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Chubu advice 2018/2/13 02:50
Glimpigumpi-Thank you for suggesting Mt. Norikura, Okuhida Onsen area! Exactly what I'm looking for. But, too many options, can you help with any additional details to help with decisions? Thank you

Tentative, initial plan--early June (yes, rainy and hot, but a previous trip to Kyoto area during June was bearable heatwise, also rain during that trip only impacted us less than 2 days during 2 week trip.

Plan to fly into Nagoya, head to Kaga Onsen 2 nights, Noto Peninsula 3 nights, Ainokura. Thinking of renting car in Kanazawa for Noto and Ainokura.

Want to add Mt. Norikura, Okuhida Onsen, Kiso valley before heading back to Nagoya. Have minimum 18 full days. We have driven in rural areas of Japan, but do not want to drive in cities. I have read that it may be possible to return in car without charge in Takayama.

Any and all thoughts welcomed, thank you, PH




by papayahead  

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/13 14:51
Hi papayahead, long-time-no-see, how are you !?

Although not on a single trip we had driven to most of your listed places and enjoyed it very much. What particular information are you after ?

If you rent from Kanazawa and return in Takayama, under normal condition it will involve an additional one-way drop off charge as they are in different prefectures. But it is also possible that the drop off charge is waived as the distance isn’t that great. Which rental agency are you using !?
by William5 rate this post as useful

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/13 16:28
Aloha William5, old friend!

Hope all is well with you. You must be continuing your Japan travels, so lucky!

After 5 year break we returned to Japan in 2016, biked Shimanami Kaido, Iya Valley, Hiroshima, Osaka. Last November, Kumano Kodo, loved both adventures and has reignited our Japan passions! I have visited Kanazawa, Takayama and Shirakawago, but my partner hasn't.

No definite plans yet. Thinking of flying into Nagoya for a change. Noto Peninsula strongly appeals to me. I read a sublime article in Vogue about Kaga Onsen, but when I look into the area it is unappealing. The article romanticized it and made it sound like small, remote towns, but appears highly developed.

Looking for a logical route between Noto, Ainakura, Mt. Norikura, Okuhida. Possibly add Kiso valley if feasible. We are slow and easy travelers. We don't need to drive, kind of enjoy riding the local buses, but we would consider driving. I read somewhere about the possible free drop-off in Takayama.

Can you give me your thoughts on the area? Any areas you'd recommend? You know me well and what I enjoy :) :)

Thanks, ph

by papayahead rate this post as useful

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/13 16:57
The Noto Peninsula was one of my favourite places in Japan to drive around, but it also happens to be one of the most isolated places in Japan. Do note that the traffic getting out of Kanazawa can be a real pain - but it should be smooth sailing after that. I'm including my previous drives to Noto for info

https://www.japan-guide.com/community/mfedley/report-2236
https://www.japan-guide.com/community/mfedley/report-2237
https://www.japan-guide.com/community/mfedley/report-2238
by mfedley rate this post as useful

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/13 18:04
Other than Nagoya, not of the place you have listed are overly large cities. Maybe hire a car from somewhere on the north side of Nagoya?
by hakata14 rate this post as useful

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/14 02:29
mfedley-I thought you were only a biker, I have you down as "biking sea of japan" tipster. Thank you for your links, extremely helpful. Yes, driving out of the city is my concern. We rented a car for travel to Izu peninsula; 2 blocks from the rental agency we nearly had a head-on collision! (your comments of "not much to do, sleepy" is what we're looking for!)

hakata14-interesting thought, any ideas of city that might be accessible for rental?

Thank you, ph
by papayahead rate this post as useful

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/14 02:36
Yes, we are continuing our quest for beautiful Japan. We’ll be going over next month, hopefully catching rape blossom and sakura during our stay from late March to early April.

There is quite a lot to see and do in the regions you intend to cover. Noto Peninsula is beautiful and we had a memorable road trip there during spring. You can find some of our trip photos on that particular trip below which I had post on another forum. See what is of interest to you and I can forward some additional references if needed.
https://www.tripadvisor.ca/ShowTopic-g294232-i525-k9527117-Photo_shari...

And here are some of our autumn trip photos that include Nagoya, Shin-Hotaka (Okuhida) and Narai (Kiso Valley). Norikura-dake was on the plan but due to time constraint we gave it up as we couldn’t drive direct up the mt (have to ride a connection shuttle bus followed by a long walk).
https://www.tripadvisor.ca/ShowTopic-g294232-i525-k6957454-Photo_shari...

