questions & answers: general japan travel

traveling around osaka, kyoto, kobe, nara and mt. fuji

Traveling around Osaka, Kyoto, Kobe, Nara and Mt. Fuji


I am planning to travel to Japan around September 2013 for 10 days, I'll be arriving around 8pm on Sep 19th at Kansai Airport. I would like to travel around Osaka, Kyoto, Nara, Kobe and preferrably, if possible go visit Mt. Fuji.

I was thinking of including Tokyo, but I am not sure if this is feasible given that I have only 10 days for this trip. I am also returning back via Kansai Airport on Sep 29th around 7pm.

Could you suggest which pass I should use for:

Osaka - Kyoto - Kobe - Nara - Mt. Fuji
Osaka - Kyoto - Kobe - Nara - Mt. Fuji - Tokyo (if possible for a 10-day trip)

Looking forward to your response.



Hi Anna,

Traveling around in the Kansai Area is generally not very expansive, this includes, Osaka, Kyoto, Nara and Kobe. If you stay in the area you are probably best buying single tickets, this also because you may be using different companies, so one pass would not cover them all.

You wrote that you will have 10 days in Japan, if you plan it right, a couple of days to Tokyo becomes a good possibility, especially if you plan on visiting Fuji too. For instance you could do 6 in Kansai 2 in Kyoto 2 in Osaka 1 for Nara and 1 for Kobe, then 3 days Tokyo + 1 day Fujisan. For this a JR 7 Day pass would be a very good option, you can use it for the return Kansai Tokyo, local JR-Lines and one way to the airport.

Reaching Fuji is best done from Tokyo, a very handy highway bus goes directly from Shinjuku or you can by train that is partially covered by the JR-Pass. The only direct way to go to Fuji from Kansai is by night bus this is around 7000-8000Yen for one way and you can save money on accommodation but if you can"t sleep in the night bus you may loose the next day due to fatigue.

Hope this helps,

Expert button 2

Hello Daniel,

This sounds like a very good idea! I guess, I'd include Tokyo for this trip. :)

Another question, how long is the travel from Osaka to Kobe and Osaka to Nara? I was thinking of doing a day trip for these 2 destinations and just book a hotel in Osaka for maybe 4 days before heading off to Tokyo.

Thanks very much! This is so helpful.



Hi Anna,

It is indeed a very good idea to just book a Hotel in Osaka or Kyoto and make the day trips from there.
It depends where you are staying in Osaka on how long it will take to reach both places. From Osaka (also knows as Umeda) station you can reach Nara within 60 minutes and Kobe in about 30.

When you go to Kobe you probably will want to go to the station called Sannomiya as this is the central station in Kobe and is located in the middle of the city.

Hope this helps too :)

Expert button 2

You're the best! Thanks a lot! :)


hi again!

Finally, I have made my draft itinerary, let me know when is the right time to use the 7-day rail pass. I just wanted to be sure, I made the correct count of the days. :)

Night of Sep 19th Arrival in Kansai Airport (book a hotel in Osaka)
Day 1 - Osaka tour
Day 2 - Osaka tour
Day 3 - Day trip to Kobe
Day 4 - Day trip to Nara
Day 5 - Day Trip to Kyoto (Arashiyama - full day)
Day 6 - Half Day Trip to Northern Kyoto (go back to Osaka then head off to Tokyo at night)

Question 1: What is the train schedule at night for Osaka to Tokyo trip?

Day 7 - Tokyo Tour
Day 8 - Tokyo Tour
Day 9 - Mt. Fuji
Day 10 - Maybe just tour some around Tokyo and prepare to go back to Osaka for departure. My flight is at 7pm on the 29th.

Question 2: What is the safe time to board the train to Osaka assuming my flight is at 7pm?

Question 3: When is the right day to use my 7 Day rail pass so I'll get the most of it during my stay in Japan. Is it on Day 4? I just wanted to make sure I counted the days right :)

I'm also open to your suggestions/comments about my itinerary.

Many thanks in advance! ^_^


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