questions & answers: using the japan rail pass

17 days in japan

17 days in Japan

Thank You in advance for Your help.
We arrive to Osaka Kansai Airport on September 15th (8:15 in the morning)
September 17th - from Osaka to Hiroshima
September 18th - from Hiroshima to Himeji and to Kyoto.
We will be 5 days in Kyoto during which we want to visit Koya and Nara.
September 23th - from Kyoto to Kanazawa and then to Toyama
September 24th - from Toyama to Matsumoto (Alpine Route - so JR Pass won't help on local trains and buses there).
September 25th - from KMatsumoto to Nagoya (and from Nagoya to Ise and back)
September 25th - from Nagoya to Tokyo
6 days in Tokyo when we want to visit Nikko Fuji (and 5 lakes) and Kamakura.
October 2nd - from Tokyo to Narita airport and home.

I made an approximate calculation and it seems like even 21 day pass is worth it. But my main worry, that some of the trains do not accept JR pass. Llike NOZOMI train on Tokaido line, and we have most of journeys there (Osaka-Hiroshima-Kyoto, Nagoya - Tokyo). From Kyoto to Nara and from Tokyo to Nikko JR trains are not ideals as well.

Please, advise if JR pass is recommended and which one if Yes.

Thank You again,



Hi Igor,

I would definitely recommend using a JR Pass for your itinerary. As you say, you can make savings even with the 21 day JR Pass. I see that your main concern is not being able to use the Nozomi Shinkansen. You can however use other Shinkansen trains on the Tokaido Shinkansen and other Shinkansen lines, such as the Hikari and Sakura Shinkansen. These are the same as the Nozomi but make a couple more stops on the way. You can even use the Shinkansen for part of the way to Nikko (up to Utsunomiya).

While the JR Pass does cover the major part of your travels by far, some areas my require additional tickets. Such as to Fuji Five Lakes.

Hope this helps,


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