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Contemporary art itinerary in June

about 5 years ago
2 responses

This will be my second trip to Japan, focusing on contemporary art since I will be traveling with my niece who is a 21 year old art college student just graduating in June.
Planning on purchasing 2-14 day passes for us. I have already done a lot of JR pass research and think this itinerary is doable to show her the main attractions for her interests, with some background of Japanese culture.

Also: Is it worth it to purchase the first class pass option, or will it be too boring for a young person? (She lives in New York City and is used to subway travel there. I am "older" and prefer a more comfortable experience. )

Here is the plan:

June 2: Arrive Tokyo Narita 4:40pm
June 2-7: Tokyo 5 nights
June 7-9: Kyoto 3 nights
June 9: to Hiroshima, stay overnight Miyajima
June10-12: Naoshima (Bennesse art island) via Okayama 2 nights
June12-14: Kanazawa via Shin-Osaka- Sanyo Shinkansen to Thunderbird Limited Express to Kanazawa- 2 nights
June 15: early return to Tokyo, then Narita for flight at 3:40 pm

Thanks for your help and comments!

12232 posts
about 5 years ago
Expert button 2

Hi there,

Looks like a very nice trip, looking at it time wise I think you can see a lot but with a relaxed pace.

On your first trip in Japan did you travel by train? The seats on limited express trains or Shinkansen (Bullet Train) are already very relaxed and in many countries would be considered first class. I once traveled on the Hikari Railstar Shinkansen and the person sitting besides me (I think he was Canadian) asked me three times if I was sure this was not first class. So if you decided to opt for the First Class (Green Class) option you really will be traveling in style. The biggest difference with 2nd class is that you have even more space and there rarely is anyone else in the train compartment.

Only thing I could remark on would be the travel on the last day. The trip from Kanazawa to Narita takes about 5h38m and you would have to be on the train before 8.00 for sure.
Here's what the trip on the day would look like. In case you want to take it easy you could stay your last day in the city Narita itself which has very nice temples and you also a local art museum.

Hope it helps!

2 posts
about 5 years ago

Thanks, Daniel.

I am relieved to know that you think this is a "relaxed pace" as it seems to me like we are packing in a lot, considering the many hours spent traveling between cities. Yes, I traveled before by train, which was impressive. I think you are right about the 2nd class option, which will be fine for my niece.

As for the last day, I see your point on staying in Narita the night before. I figured we would have many hours sitting on the plane home on Saturday and wanted to maximize our time in Kanazawa. Normally I would allow extra time for unforeseen circumstances before getting to an airport. But the Japan Rail is so meticulously timed that I have faith we can make it.! I will definitely consider this option. And I loved the link on the train schedules. Somehow I missed that link before.

With gratitude,
Julie's Aunt

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