And here are some of our autumn trip photos that include Magome and Tsumago (Kiso Valley), Ainokura and other parts of the Gokayama region.
https://get.google.com/albumarchive/117006987794372147390/album/AF1Qip...

by William5 rate this post as useful

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/14 07:35
William5-photos are fantastic, but is there an index to help identify areas?

Do you have an itinerary, including car, transportation, ryokan details?

Thanks, ph
by papayahead rate this post as useful

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/14 08:50
Although I love doing research I’m no good at writing and haven’t written any trip or blog report. The sequence of the photos roughly follows the driving route of each trip, and by clicking on individual photos there are names/close captions to help identify each location. Do let me know if you need further information of those sites that fancy you.

Happy Planning.
by William5 rate this post as useful

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/14 12:35
Mahalo William,

I will click on photos. Where did you rent and return car? What did you think of drive? I am considering moving to November. We are retired and can go anytime, just anxious to get back!

Aloha, ph

by papayahead rate this post as useful

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/14 14:03
We mostly rent and return at the same outlet. For the first listed trip we took JR from Tokyo to Matsumoto and rent a car there for just 1 day. For the rest of the trip we pick up a rental car in Toyama and did a roughly anti-clockwise loop drive up Noto Peninsula and the southern part of Ishikawa Prefecture before returning to Toyama and took train back to Tokyo.

For the second listed trip we flew into Centrair and from Nagoya we took JR to Matsumoto. Again we rent a car in Matsumoto for a couple days before taking JR back to Nagoya. We then pick up a rental car in Nagoya and did a loop drive south to the Kii Peninsula before returning to Nagoya and flew out from Centrair.

For the third listed trip we flew in KIX and used public transports while we were in Osaka and Kyoto. We did rent a car in Nagoya to drive to Ena Gorge, Kiso Valley and Korankei. We also rent a car from Gifu to drive to Gujo-Hachiman as well as renting another car in Toyama to drive to Ainokura and the other sites in Gokayama.

As you can see there is no need to drive for the whole trip if you don’t want to. Where to pick up a rental car really depends on the places you intend to go and the route you want to take. BTW, weather-wise Nov is a much better time than June and with a bit of luck you get to see some beautiful autumn colour.
by William5 rate this post as useful

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/15 02:47
Thank you William,

We only have experience driving in rural areas, 2 lane roads. I have concerns with renting in Nagoya, Kanazawa and maneuvering out of the city. What was your experience?

What rental companies have you used?

Regarding November travel. We dislike crowds and rather travel in off-peak times, sacrificing prime views for ease of travel. I am concerned about booking ryokans in Okuhida, Norikura area since it may be peak autumn colors.

I appreciate your help, ph
by papayahead rate this post as useful

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/15 05:55
We had driven around town in Nagoya and Kanazawa and yes there will be traffic especially in Nagoya but it’s bear-able. We usually pick up the rental car early in the morning (around 8.00) and driving out of town is no problem at all. Coming back to return the car in the afternoon you will encounter slow traffic, just be prepared.

We had used Toyota, Nissan, Nippon, Times, Budget, ToCoo and a couple of smaller rental agencies. In recent years with the difference of rental charge not as great as before we stick with Toyota.

We hate crowds too but people in Japan are relatively more polite and accommodating. Sometimes we find the Japanese crowds add a festive feel to a visit ! And personally we wouldn’t sacrifice any seasonal highlight for lesser crowd. True that accommodation can be more expensive and more difficult to secure during peak season, but we learn to accept it.

by William5 rate this post as useful

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/15 08:48
Thank you, enjoy your travels!

I am considering train from Nagoya to Takayama, rent car, tour Noto, Okuhida, return to Takayama. Train to kiso and back to Nagoya.

I'll keep you posted, and bother you for further assistance.

PH
by papayahead rate this post as useful

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/15 13:34
Thank you PH, it’s always a pleasure to exchange ideas with another true seasoned traveler.

Using a car for the Noto Peninsula is a great idea. From Takayama go via Shirakawa-go, Gokayama Gassho no Sato, Suganuma, Kaminashi and Ainokura. If doing an anti-clockwise loop go next to Toyama followed by Himi before driving up the peninsula along the eastern coast. Coming back down on the west side of the peninsula Kanazawa can then be dealt with.

