19-day trip + how to go to Kanazawa/Takayama?
First, thanks a lot for all the valuable information you give on this forum.
We are 2 people travelling to Japan from April 4th to April 22nd and have an ambitious itinerary, but have a hard time identifying the trains and the time needed to achieve this (or delete some cities if we spend too much time in the train). Especially on the Takayama / Kanazawa part from Kyoto or Nagoya??
We were planning to take a 14-day (or 21-day??) National JR pass + or maybe several Kansai pass? But we are not sure it is the right choice…
Could you help us identify the right pass(es) and indicate if this itinerary is possible by train?
DAY 1 April 4th : arrival at KIX
DAY 2 April 5th
DAY 3 April 6th
DAY 4 April 7th
DAY 5 - DAY 8 April 8th - April 11th
DAY 9 April 12th
DAY 10 to DAY 13 April 13th - 16th
DAY 12 April 15th
DAY 13 April 16th
DAY 13 – DAY 19 April 17th-April 22nd
That's indeed a very active itinerary, it looks doable though.
In terms of travel, I am tempted to say to go for a 21 day JR Pass and use it from day 2 - day 22nd. This would cover nearly all your planned travel and you would just need one ticket for the entire 3 weeks.
If you are flexible in your planning, then you could also stay the first week in Osaka and Kyoto and then manage with a 14 day JR Pass. Either way, you'll be able to make good savings over normal tickets with both the 14 and 21 day JR Pass.
As for travel around Takayama/Kanazawa, you can also use the JR Pass there (and won't have to use a bus) not only will it cost less, it will also be a lot faster, compared with the old situation, now that the Hokuriku Shinkansen will open in March. Option 1 is definitely the best here.
You may also find the Hakone Free Pass useful in the Hakone Area.
Hope this helps,
Order your Japan Rail Pass Online
Starting from $257.00 for 7 days of unlimited Japan Rail travel