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5th Trip to Japan - Where? 2022/4/22 07:19
My partner and I have been 4 times to Japan and are desperate to return , not taking it for granted but as therefs a chance we may be able to go this Autumn (mid October - mid November) I want to start planning.

Previously our trips were as follows:

1: Osaka/Kyoto (1 Week)
2: Okinawa/Miyakojima/IshigakiJima/Osaka/Kinosaki Onsen/Takayama/Kanazawa/Himeji/Tokyo (4 Weeks)
3: Hokkaido (Shiretoko/Kushiro/Lake Akan/Obihiro/Sapporo/Otaru/Asahikawa/Tokyo (2.5 Weeks)
4: Kyushu (Fukuoka/Kumamoto/Nagasaki/Karatsu/Kagoshima/Mount Aso/Miyazaki/Yakushima/Amamioshima (5 Weeks)

For our next trip wefll probably have 3 weeks, travelling from Europe and top ideas so far are
Tohoku, maybe head straight to Hakodate or Aomori and work our way down, ending in Tokyo.
Western Honshu/Shikoku, Hiroshima prefecture, Tottori, Shimanami Kaido, Shikoku, probably ending in Osaka.
There are so many other possibilities, we could go back to Hokkaido and see the places we missed, e.g. the SW with Hakodate, Noboribetsu, Lake Toya plus up North to Rebun/Rishiri.

We could do SE Honshu, i.e. Nara, Wakayama, Gifu, Toyama, Nagano, Shizuoka, Chiba prefectures.

Food is really important, we also love exploring cities, going out and meeting people, hiking, onsens, nature, museums etc. We have enjoyed everywhere wefve been apart from maybe Kushiro.

Any help would be appreciated.
by Denis C  

Re: 5th Trip to Japan - Where? 2022/4/22 08:49
Have you explores the Izu peninsula before? Lots of beautiful nature, luxury train carriage trips along the coast, onsets, etc.

Also, Koyasan (Mount Koya) in Wakayama is gorgeous as well.
by Ageha (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: 5th Trip to Japan - Where? 2022/4/22 12:41
I think you could do quite well on any of those possible itineraries. Though by that time of year it will be cooling down fast in Hokkaido, so I myself probably wouldn't do it. You could see the Tohoku Region though - you have a lot of time and there is a lot of ground to cover. However again, as you wrote, I would do it from the north going southwards. Renting a car would be the ideal way to get to many of the more isolated places.
Seeing the Chugoku Region is also well worth it - Yamaguchi is sadly given short shrift. Izumo, Matsue, Tottori, and Hiroshima all have more to explore, and Shikoku could be the icing on the cake. The Hokuriku area also has loads to explore, and Kanazawa is wonderful.
by Ken (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: 5th Trip to Japan - Where? 2022/4/22 14:14
Mid Oct to mid Nov kind of coincidence with koyo season. (Autumn leaves). Now being from Switzerland that might not be your main goal seeing in Japan. But if it is, check out the timing on JG. I guess Tohoku would be a good plan.
A few years ago I was traveling through Japan North to South and around early/ mid October in northern Tohoku and it was always about 7–14 days too early for full koyo.
Like on this day outside of Kakunodate where I stumbled upon a koyo festival but hardly any koyo: https://bicycletraveljapan.blogspot.com/2017/10/day-18-nyuto-onsen-dow...
by LikeBike rate this post as useful

Re: 5th Trip to Japan - Where? 2022/4/22 16:26
Good point on Hokkaido in late October, we were there in September last time and it was lovely, caught the start of Koyu. We love seeing Koyu and all our other previous trips were in October/November so we saw some stunning sights.
It all sounds great, as does Izu Peninsula and Wakayama, we will eventually visit all of them, just to choose the next one that is tricky!
by Denis C rate this post as useful

Re: 5th Trip to Japan - Where? 2022/4/22 16:55
You are missing Nagoya. You say food and cities. If so, you should think of Nagoya. We can pick up cities or metros by population; Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya, Fukuoka, and Sapporo. Hiroshima and Sendai would follow, but they would start to confuse with other cities.

You may already know that Hakodate and Aomori area is a brand-new World Heritage site. Odai Yamamoto Site dates back to 13,000 BCE, but this site is not well developed for sightseeing yet. On the other hand, Sannai Maruyama is already well organized.
https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/1632/
https://jomon-japan.jp/en/
https://jomon-japan.jp/learn/jomon-sites/odai-yamamoto
https://sannaimaruyama.pref.aomori.jp/english/
by Luisjp rate this post as useful

Re: 5th Trip to Japan - Where? 2022/4/23 04:53
Kansai? If it were me I would head straight for Kyoto before the foliage season starts to pack in the domestic tourists, and I would visit sites that are less famous. It seems a little odd to me that you have spent less than a week there given your total trips and weeks spent in Japan.

If you have gotten a bad impression of Kyoto because of the extremely crowded tourist magnet sites there, then you really owe it another look. Kyoto is much, much more than Kiyomizudera, Kinkakuji, and Fushimi Inari Taisha! It has loads of less-famous sites that are as good as any other places in Japan, and they are all concentrated in a small, easily accessible area. I try to spend a few days there on every trip to Japan, and I donft think I could ever get tired of revisiting my personal favorite sites, and discovering new ones.

The sooner you are able to get into Japan after it opens to tourism, the better the conditions will be. I supposed foreign tourists will start to return pretty quickly but it will probably take a while to return to pre-pandemic levels. If I were you, I would go to Koyasan on this trip, too. Some of the other places you are thinking about are fine, but they are likely to still be relatively uncrowded when you take your sixth, seventh, and eighth trips, so why not use the unusual conditions to spend some quality time in Kansai?

From Kyoto you can make multiple trips to Nara (or spend one or two nights there). There is so much to see and do in Nara. I also recommend the Kii Peninsula. One of my favorite places in all of Japan is along the Mie Coast. The eastern part of Kumano Kodo is great for hiking if you donft want to see many people. Or you can hit the more famous stretches farther west. And from Osaka or Kyoto, Shikoku is very easy to get to. Okayama is a nice place to stay.

Osaka also has some very nice venues if you do your homework and keep your mind open.
by Kim (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: 5th Trip to Japan - Where? 2022/4/24 10:08
I still see many different trips which are possible - but a Hakodate to Tokyo (through Tohoku) really tends to scream out due to fall colors.

From North to South - what I found were highlights from this area included:

Noboribetsu (my favorite onsen water in Japan) - Hakodate (with side trip to Onuma) - Shimokita Peninsula - Hirosaki - Lake Towada (fall colors) - Nyuto Onsen - Tono - Hiraizumi - Matsushima - Yamadera - Dewa Sanzan - Aizu.

Note that the above is not a must do in order - but a pick and choose.
by mfedley rate this post as useful

Re: 5th Trip to Japan - Where? 2022/5/3 22:06
Some great tips, thanks a lot.
I'll do further investigation, a lot to chew one!
by Denis C rate this post as useful

Re: 5th Trip to Japan - Where? 2022/5/5 12:45
Tokyo is always nice.
by Ben (guest) rate this post as useful

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