questions & answers: itinerary check

kyoto, sapporo, shirawakawa-go and osaka

Kyoto, Sapporo, Shirawakawa-go and Osaka

Me and my husband will travel to Japan on 18-24 December 2016. Our flight is from Jakarta to Osaka and Osaka to Jakarta. Is it possible if our itinerary as:
18 Dec depart from Jakarta to Osaka
19 Dec arrive at Osaka in morning, take train to Kyoto and stay one night at Kyoto
20 Dec depart form Kyoto to Shirakawa-go and stay one night at Shirakawa-go
21-23 Dec depart from Shirakawa-go to Sapporo and stay two nights at Sapporo
23 Dec depart from Sapporo by domestic airplane (Jetstar, Peach etc) to Osaka and stay one night at Osaka
24 Dec depart from Osaka to Jakarta

Our questions:
1. Is it possible to run this itinerary
2. How to get to Shirakawa-go from Kyoto? (by JR or any other transportation)
3. How to get to Sapporo from Shirakawa-go? (by JR or any other transportation)
4. How to buy those tickets?

Thank you so much. We can’t wait to go to Japan this winter for our second honeymoon. Actually this Summer we went with our son and enjoy Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto and Fujikawaguchi-ko so much using JR.


Hi there,

While I think that the itinerary is technically possible, I would recommend to carefully review the all the routes you will travel and the travel time involved. I just think there's too much travel time and not enough time to enjoy each area.

To travel to Shirakawa-go take the JR Thunderbird express from Kyoto - Kanazawa and bus from there to Shirakawago.

To get to Sapporo from Shirakawa-go is not easy, I am not aware of any flights in the area you could use.

The train tickets can be purchased in Kyoto and flight tickets can be purchased on the website of the carrier.

Good luck!


It would take you 75 minutes from Shirakawago to Kanazawa, and then over 11 hours on trains to get to Sapporo. It would basically kill the entire day, and seeing that you only have 6 days in Japan it simply is not practical. You can fly on Jet Star from Nagoya though for as low as 6300 yen.


Thank you Daniel-san and Toraneko-san for the useful information. May I ask anothe questions?

  1. How long it takes using JR Thunderbird express from Kyoto - Kanazawa? And bus from Kanazawa to shirakawa-go?
    And do you have an information about the price?

  2. If supposed we took JR from Kyoto to Nagoya and then bus from Nagoya from Shirakawa-go how long it will takes and how much the cost?

If we go to shirakawago, we plan to take an airplane from Nagoya to Sapporo which the cost is low enough. So we need the information of bus/ train to and from Nagoya to Shirakawago

Thank you so much


You can see regular fares, routes and schedules on Hyperdia.

Kyoto - Kanazawa is about 135 minutes. There is no rail access to Shirakawago, only by bus. Kanazawa - Shirakawago is as I mentioned, about 75 minutes. A one-way fare is costs ¥1850. Between Nagoya and Shirakawago there are 2 direct buses per day, costing one-way ¥3600 and taking 3 hours. Otherwise from Nagoya you can take a train to Takayama, and then a bus to Shirakawago, which takes 50 minutes and costs ¥2470 yen. There are about a dozen bus departures every day. For rail, you can see everything you ask for on Hyperdia, and Kyoto-Takayama via Nagoya by rail is a bit over 3 hours.

Good luck.


Dear Toraneko-san,

Thank you so much for the information.
If our time is too limited, which one should I choose? Sapporo or Shirakawago?

Thank you again


Honestly, I would leave Sapporo and Hokkaido for a future trip. Shirakawago can be seen in just a few hours, but there are many other great sights nearby, such as Gokayama. Seeing Kanazawa is well worth it as well - the Korakuen Garden is rated by many as the finest traditional historic gadens in the whole country. Takayama has some good areas to see as well.

Best wishes.


Order your Japan Rail Pass Online

Starting from $279.00 for 7 days of unlimited Japan Rail travel

Please note: we are only able to handle order related enquiries via our online direct support. Commercial advertising is prohibited as per our website terms.