questions & answers: itinerary check

proposed 14 day itinerary

Proposed 14 day itinerary

Hey!

I am traveling to Japan on 23/03/13 for 14 days. I have already purchased a 14 JR rail pass and I am trying to figure out an itinerary for the first week as I am meeting a friend in Kyoto on Saturday 30/3/13. where we are spending 4 days in Kyoto and then heading to Tokyo for 3 days.

I was thinking the below: but I'm not sure if it is possible time wise, what with changing train lines etc.

23/03 - Arrive in Narita - stay overnight in Tokyo
24/03 - start day with a trip to Karamara, then travel to Nikko where I plan to spend 2 nights.
25/03 - day trip from Nikko to Mito. (staying in Nikko overnight)
26/03 - whole day in Nikko, after which head to Hakone to spend the night.
27/03 - look round Hakone, then head to Osaka to spend the night.
28/03 - head to Shirahama and stay overnight.
29/03 - head to Koy-san, staying overnight in Eko-in temple.
30/03 - look round koy-san before heading to Kyoto to meet friend.

Any suggestions on the above will be greatly appreciated - i am conscious that I will have a backpack with me so will need to ensure there is someone to store my bag, whether it be a locker or by staying somewhere and doing day trips.

Also any suggestions of places to stay would be welcome - so far I only have accommodation for Koy-san arranged.

Thank you!

kellysm_81
kellysm_81

Hi there,

Time-wise it all looks good to me, it is an active itinerary for sure but I don't think you will have to hurry either.
I was just wondering what you will be doing in Mito?

For your backpack, I think that most of the time you will be able to leave it at the accommodation alternatively all stations in Japan come equipped with coin-lockers that can house suitcases.

For accommodations, personally I love using Hostelworld.com for planning most of my hostels in Japan. I know that in Tokyo the Khaosan hostels are very popular with backpackers and many people visit there on their first trip to Japan. There is a small guest house in Nikko called Sumica that has really friendly staff and is only 2 minutes from the train station. J-Hoppers and Hana house are very popular places in Osaka and in Kyoto consider K's House.

Hope this helps,
Daniel

72a8815842aa5db137c135807bd6bb11?s=50&d=mm
Daniel-san
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Hi Daniel

Thank you for the quick response and for the reassurance!

I was planning on checking out Kairakuen Garden in Mito, as I read it was one of the top three gardens. Originally I wanted to try to reach Kanazawa for the Garden there, but I thought with just having a week before having to meet my friend in Kyoto, it was not feasible.

In relation to Mito, how easy is it to get from Nikko to Mito? As i wasn't sure if it maybe easier to do as a day trip from Tokyo? Or whether to do Nikko on Sunday (although i've heard Sunday's can be really busy, which is why I was opting for the Monday) and then on Monday morning going from nikko to Mito, storing my luggage at the train station (provided there are lockers and then heading to to Hakone?

You say all stations have coin lockers - is that even the small ones, like Mito etc.

Thank you

Kelly

kellysm_81
kellysm_81

Sorry i just realized i confused myself there - an alternative would be to go to Mito on Sunday 24/03 with my bag store it at train station while looking round Kairakuen Garden, then get the train to Nikko, stay 2 nights (24/03 and 25/03). Doing Nikko on Monday 25/03, then head to Karamara on 26/03. Either staying overnight in Toyko, or if it is possible staying overnight in Karamara. Before then heading to Hakone.

Thank you again

Kelly

kellysm_81
kellysm_81

Hi Kelly,

Yes I can confirm that even the most remote stations tend to have coin lockers. Just the other day I was at a station that sees less than one train per hour and even had them, I was rather impressed by that.

As to the route between Mito and Nikko. It takes about 200 minutes with 3 transfers. Here are a couple of examples. I would say that it is not the easiest of routes but think it will be doable since you will stay the night in Nikko and won't have to do more travel after that.

In case you can choose: I think the best way to visit Mito is as a day-trip from Tokyo, there is a direct express train from Ueno station that leaves every 30 minutes and reaches Mito in about 75 minutes, it makes for a very smooth ride.

Hope this helps!
-Daniel

72a8815842aa5db137c135807bd6bb11?s=50&d=mm
Daniel-san
Expert_button_2

Thanks Daniel.

Sorry to be a pain, but I have a couple more questions - but on accomdation this time!

I am trying to find some affordable places to stay for 1 person in:

  1. Kamakura on 25/03 (I cannot seem to find anything affordable),

  2. Hakone on 26/03 (I cannot seem to find somewhere affordable and within easy reaching distance - as i will be travelling from Kamakura so arriving late afternoon.

  3. Osaka for 2 nights 27/03 and 8/03 (I have checked out some hostels J-hoppers etc but they are fully booked for my dates)

Any suggestions greatly received.

Thank you

Kelly

kellysm_81
kellysm_81

Hi Kelly!

I did a quick search for you but could not find anything in Kamakura either, what you could do it stay the night in Tokyo and make a day trip to Kamakura, it is not very far and can be reached in less than an hour.

I never stayed in a hostel myself in Hakone, so I don't really have a personal recommendation there. You could try this hostel alternatively you could give this hostel at Gotemba a try. Here is the website for official Japanese youth hostels, most of them do not show up on hostel-world so it is a good alternative resource.

For Osaka try this hostel two of my friends just stayed there and they thought it was pretty good.

Hope this helps,
Daniel

72a8815842aa5db137c135807bd6bb11?s=50&d=mm
Daniel-san
Expert_button_2

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