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Suggestions for 4th trip to Japan in November

Suggestions for 4th trip to Japan in November

Old Mar 25th, 2019, 12:41 PM
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Suggestions for 4th trip to Japan in November

Thanks to the input from you all, we’ve had 3 wonderful trips to Japan in the last 5 years and are now making plans for our 4th trip this fall, arriving at the very end of October and we have 3 weeks. I would appreciate comments and suggestions for the itinerary. In previous trips we’ve been to: most of Kyushu, Hakone, Fuji 5 Lakes area, Matsumoto, Noto Peninsula, Kanazawa, Mt Koya (and of course Kyoto and Tokyo). We plan on returning to both Kyoto and Tokyo, these will be two of our “anchors” for our itinerary. We will be a little late for fall colors and weather in Hokkaido so I am thinking about more time in Tohoku (but would consider a night or two in Hakodate).

There are a few constraints but also flexibility. First, we fly into Haneda, arriving around 5pm. Because of the Rugby finals, the Tokyo hotels I like are booked, so I’d like to fly out of Haneda after we arrive. The two possible destinations that I think might work are Hakodate or Aomori, depending on the final itinerary. Second, we fly out of Osaka so we are spending our last 3 nights in Kyoto (these are the only dates that are set because of hotel reservations). Third, we will stay for 2 nights in Ise Shima, either immediately before Kyoto or with a stop in between Ise Shima and Kyoto if there is a strong recommendation. Finally, I want at least two or three nights in Tokyo.

So generally, I want to start north and work our way down towards Tokyo and this what I need help with. Places I definitely want to spend two or three nights each: Lake Towada (and Oirase Stream) and Nikko (and Lake Chuzenji). We are fine with some driving (we spent 10+ days in Kyushu mostly driving last year) but I would prefer not to be driving the entire time prior to Tokyo. There are around 12 nights for this routing, not including the first night of arrival, before getting to Tokyo. We prefer to stay at least two nights in one place but a couple of one-nighters are OK. We’re more interested in scenery, gardens, artisan crafts and nice relaxing ryokans than castles and temples. A little backtracking will be OK if necessary.

Thanks everyone, in advance, for your suggestions on routing/stopovers.

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Old Mar 25th, 2019, 02:48 PM
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So happy to see that you are making your fourth visit soon!!

And a million thanks for all your help to me.
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Old Mar 25th, 2019, 04:47 PM
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Nikko and Lake Chuzenji are delightful, IMO! If you have any interest in Japanese screens, consider visiting the Toshogu Museum of Art -- some of it's pieces are breathtakingly beautiful!
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