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Hobart, Australia
Level Contributor
17 posts
13 reviews

I have booked flights for mid November and have a rough itinerary and am seeking advice from people. I fly into Tokyo but am leaving the next day as I will return to explore that area when my friend arrives 5 days later. My itinerary so far is:

Day 1: Tokyo

Day 2: hakone

Day 3: hakone

Day 4: hakone/ takayama

Day 5: takayama - day trip to kamikochi

Day 6: takayama

Day 7: takayama/ Tokyo

Day 8: Tokyo

Day 9: Tokyo

Day 10: Hiroshima

Day 11:Hiroshima

Day 12: Kyoto

Day 13:Kyoto

Day 14:Kyoto

Day 15: Osaka

Day 16: Osaka

Day 17: Osaka - fly home in late afternoon

Does this seem like a reasonable itinerary? Is there anything that I really shouldn’t miss out on? Too long/short in any areas? Hakone and takayama I will be by myself so really looking forward to onsens, good food and being in nature. How easy is it to go from hakone to takayama, or should I have done it the other way around, as my friend is flying into Tokyo quite early and I need to come back in via train. How easy is it to move around takayama up to kamikochi and Kanazawa?

Disneyland Tokyo or universal studios Osaka?

All advice is really appreciated.

3 replies to this topic
Tsukuba, Japan
Level Contributor
9,667 posts
317 reviews
1. Re: Itinerary

It looks like a waste of time that you come back to Tokyo between Takayama and Hiroshima. Is this because your friend comes to Tokyo later than you? Can't you meet at Nagoya between Takayama and Hiroshima?

It takes an hour from Takayama to Hirayu Onsen and half an hour from Hurray Onsen to Kamikochi by Takayama-based Nobi bus, as follows.


It takes @50 min. from Takayama to Shirakawago, and @75 min. from Shirakawago to Kanazawa by Nobi bus, as follows.


To mover from Hakone to Takayama, you have to take Tokaido Shinkansen Hikari Superexpress from Odawara to Nagoya, and transfer to JR Takayama Line. Part of JR Takayama Line is now closed because of the landslides caused by heavy rain in early July, 2018, and JR Limited Express Wide View Hida is not moving from Nagoya. It is said it will be open in mid August, but we don't know on what date. But, substitute bus is moving now, as follows.


Are you going to use the JR Pass? The 7 day JR Pass does not cover your itinerary, while the 14 day JR Pass does not seem to pay off, unless you return to Tokyo in the end.

From Tokyo to Hakone, it is more inexpensive to use Odakyu Railway's Romance Car Superexpress from Shinjuku to Hakone Yumoto, while if you use the JR Pass, you can take Tokaido Shinkansen Kodama Superexpress from Tokyo or Shinagawa to Odawara.

Hong Kong, China
Level Contributor
7,002 posts
190 reviews
2. Re: Itinerary

While it's fine to stay 2 nights in Hakone to avoid changing hotels, consider visiting Kawaguchi-ko in Fuji 5-lake as day trip. koyo (fall foliage) usually reaches peak in mid-Nov, with an annual Koyo-matsuri (festival) held on the northern shore.

Note that Kamikochi usually closes after 15th Nov during winter.

While Takayama and Okuhida onsen area are worthwhile to visit, it'd be a waste of time (if you have to return to Tokyo) as mentioned by Mabei-sensei.

Consider also Nikko area for sightseeing and nearby Kinugawa onsen. These are within 2 hours from Tokyo served by Tobu express train. Another option is Izu Peninsula with mountains, waterfalls and a long coastline with plenty of onsen towns.

Level Contributor
25 posts
8 reviews
3. Re: Itinerary

I recently went to Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka. I'm not sure what your reservations are like, but I would just stay in Tokyo a few days rather than backtrack if possible. I did do a write up on my time in Tokyo if you're interested, it includes some information on Tokyo Disneyland you might find helpful. Have a wonderful holiday!


The sites in Kyoto are all about 30-mins apart so it can take a lot of time just to get around. Renting a bicycle is nice and saves you from waiting around for the bus. I felt 2-days was enough time in Kyoto as it is very touristy and crowded, but 3 is reasonable.

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