we will be embarking on a 25 day journy. We arrive at Narita in the early morning of October 9th and will depart from the same airport again in the early afternoon of November 1st.

We had a tough time making an itinerary, and balancing what we wanted to see (as hubby is into modern cities and wanted to spend a night at Koyasan, and I wanted some more traditional Japan and a night at an onsen hotel)

We have come up with the following itinerary, would appreciate thoughts if it is doable.

October 9:
Arrive at Narita at 10am

October 10-14:
Tokyo. We want to explore the city at a quiet pace, love wandering around different neighbourhoods.

October 15-16:
Hakone with an overnight stay in an onsen ryokan. Travel to Nagoya late afternoon of the 16th and stay overnight there.

(suggestions are welcome regarding the onsen ryokan, am at a loss for a good one in the 150 dollar a person pricerange. hubby doesnt eat fish/shellfish)

October 17:
Travel to Magome from Nagoya, hike to Tsumago and stay overnight in Tsumago.

October 18:
Travel from Tsumago to Kyoto and check into hotel there

October 19:
Kyoto

October 20:
Travel from Kyoto to Koyasan, spend night

October 21:
Return to Kyoto from Koyasan

October 22:
Kyoto - visit the matsuri

October 23:
Travel to Osaka and visit universal studios (hubby and me both wanted to visit a coaster/themepark)
Stay overnight in Osaka

October 24:
Travel from Osaka to Hiroshima with a stop at Himeji along the way. Stay overnight in Hiroshima

October 25:
Hiroshima and Mijajima
stay overnight in Hiroshima

October 26:
Travel from Hiroshima to Fukuoka
stay overnight in Fukuoka

October 27:
Travel from Fukuoka to Nagasaki
stay overnight in Nagasaki

October 28:
Visit Huis ten Bosch theme park
(dutch, so we have to ^^)
stay overnight in Nagasaki

October 29-31
These days we planned nothing yet, we need to be back in Tokyo for an overnight stay on the 31st, but will probably spend some more time in Kyoto as we have planned limited time there before. Hubby is not overly temple savvy.

November 1st:
Fly back home from Narita.


Are we trying to plan in too much?
I had a hard time working in being in Kyoto on the day for the Jidai Matsuri, and want to spend atleast one Sunday in Tokyo and didnt want to do Hakone on a weekend.

Any suggestions would be highly appreciated.

Krysta



Krysta_v is offline  
Old Jul 23rd, 2007, 03:13 AM
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I would go crazy traveling almost every day but that's me. However, my main point is I don't feel you are spending nearly enough time in Kyoto. I was there for almost two weeks and barely scratched the surface. My suggestion would be to spend at least 7 days there and use it as a base for day trips to Nara, Miho Museum (a must see), Ohara, Umeji,Himeji Palace etc.
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Old Jul 23rd, 2007, 09:48 AM
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Hi, Krysta_v -

Sounds like you've planned for a nice mix of things. I agree with glorialf that you might want more time in and around Kyoto - it really is a wonderful place with a lot to see.

Enjoy!
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Old Jul 24th, 2007, 08:47 AM
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Agree with the others on spending more time in Kyoto. Perhaps you can spend 3 extra days in Kyoto and shift everything else down on your itinerary so that you don't have the 3 days at the end that you don't have anything planned for right now.

Were it me, I would do a week in Tokyo (with possibly one day as a daytrip) , and a week in Kyoto (with one day as a daytrip). I loved Kyoto and think that you will too if you spend time and take it at a relaxed pace.

Re: your question about the onsen ryokan...a lot of people on this forum recommend Ichinoyu Honkan. I believe this fits in your price range and one of the rooms even has a nicely decorated onsen in the room. We stayed at Kansuiro and loved it but I believe it is a little more than $150 per person.

Hope that helps. Enjoy your visit!
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Old Jul 24th, 2007, 06:03 PM
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I would add two nights to Kyoto, stay a night in Miyajima and not two in Hiroshima. I would also add a night to Fukuoka. Looks like the time between Hakone and Kyoto needs fine tuning or maybe an extra day?

