questions & answers: itinerary check

10 days in japan with ferry to south korea

10 days in Japan with ferry to South Korea

We are grp of 15 friends (all retired) arriving in Osaka on 27th Aug 2012.
We wish to visit Osaka, Tokyo, Kyoto, Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Mt. Fuji and then take a ferry to S. Korea.
We will spend 6 days in Korea and return to Osaka.
Frm Osaka we will fly back to India.

If I buy a 7 day JR Pass,

  1. Does it include a Ferry crossing to S. Korea ?
  2. If I start my journey in Osaka how can I best use my JR pass to visit Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Kyoto,
    Tokyo, Mt. Fuji?
  3. Can u suggest a 7 day route plan?
Rekha Barve
Rekha Barve

Hi there!

Sounds like a great trip! Here are some answers:

Does it include a Ferry crossing to S. Korea ?

No - the Japan Rail Pass does not cover the ferry crossing to S. Korea

If I start my journey in Osaka how can I best use my JR pass to visit Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Kyoto, Tokyo, Mt. Fuji? Can u suggest a 7 day route plan?

I think as you're going to travel from Hakata to Busan (I think), then you'll be best to end your rail travel in Kyushu. This means that the best approach will be to travel up to Tokyo on arrival, and then gradually travel down the country, stopping at all your itinerary locations en route. I have assumed you intend to visit Hakone for viewing Mt Fuji and have the following route plan:

  1. Kansai airport > Tokyo: ¥15630, (264mins, 613km)
  2. Tokyo > Odawara: ¥3640, (35mins, 83km)
  3. Odawara > Kyoto: ¥11750, (160mins, 429km)
  4. Kyoto > Osaka: ¥1680, (27mins, 42km)
  5. Osaka > Hiroshima: ¥9950, (108mins, 345km)
  6. Hiroshima > Nagasaki: ¥9950, (108mins, 345km)
  7. Nagasaki > Hakata: ¥9950, (108mins, 345km)

TOTAL: ¥62550 for 7 legs

Therefore, with a 7 day rail pass (¥28,300) you'll make a saving of at least ¥34,250 over individual tickets. By following the route I lay out above, aside from the initial hop up to Tokyo, you'll keep your journey times between cities to a minimum, and maximise your time exploring Japan.

For Hakone you should travel to Odawara with the JR Pass and from there purchase the Odakyu Hakone Freepass which will give you free travel up to and around the lakes on all the rail, funicular and cable cars that travel around the area. You can read more about the Odakyu Hakone Freepass online.

While you are in Tokyo you can also use the Japan Rail Pass on all JR trains in Tokyo. (Here's a map of JR lines in Tokyo for reference).

As an extra tip, you mention that you'll have to travel back up to Osaka from Hakata once you return from S. Korea. A 7 day rail pass is ¥28,300 and a 14 day rail pass is ¥45,100 with a difference in price of ¥16,800. The ticket price of the trip from Hakata to Kansai Airport is ¥15,840 (itinerary), so if you think you need a little more flexibility (eg, 8 days in Japan rather than 7), then you could opt for a 14 day Japan Rail Pass with only a ¥960 difference in the overall price of your rail travel.

You can look up train timetables and costs at the hyperdia travel planning website and learn how to use Hyperdia for Japan Rail Pass holders through our video blog.

Hope this helps!

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mari
Expert_button_2

THanx a million. This is definitely going to help!

Rekha Barve
Rekha Barve

Hi,
Just as a note on the itinerary, it's 7 days for a breakneck 6 destinations. Some organization is needed.
Since you are already seeing Tokyo, you can largely skip Osaka during the day. After the temples of Kyoto close down around 5PM, you can zip over to Osaka for the evening. At night the city comes alive and has some great places to see, such as Dotonbori, plus the night views from the Umeda Sky Bldg, and Abeno Harukas Bldg are wonderful.
Kyoto is worth more time, but given the pace, it'd be better to spend 1½ days in Kyoto, with another ½ day for Nara. After Kyoto in the evening go to Osaka.

For Hiroshima, start very early in the morning and spend about ¼ of the day for Hiroshima City (Peace Park/Museum, castle, Shukkeien Garden) and ¾ of the day for Miyajima.
For Miyajima, please note that there are 2 ferry companies there - make sure you go to the JR one if you want to use your pass.
If that is still not enough, there are many places between or close to Hiroshima. Just a bit past Miyajima is Iwakuni with its iconic historical bridge and mountaintop castle.

In terms of history and varied points of interest, Nagasaki is really the most interesting city on the island. It is worth a couple days to see the city, and another day to see areas nearby like Shimabara/Unzen or whatever interests you.
For Nagasaki, the best sights are the Peace Park/Museum - but if you see the one on Hiroshima you might skip it - Glover Garden, Dejima, and Koshibyo Shrine. Gunkanjima would also be well worth seeing, but it takes 3 hours and your schedule really doesn't allow it. And at night be sure to go see Mt. Inasa at night for a spectacular night view over the city.

For Fukuoka, there are many open parks, shopping, seaside historical areas, and urban neon. See this site as a good guide.

For Fukuoka, don't miss the Nanzoin Temple which is one of Japan's finest yet almost totally unknown to the outside world and completely free!
Look into a Fukuoka Tourist City Pass also.
You can also see a lot of previews on the best there is to see here.

Lastly, to go to Korea, there is the Beetle hydrofoil as well as the ferry. The Beetle is WAY faster (only a few hours) instead of taking 8 hours.

Toraneko
Toraneko

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