Need some Japan Itinerary advice

Reply

Feb 11th, 2013, 09:10 AM
  #1
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 8
Need some Japan Itinerary advice

Hi! I just start planning my trip to Japan for October 13. I'm going for 12 days. I need some advice on my itinerary especially transportation-wise. We are trying to back track and start our trip south and work our way up since we are flying out of Narita. Here's what we got so far:

Day 1 - Tokyo
Day 2 - Tokyo
Day 3 - Tokyo day trip to Kamakura
Day 4 - Take the train to Hiroshima/Overnight in Hiroshima
Day 5 - Take train to Kyoto
Day 6 - Kyoto
Day 7 - Day trip to Himeji from Kyoto
Day 8 - Day trip to Nara from Kyoto
Day 9 - Takayama [stay in Ryokan]
Day 10 - Day trip to Shirakawa-go/Head back to Tokyo
Day 11 - Tokyo
Day 12 - Travel back to U.S.

Any advice? We are really trying to get as many side trips as possible.

Thanks in advance!
kickmuri is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2013, 09:24 AM
  #2
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 1,725
Are you aware that Himeji Castle is under construction, with much of it under scaffolding, (until 2015, I think).
shelleyk is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2013, 09:41 AM
  #3
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 8
So it's not worth seeing? I thought maybe you could catch a glimpse through the construction.
kickmuri is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2013, 10:15 AM
  #4
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 775
I'll be interested myself in hearing just what the Himeji scaffolding looks like. However, if it's anything like the scaffolding that was over the Ortakoy Mosque last August in Istanbul, it's not the metal scaffolding you can see through but rather, something that looked like a giant canvas bag had been place over the mosque.
MinnBeef is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2013, 11:27 AM
  #5
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 8
I'm considering a day trip to Osaka instead of Himeji from Kyoto as well.
kickmuri is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2013, 11:32 AM
  #6
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 1,725
I can't say anything about what you can or cannot see. I only read about the construction online in researching my upcoming trip. I was going to include Himejii Castle, but as a result of what I read, I am not. Perhaps if you post a seperate question about the construction here or on TA you might get some feedback. BTW, I read that part of the gate of one of the main temples in Nikko is also under construction, but I have decided to go there anyway.
shelleyk is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2013, 11:58 AM
  #7
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 6,342
Progress on tourist sites in Japan.

http://www.japan-guide.com/event/construction.html

Aloha!
hawaiiantraveler is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2013, 01:39 PM
  #8
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 12,407
Thanks HT for that website. It appears that Himeji's main keep is completely covered by a new roof and curtains.
They are recommending Hikone for castle fans instead. It looks like a smaller Himeji, but is still quite nice, and just halfway between Nagoya and Kyoto.
lcuy is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2013, 01:50 PM
  #9
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 32,605
I'd read that Himej was undergoing restoration, but a photo is worth a thousand words. Thanks for the link, HT.
Kathie is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2013, 03:17 PM
  #10
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 262
For a castle visit I'd suggest Nijo Castle right in Kyoto.
http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e3918.html

My advice would be to spend more time in Kyoto.

October is a great time to visit Japan.
Have fun
kalihiwai2 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2013, 04:31 PM
  #11
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,081
http://www.himejijo-syuri.jp/en/index.html

Even though the castle is basically covered by scaffolding, it is possible to visit and see the work going on - if someone is interested in that....you need reservations...I can imagine it is fascinating, but probably not for a first time visitor - I have seen some documentaries on NHK World tv and they seems to use the original methods of construction....
Mara is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2013, 04:55 PM
  #12
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,030
kickmuri, how important is Kamakura to you, compared to Nara or a castle visit? Are you a temple person, with a Kamakura itinerary that goes beyond visiting the Daibutsu?

I think you need day 7 for Kyoto.

Definitely visit Nijo castle, but itis not really a substitute for Himeji.
mrwunrfl is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2013, 05:04 PM
  #13
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 8
Thanks HT for the link. That was very helpful.

mrwunrfl - Thanks for the feedback. Kamakura is high on our list due to the Daibutsu. Most likely, due to the Himeji construction, we will spend day 7 in Kyoto. Possibly make a day trip to Osaka.
kickmuri is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2013, 07:04 PM
  #14
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,030
I'm asking if you have a full day planned in Kamakura besides the Daibutsu because it will cost you between 2 and 3 hours to get there and back, depending on where in Tokyo you are staying.

The destination is HASE(KANAGAWA) if you use hyperdia.com for train info.
mrwunrfl is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2013, 09:45 PM
  #15
kja
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 19,917
If you do decide to visit the Kamakura, you can take the train from Tokyo to Kita Kamakura, visit some temples there and on the way down the hill to Kamakura, take a short train ride to Hase for the Daibutsu (and maybe Hasadera), and then go back to Kamakura for your return train to Tokyo. Just a thought!
kja is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2013, 10:19 PM
  #16
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,030
kja, I knew you were going to post about the virtues of Kamakura!
mrwunrfl is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2013, 10:36 PM
  #17
kja
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 19,917
> kja, I knew you were going to post about the virtues of Kamakura!

I didn't intend to post about Kamakura's virtues, mrwunrfl - I was trying to be neutral about that! Seriously! I enjoyed my day there, but it didn't seem to me as special as some other places I visited. But that's all relative to what else one sees, one's priorities, etc., isn't it?

I only meant to comment on options for visiting it should the OP choose to do so, without commenting on whether the OP should/should not do so.
kja is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2013, 11:33 PM
  #18
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,030
Sorry. I saw a comment some time ago from a poster who loved Kamakura and connected that to you. You are right, it is all relative.
mrwunrfl is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 12th, 2013, 10:10 AM
  #19
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 775
Thanks for the link, HT. Himeji is now officially off my Kyoto itinerary. As it is, I'm most looking forward, castle-wise, to Matsumoto's anyway.
MinnBeef is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 12th, 2013, 11:14 AM
  #20
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,081
When I took my first trip to Japan I stayed in Tokyo for a week and did Kamakura as a day trip - I spent the whole day walking around and didn't even get to one of the most famous temples as it closed at 4pm - can't remember which one - but the Daibutsu was quite cool and a nice ride on the little Enoden train....otoh, if I had a tight itinerary I might omit it....
Mara is offline  
Reply With Quote
 



Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 03:11 AM.