questions & answers: using the japan rail pass

best way to travel around these places?

Best Way to Travel Around These Places?

I'm planning to start out in Kyoto and end my travel near Narita Airport, but in-between stop for a night in Takayama and Gokayama, as well as a day-trip or a couple of hours in Shirakawago.
I've been getting really confused by the maps and such - my plan so far is to travel from Kyoto to Gokayama, and stop by Shirakawago on the way to Takayama and then head back to Narita Airport (just by looking at a map of Japan). However I'm not sure about the best ways to travel via JR.
Would you be able to help?
Thanks a lot!
Cheers :)


Hi there,

From reading your forum post I get the idea that you wish to visit Gokayama and Shirakwawago and how to best visit it using the JR.

Good to know may be that there got two approaches to Gokayama from Kyoto and in either approach the last part is traveled by express bus. The first option is to travel from Kyoto - Kanazawa and take the bus from there. The other option is to go to Takayama and take the bus from there.

My advise would be to travel from Kyoto - Kanazawa, as there is a short and direct train connection between both cities. From Kanazawa take an express bus to Gokayama and Shirakawago. Once you feel that you've seen to area of don't have time left, I'd suggest taking a bus to Takayama and from there the train to Tokyo. As Takayama is closer to Tokyo than Kanazawa. This will also add a little extra variety to your trip and both Kanazawa and Takayama are great places to make a stop at.

You could also consider going directly to Takayama, If you have a lot of luggage and make your base there for a couple of nights. This would remove the need to carry your luggage with you all the time.

Hope this helps!


Thanks a lot Daniel! :)


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