So planning to go to Japan later this week for about 10 days (travel time not included. Roughly 29th Mar - 7th Apr although it depends on which flights I get).
As this isn't my first time, I'm fairly laid back about what to see but I've not been to Shikoku or to the Kii peninsula. I plan to take along a bike so would look to stay overnight in places for at least a couple days or more. Also, I don't plan to do bike touring (too much planning involved & equipment I won't have like panniers) so no one-way trips by bike aside from the Shimanami Kaido.
However, I'm having problem putting together a coherent itinerary & thought I'd ask in here for ideas. The following is completely optional and in no specific order (but in a vague order!). Flights & airports are flexible as long as it's ANA.
* Fly from UK to Osaka (KIX/ITM) via Tokyo.
* Send bike via takkyubin to Kyoto/Osaka & spend a day or two chilling & looking for a rinko bag for the trains. (My bike is big though with no quick-release so might be difficult)
* Tick off the Nara-Kyoto route which sounds rather nice - http://nara-cycling.com/map/nara-kyoto-english/pdf/map.pdf
. Mt Yoshino could be perfect timing for cherry blossoms actually - http://nara-cycling.com/map/nara-kyoto-english/pdf/jyouhou.pdf
. Or too early?
* Go to Himeji-jo (Last time I went was when it was being renovated so never got to see the outside in its full glory)
* 2 days Kumano Kodo walk? The Nakahechi route sounds well-travelled but the full thing is multi-days so not sure which segment I'd want to do if I only want to do two days...?
* Day trip to Kibi Plain from Shin-Osaka (which would help make the Sanyo Sanin pass pay for itself)
* Have been to Kurashiki before - pretty, so maybe stop by.
* Takkyubin bike between Kyoto/Osaka to Onomichi for Shimanami Kaido
* I would probably send my baggage onto Matsuyama(?) and stay couple days there & explore area. Or stay in Takamatsu?
* Loop back to Osaka/Kyoto and fly out from there?
I'm thinking maybe the 7 days JR Sanyo Sanin Area Pass? It would pay off with the stops above however but wouldn't cover Kumano Kodo - although I could drop that for something else/shuffle things around. 7 days validity may be difficult to work with maybe...
Really vague (so little time!) so happy for any thoughts or ideas! Thanks in advance!