Japan trip itinerary thoughts.
I know there have been some travel threads in the past, but I've read through them and thought it was worth posting a new one.
I'm planning a 10-12 day trip to Japan for either mid-April or in the fall sometime. I've been twice before, just Tokyo once and Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, and Nara the second time. This trip, I'd love to go to at least one smaller town and do more specific/less overtly touristy things (see some contemporary art, maybe do some outdoorsy stuff...open to suggestions here).
Right now, I'm thinking about flying into Tokyo, spending a few days there, heading to Kanazawa for a day or two, then Osaka/Kobe for a few days, then a night on Naoshima for the art, and on to Fukuoka for a couple nights to finish the trip.
I know this is a pretty specific question, but I'm still in the planning phase, so I thought I'd check. If anyone has thoughts on things they'd suggest I definitely try to do or places I should try to spend a day or three, let me know.
I'll probably be traveling alone.
Well let's see. Seki... Takefu...Echizen...Sanjo...Sakai.... and finish off in Kyoto for some stones. I don't think 12 days is enough.
I'd love to do some knife-related stuff (and will definitely shop, ha), but it seems like most of the production-related stuff is not very visitor friendly. Agree about the time not being enough
Originally Posted by Jovidah
For outdoorsy I think hiking Mt. Haguro would be amazing. Definitely up there on my bucket list.
I also think seeing the "Moss temple" in Kyoto would be amazing
Mt. Haguro is where my wife is from
Originally Posted by JDA_NC
Anyone have thoughts on going to Fukuoka vs. spending more time in smaller towns around Tokyo and Osaka? Anyone been there and loved it or would it feel like just another big city after tokyo/osaka?
I've been to Fukuoka. It's nice but a bit industrial. We kind of had to spend a night there enroute back from Ishigaki island.
Originally Posted by youkinorn
Did I enjoy it? Yes. Would I go out of my way to go there again? No.
I think if you have the choice, day trips out if Osaka are more memorable in my opinion.
I will personally not forget our day trip to Koyasan (look this up in images).
Hike on the Nakasendo for a few days and stay in ryokan along the way.
By the way visiting Kanazawa is a great idea. Kenrokuen is beautiful. I spent a semester of college there staying with a homestay family back in the early nineties.
If you go to Kyuushuu and can get a little bit off the beaten path (there are buses that will take you to the trailhead, but a car would let you beat the crowds early in the morning), Mt. Kujuu is surreal. It's an active volcano and half of it is like the surface of the Moon. The other half is like Hawaii with huge rhododendron bushes clustering just around the summit.
A lot of the outdoorsy stuff in Japan tends to be hampered, for international tourists, by access. A car will do you wonders, even if you only rent it for the days you want to go hiking. The places and times that a bus can deliver you to a trailhead (and then pick you up, at the end of the day) kind of works against the experience, IMO. You'll tend to start the day with a huge crowd of domestic tourists heading in the same direction you are, and then be rushing down the mountain in the mid afternoon in order to catch your bus back home. The pics above are only relatively devoid of people (and from my perspective, that was already crowded), because I left home with a group of people at like 4:00 am and we beat the bus crowds. Another option would be to take a train to the closest station to where you want to go hiking and then a cab to a trailhead, but not all trailheads have bus stops to get you back to town.
very nice pictures. thank you!