Fly back from Nagasaki to haneda and using the Star Alliance or JAL pass coupon if you qualify, see link

http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2364.html

here is also another link for information of the areas you will be visiting, click on the areas to see pdf files

http://www.jnto.go.jp/eng/location/rtg/index.html

All in all looks like fun to me, traveling in Japan is very easy and you are following the shinkansen line perfectly!

Aloha!

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Old Jul 26th, 2007, 11:26 PM
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Thanks for the suggestions!

Hubby doesnt want do do domestic flight back from Kyushu to Tokyo as he prefers the long trainrides to enjoy the views outside of the window

Changed some things around to give us more time in Kyoto.

So now we are looking at:

9-14 october:
6 nights in Tokyo

15-16 october:
travel from Tokyo to Hakone (15)
1 overnight stay in Hakone
travel to Nagoya from Hakone (16)

17-18 october:
travel from Nagoya to Magome (17)
Hike from Magome to Tsumago
1 overnight stay in Tsumago
Travel from Tsumago to Kyoto (18)

18-22 october
5 nights in Kyoto

23-24 october
travel from Kyoto to Koya-san (23)
1 overnight stay at Koya-san
travel from Koya-san to Osaka (24)

24-26 october
2 nights in Osaka
travel from Osaka to Hiroshima with a stopover at Himeji (26)
1 night in Hiroshima

27 october
visit Hiroshima and Mijajima (27)
overnight stay in Mijajima

28-30 october
travel from Mijajima to Fukuoka (28)
visit Huis ten bosh (29)
travel from Fukuoka to Tokyo (30)

One last day in Tokyo to relax/buy souvenirs and stuff (31)

Fly home from Narita around noon on 1st of November.

Think all in all this is more doable, cut down on some strange backtracking on the train and found more efficient routes. Gives us more time in Kyoto (much needed)
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Old Jul 27th, 2007, 10:18 AM
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I'm no expert, but this plan sounds much better to me. I think you'll be glad you added more time in Kyoto.
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Old Jul 27th, 2007, 10:37 AM
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Plan looks great and definitely doable.

Glad your spending a night in Miyajima, let us know how it goes!

Just thinking if you get a 14 day jr pass it would expire on the 28th if you use the first day as of the 15th which is why I had suggested the air flight back but I also like to stay on ground once I get there so I know what your DH means by seeing the countryside from the train. Or you could start a 14 day pass on the 17th and take the Odayaku Express from Tokyo which is cheaper than paying the back end from Fukuoka-Tokyo.

http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e5206.html

We'll be doing something similar in April for 4 weeks so its exciting to see your trip progressing.

Aloha!
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Old Jul 31st, 2007, 11:47 PM
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I tried booking a room with private outdoor bath at Ichinoyu Ryokan in Hakone, but unfortunately, that was fully booked for the date we wanted to go..

As my husband REALLY doesnt feel comfortable doing the shared bath thing, and all the other ryokan I found so far in the area that fall within our budget do not offer a private bath, I am now thinking of just doing Hakone on a daytrip from Tokyo.

We have booked a stay at Momiji-so on Miyajima later on in the trip, so hoping to get my Ryokan experience from that...

A second question I have in that aspect, if we are not staying overnight in Hakone would it be doable to travel from Tokyo to Magome (Kiso-valley) and get there relatively early in the day still? or would it be wiser to still go to Nagoya first, spend the night there and travel to Kiso-valley from Nagoya the next day?

Thank you everyone for the comments so far, very helpfull


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Old Aug 1st, 2007, 08:47 AM
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krysta,

I felt just like your DH before I went to my first ryokan. Tell him don't worry about it Japanese are very discreet and its just like being in a very nice and plush men's locker room anyway, no big deal.

In Hakone I would rather not pay the extra to have a hot tub in my room as they are usually small and inadequate imho and the main baths are always soooo much better.

Have you checked out this ryokan on Miyajima?

http://www.japaneseguesthouses.com/d.../kinsuikan.htm

Same price range as Momijiso but they have real hot spring baths and a nice view of the torii and looks in better shape overall than Momijiso.

Aloha!
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