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Would appreciate comments on our Japan itinerary

Would appreciate comments on our Japan itinerary

Jun 3rd, 2014, 05:51 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 2
Would appreciate comments on our Japan itinerary

We are Swiss couple planning to do our honeymoon (18 days/17 nights) in Japan. We are into the beauty of nature, old towns, and animals, but we also like cultural sights and do not want to miss vibrant cities. We have never been Japan before. It's not that I haven't done any online research to put together an interesting trip, but when it comes to traveling, experience is worth a lot. So if you have been to any of these beautiful places, I would like to ask you kindly to share your opinion with us. Is the time frame reasonable? (it shouldn't be too hectic, we do not want to rush from one point to another..) Shall we spend more time at some of these places? Are some nice spots missing which are near to these? By the way, we are planning to buy a 14-day JR Pass. Any experiences with these connections? We are thankful for any comment!

Day 1-6 = Tokyo (including a day-trip to Nikko)
Day 6 -> from Tokyo via Kamakura to Hakone
Day 6-8 = Hakone
Day 8 -> from Hakone to Yamanouchi
Day 8-10 = Yamanouchi
Day 10 -> from Yamanouchi via Matsumoto to Tsumago
Day 10-12 = Tsumago (including a walk to Magome)
Day 12 -> from Tsumago to Kyoto
Day 12-18 = Kyoto (including a day-trip to Nara/Osaka)
dennisamm is offline  
Jun 3rd, 2014, 11:51 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 6,343
day 6 overnight in Nikko, no need to get back to Tokyo allowing you more time in Nikko.

Other than that looks very well planned out. What time of year will this trip be happening? More suggestions would depend on your time of travel.

You can tap on my screen name and read some of my Japan trip reports to gleen useful Japan info.

Aloha!
hawaiiantraveler is offline  
Jun 3rd, 2014, 01:14 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,099
Your itinerary looks nice - my question would be are you leaving from Kyoto - if so you might not find the 14 day JR Pass worth the cost....have you done the math? Use hyperdia.com and make sure to use the total price including the fare and seat fee....

I did the walk from Magome to Tsumago and stayed the night in Tsumago - it looks like you are doubling back....you can go from Nagano to Matsumoto to Nakatsugawa and then bus to Magome....sorry if I completely misinterpreted what your plan is. ;-)
Mara is online now  
Jun 3rd, 2014, 04:54 PM
  #4  
kja
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 20,946
Should be a wonderful honeymoon!

I agree with hawaiiantraveler -- give some thought to spending a night in Nikko. You can see the main temples and shrines there in a single day, but if you want to see lovely Lake Chuzenji and the Kegon-no-Taki waterfalls (lovely!), it would be much better to spend a night in the area. BTW, there is a small museum with some stunning Japanese screens in Nikko that is well worth a bit of time -- the Art Museum of Nikko Toshogu Shrine.

I'm not sure whether you have 5 days in Kyoto or more (since at least one, if not two, days appear to be travel days). I would encourage you to give it as much time as you can! FWIW, I spent 4 full days in Kyoto and 2 full days in Nara and could easily have used more time in the area. And I was glad to spend 2 nights in Nara -- although it can be visited as a day trip from Kyoto, I thought it deserved more time and was glad to see it before day trippers arrived.

Hope that helps!
kja is offline  
Jun 3rd, 2014, 07:39 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,402
dennisamm, you wrote:
Day 1-6 = Tokyo (including a day-trip to Nikko)
Day 6 -> from Tokyo via Kamakura to Hakone

But that really means:
Day 1-5 = Tokyo (including a day-trip to Nikko)
Day 6 -> from Tokyo via Kamakura to Hakone

At least I hope that is what you mean. Otherwise it means Tokyo- Nikko- Kamakura- Hakone on Day 6, which is too much.

Unless you have a particular earlier day to go to Nikko then I think the suggestion above is to go to Nikko on Day 5, spend the night there, then go to Hakone on Day 6 from Nikko.

I suggest that you not do a Nikko day-trip on Day 1. Doing the day-trip on days 2, 3, or 4, makes sense (personally, I wouldn't do it on day 2, either). But if you plan on going on Day 5 then staying overnight there makes sense.

The trip is roughly:
Tokyo-Nikko-Tokyo ¥11,760 (that is JR fare, can get cheaper on Tobu)
Odawara-Nagano ¥11,450
Nagano-Kyoto via Matsumoto ¥10,630

So the JR fares are in the ballpark of ¥35,000, which is much less than the cost of a 14-day JR Pass.

I just JR Pass prices have increased for the first time in the 13+ years that I know. Not much of a change.

The 7-day passs was 28,300 is now 29,110. Looks like the 14-day pass went up 690, I think, and is now 46,390.
http://japanrailpass.net/eng/en003.html
mrwunrfl is offline  
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