Have slight doubt about driving to Okuhida as it has convenient bus link with Takayama and is not entirely enroute going up to Noto Peninsula from Takayama.

by William5 rate this post as useful

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/15 23:36
Sorry, i just saw by now that you addressed me here personally in the beginning.
What is the question exactly? Do you need addresses of good Onsen or Locations to visit in the surroundings of Okuhida Onsen?

by Glimpigumpi rate this post as useful

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/15 23:43
@william: i also looked through your beautiful pictures.
i discovered this during it:
https://get.google.com/albumarchive/117006987794372147390/album/AF1Qip...

what / where exactly is that?
by Glimpigumpi rate this post as useful

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/15 23:50
ah, found out myself. Yoro Park. Wow looks great! - And some people say Nagoya is boring :-)
by Glimpigumpi rate this post as useful

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/16 06:45
Aloha Glimpi!

Thanks again for suggesting Okuhida and Mt. Norikura. A few days ago a program on TV highlighted the rotemburo at Shin-Hotaka Onsen! So, we have to travel by end of Oct before it closes.

I was overwhelmed by options, choices at Okuhida. But, will definitely try to stay at Shin-Hotaka. I LOVE rotemburos, and am looking for the most scenic and unique. Any suggestions? (Last year we visited Yunomine onsen, but Tsuboyu was closed due to typhoon damage)

We are open to any ryokan/minshuku options. We don't need onsens; we just enjoy, love and appreciate rustic, rural experiences, especially interactions with wonderful Japanese locals.

William-regarding rental car to Okuhida. You're right, bus is so convenient. Thanks for pointing that out. Maybe we should just rent in Kanazawa.

Regarding Noto-does it matter clockwise or counter?
How would we get from Okuhida to Norikura? I assume bus, but can't find schedule.
From Norikura, is there convenient transport to Narai?

And to throw a wrench in plan, Kurobe Gorge and Tateyama Alpine/Murodo are so close....any thoughts on how to fit into our plan?

Thank you, I love doing research but any input from you experts is greatly appreciated!

ph
by papayahead rate this post as useful

Re: Chubu advice please 2018/2/16 17:48
well, you are right, shin hotaka has many options so sadly i have not been in all ryokans to tell you about all of them
i can just tell you of the very beautiful rotemburos i have seen:
* 新穂高の湯 is nicely framed by rocks almost in the river
https://www.google.com/maps/place/新穂高の湯/@36.2649663,137.562812,104a,51.8y,2.13t/data=!3m1!1e3!4m13!1m7!3m6!1s0x601d4884402b9dbb:0x852127d6a98b7a38!2sNakano-yu!3b1!8m2!3d36.2!4d137.6!3m4!1s0x0:0xb8ebbdfe48eb444f!8m2!3d36.265148!4d137.562638?hl=en-US
* you can go up the ropeway: Shinhotaka Ropeway (i didnt found it so special, since i am from a country with many mountains and ropeways, also i am generally in this area during summer or winter, so i never saw the real koyou, but you seem to be there in the right time, so might give it a try)
* 白出大滝 is secret, super nice, but you need good mountain equipment and i think it is probably a little bit too hard for just casual tourist
https://www.google.com/maps/place/白出大滝/@36.292918,137.6291481,1186m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m13!1m7!3m6!1s0x601d4884402b9dbb:0x852127d6a98b7a38!2sNakano-yu!3b1!8m2!3d36.2!4d137.6!3m4!1s0x601d451469ea2797:0xcaa3449c61ebc1ac!8m2!3d36.2929173!4d137.6291482?hl=en-US
* but: drive to sanbon taki: it is a super easy walk and extremly beautiful
https://www.google.com/maps/place/Sanbondaki+Falls/@36.1311459,137.582...
** https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HhhSHkR1opI
** you can also combine sanbontaki this on the same day with shirahone onsen, Awanoyu, a very famous onsen for blue water where it is even mixed (dont worry, due to the blue color of the water noone is going to see you naked)
https://www.google.com/maps/place/Awanoyu/@36.1459226,137.6244923,319m...
*** after you saw Awanoyu, you can go also to the next door facility かつらの湯丸永旅館 which is not so famous as Awanoyu, but therefore more quiet
* Hirayu Onsen with its Hirayunomori is also nice. it is also a good place to stay from value / money
https://www.google.com/maps/place/Hirayunomori/@36.1907264,137.551547,...
* when you are in this area, try Hida beef, it is considered one of the best of Japan (take care, it's expensive!)
by Glimpigumpi rate this post as useful

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