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Where to go after Dewa Sanzan 2018/4/16 06:30
Hello! I posted here regarding Kyushu/ Shikoku about a week ago and you were all so helpful, so I'm here to inquire about something else.

To start, I've been to Dewa Sanzan twice before, and each time I've been unable to conquer Gassan due to rainfall the first time, and a rock slide the second. Selfishly, my friends and I on our next trip this September wish to complete this leg of the hike and finally cross it off the list. The thing is, its location is a bit at odds with where we're spending the bulk of our trip.

We begin in Tokyo for a few days, then move off to Dewa Sanzan for 2 days and 1 night, the second day hiking and descending Gassan and hightailing it out of there.

My question is, since we're headed in the direction of Kyoto next, what are good areas to stop along the way? The train ride direct to Kyoto is brutal in terms of length, so we were looking to break it up. I was thinking Toyama since the train ride isn't too long. Takayama seemed pretty ideal, but hyperdia puts it at a very long train ride. I wish Japan had more night trains, would make the train rides easier to swallow haha.

Thanks guys, much appreciated!
by bigmac996 (guest)  

Re: Where to go after Dewa Sanzan 2018/4/16 08:31
Yes, the Dewa Sanzan/Shonai region is one of Japan's most isolated in terms of transportation, which is also a reason why it is so nice. And train connections along the Sea of Japan coast are unfortunately horrible. The only efficient train connections from Tsuruoka towards Toyama, Takaoka and Kanazawa leave Tsuruoka at 5:47 and 18:23, and even those take almost 5 hours to Toyama.

If you have a Japan Rail Pass, it is probably faster to travel via Niigata and Tokyo by shinkansen, which opens up plenty of potential places for a stop-over.
by Uji rate this post as useful

Re: Where to go after Dewa Sanzan 2018/4/16 08:41
Toyama is actually not a very interesting place. Kanazawa would be, if this is still reachable within a reasonable travel day. Or Kurobe gorge, specially if you go in autumn (sorry, dont remember when you go). But for Kurobe gorge, you essentially need a full day.

Did you look at a possibility to fly to Itami from somewhere close to Dewa Sanzan?

As Uji says, if you go through Niigata and then over to Tokyo by Shinkansen, nice stop overs would be Nagano (Obuse, Monkey valley...), Karuizawa (museum, mountains).

It depends how long you have for the travel, but you could also look into getting to Yamagata from Dewa Sanzan. It has not a great connection between each other, but I think there is a bus. Yamadera is a very nice place and from there you can get to Sendai and catch a Shinkansen or catch one from Yamagata. If you go to Sendai, you could also work in Hiraizumi in your itinerary. In this case you will need probably about 3 days between Dewa Sanzan and Kyoto.

Enjoy your trip to Japan!
by LikeBike rate this post as useful

Re: Where to go after Dewa Sanzan 2018/4/17 06:01
Thanks so much for the reply guys. I really wish the train would easily travel along the coast there, but we'll have to deal! I think we might end up checking out Kanazawa via Niigata all things considered. It seems like a good stop over that isn't too far. We might just spend the night at Yudono and head out the following morning, rather than immediately after the hike.

Thanks again, always appreciated!
by bigmac996 (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Where to go after Dewa Sanzan 2018/5/8 08:36
I would also consider going to Kamo Jellyfish Aquarium, Zenpoji and Churenji if you're in Tsuruoka.
The jellyfishes are incredibly beautiful, Zenpoji has a pagoda and hundreds of buddha statues, and in Churenji the ceiling is covered with pop culture tiles, with some Prince and The Beatles images. Who would expect such things in a temple huh lol
by artemiss (guest) rate this post as useful

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