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Need some inspiration for itinerary 2019/5/27 12:56
So I've booked most of my trip through the Northern Alps starting in Tokyo.

I am hoping for some ideas after Kyoto - so I have 4 nights to fill in from November 20.

I really am open to any ideas!

Current itinerary:

Tokyo 3 nights

Matusumoto 1 night

Toyama 1 night

Kanzazawa 2 nights

Takayama 2 nights

Kyoto 3 nights.

I've been to Tokyo 6 times before also.
by Simmo29  

Re: Need some inspiration for itinerary 2019/5/27 18:14

Gooday, working backwards I take it that you are arruiving around the 7th November. I mention that only because we were over there at the end October last year and by the beginning of November Takayama was in full colour for autumn, so what I would do is to shoot off to Takayama the day after I arrived, then Toyama, Kanazawa, and Kyoto. But I would squeeze a night at Hikone in between Kanazawa and Kyoto, I am a huge Hikone fan.

I am assuming that you are leaving via Tokyo? If so I could recommend the Izu peninsula for a few nights although before going there I would spend a night at Nara which is really pretty any time of the year, really it is much nicer than Kyoto these days if you like parks and deer, and less crowded.

At Izu we went (a few weeks ago) to Shuzenji which is pretty easy to get to via Mishima, the shinkansen stop. Shuzenji is a very pretty onsen town. We stayed 2 nights, which I think would be pretty much tops although if you had a car there is a few daytrips that might suit. There are a few other onsen towns around the peninsula, we also stayed at Ajiro which is between Atami and Ito. It was pretty and very reasonable, though if you are eating out of the hotel you are best off at Ito. Atami wasnt really my cuppa. From Shuzenji you'd be looking at about 2 1/2 hours to Narita. From Ito or Ajiro or Atama, a little less.

We went to Narita from Tonosawa, a little town a few hundred metres from Hakone Yumoto. Hakone can be sneered at a bit as being touristy, but really at Tonosawa surrounded by nature you might be 300 miles from Hakone Yumoto, not 300 metres. A very nice place to finish a holiday.

I hope that all gives food for thought.

by Lazy Pious (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Need some inspiration for itinerary 2019/5/27 18:15
for me only 3 days in Kyoto are not enough to see all its beauty, Matsumoto is not worth a night.
Near Kyoto: Nara, Hiroshima, Mount Koya, Kinosaki, Uji etc :))
by pirataurbano rate this post as useful

Re: Need some inspiration for itinerary 2019/5/27 18:18
Correct. Leaving from Tokyo.

by Simmo29 rate this post as useful

Re: Need some inspiration for itinerary 2019/5/27 21:33

I personally love Matsumoto and I would add a night in Nagano, as well. I saw some great leaves at the end of October in '09 in Ueda and the former Kawanakajima Battlefield. You're also surrounded by apple orchards if that interests you at all. I think Nagano is underrated.

I do also still like Kyoto. If you can mostly avoid the buses and avoid the places on everyone's list of "must-dos" it's not as crowded. Ninnaji is readily accessible and I found it surprisingly empty. Everyone seems to go to: Kiyomizudera, Fushimi Inari, the bamboo forest in Arashiyama, Kinkakuji, and the Nishiki Market. If you spend a couple months on this forum you will see everyone mention they need to go to that list of 5 places when they are in Kyoto. I loved the two imperial villas Shugakuin and Katsura that need to be reserved in advance. I'd go back in a second if my child wasn't too young to visit with me.

I'm in the anti-Hakone camp. I don't really enjoy the fact the main form of entertainment is taking various modes of transport in a big circle. I like the Tozan line and the ropeway is pleasant enough, but I've gotten caught in crowds at the funicular and I despise the pirate ship across the lake. I like cheezy, I like theme parks, but this is just boring . Other than looking like a pirate ship, it's just a boat across a lake that takes 20+ minutes with boring scenery. And it irks even more that I need to pay 4600 yen for the dubious pleasure of being carted around various ways in a circle. On a more personal note, despite the fact Hakone gets tons of foreigners, I've found the ryokan there are the least likely to work with someone with dietary restrictions compared to so many other locations and if you're not eating in your ryokan trying to find dinner at night is less than fun.

I went to Koya-san in mid-November if I remember correctly, it was colder than I expected and there were actually a few dirty piles of snow. They also were checking the cable car the day I arrived, so we had to transfer to a bus to go up to Koya-san. It was the first time in my life I developed motion sickness and at that time I could go on rides like the Tilt-a-whirl on repeat.

I've not overnighted there but I liked Hikone. I went one year in January and it was warmer than Koya-san in November.

Good luck!
by rkold rate this post as useful

Re: Need some inspiration for itinerary 2019/5/27 23:53
I vote for staying in and around Kyoto.

Depending on how the season goes, late November is the peak Autumn foliage season. Kyoto is the best place for it.

And, on 21st of every month there is a big flea market at Toji temple in Kyoto.

Have a good trip.
by miyako (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Need some inspiration for itinerary 2019/5/27 23:58
It depends on what you're interested in and where you've been other than Tokyo. Here's a few ideas....
1) work your way around the kii peninsula, visiting onsen towns, walking a little of the kumano kodo and seeing the grand shrines.
2) Hikone, Kiso Valley, Nagano, Yudanaka (for the snow monkeys).
3) do you like dinosaurs? The museum in Katsuyama, Fukui is excellent.
4) if cities are your thing, how about Nagoya?
5) you could always head to Hiroshima, Miyajima, Okayama.
by Sal1980 rate this post as useful

Re: Need some inspiration for itinerary 2019/5/28 09:16
Thanks everyone for your replies and great ideas!
by Simmo29 rate this post as useful

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