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10 day Japan holiday

Adelaide, Australia
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10 day Japan holiday

Hey guys,

Just looking for some advise from anyone who has travelled to Japan before. My partner and I (mid 20's) are heading over mid to end of November (11th-21st) for the first time. We arrive in Tokyo first (how long would you recommend here?) then we want to catch the JR shinkansen to Kyoto as our next main base. From there we were hoping to do day trips to Nara and Osaka (any other possible day trips?)

We really want to make a trip to Hiroshima and Miyajima too. Would it be worth spending a night at either of these places so we don't rush the day travelling from Kyoto?

Also wondering if people have suggestions for accomodation in Tokyo and Kyoto. We REALLY want to spend a night in a ryokan as well so any suggestions of good ones around the place would be great!

Also, would you recommend a JR 7 day pass or JR 14 day pass for a 10 day trip? We would probably be using it non-stop but not sure if the 14 day pass will be worth the extra money.

Thanks :)

Hong Kong, China
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1. Re: 10 day Japan holiday

You have enough time to spend an overnight an Hiroshima and Miyajima. Ryokans are best planned when you visit places out of the city. If you want something easy, look at Hakone (Mt. Fuji) since it's a stop between Tokyo and Kyoto. There are other onsen destinations as well to consider.

A 7-day JR Pass should work for you. As long as you include at least the one-way Tokyo-Kyoto, and the roundtrip Kyoto-Hiroshima within 7 days, you will come out ahead. If you are flying out of Tokyo, you should be able to plan so you include the ride back to Tokyo as well on your last day.

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for Chicago, Illinois
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2. Re: 10 day Japan holiday

Ryokan information - http://www.japaneseguesthouses.com/

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3. Re: 10 day Japan holiday

I often prepare 10 nights/11 days trips as it seems to be one of the sweet spots for time in Japan. Here is what I always recommend if you arrive in the afternoon on the 1st day:

Day 1: Stay in Tokyo

Day 2: Go to Kyoto after breakfast

Day 3: Kyoto (Western Kyoto and Arashiyama)

Day 4: Kyoto (Eastern Kyoto and Gion)

Day 5: Kyoto (day trip to Nara)

Day 6: Kyoto (Flex day to fit in what you didn't get to see in Kyoto or possible day trip to Nara if day before had bad weather)

Day 7: Go to HIroshima/Miyajima after breakfast,

Day 8: Go to Tokyo after breakfast or lunch depending

Day 9: Tokyo

Day 10: Tokyo

Day 11: Go home :-(

Osaka is nice, but if you are spending time in Tokyo and just have a few days, not sure it is worth it to visit another huge city over Tokyo. It could be a day trip from Kyoto if you have rainy weather perhaps, but certainly no need to change hotels to stay there.

If you can afford it, stay in Miyajima as early in the morning and in the evenings it's so nice and peaceful after most tourists leave. If you are looking to save money, you can stay in Hiroshima.

If you are arriving in the morning and are up for it, I'd recommend going directly to Kyoto after landing in Tokyo and then moving the rest of the schedule up a day so you have one less hotel change.

If you do this route and get a 14 day JR Pass, just for the shinkansen tickets, the price is about the same. So you will come out ahead if you used it a lot in local trains and take Narita Express. Please be aware that with JR Pass, not only can you not take the train that stops the fewest times, but also usually less trains per hour as most of the trains are the ones you cannot take with JR Pass.

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4. Re: 10 day Japan holiday

Yes, your idea of a trip to Hiroshima and Miyajima is well worth the time. Leave Kyoto early morning, do the Peace Park and Museum for a couple of hours upon arrival, have lunch there and then head out to Miyajima for the night. A really cool place to stay, but a splurge, is Iwaso Ryokan. Location is perfect, right by stream, and stunningly beautiful. The food is fresh, Japanese gourmet, amazing. Onsen is peaceful area, and all of the baths have recently been remodeled, there are both indoor and outdoor.


Lunch at the Peace Park. As you exit the museum section, walk straight across the courtyard, under the overpass building, into the next building (I think it's called a research library?). Go down the escalator just inside the entrance, then at the bottom of the escalator is a small restaurant. Good food, good prices, seldom crowded so you can be quickly on your way off to Miyajima.

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5. Re: 10 day Japan holiday

We definitely agree with the posters who recommend spending a night or more on Miyajima. In fact, we prefer to spend more time in fewer places - hate one night stands - but our trips to Japan last 6 weeks so we do visit many locations.

Other possible places to stay in Miyajima (less expensive but not ryokans). We've stayed in both and enjoyed both - they are quite different and offer different experiences.

Sakuraya - we were there this spring for 2 nights - excellent location, friendly management, good views from Japanese style room on fourth floor:



Kikugawa - we were there 6 years ago for 2 nights - excellent dinners, quiet location:


Watford, United...
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6. Re: 10 day Japan holiday

We are very interested in JapanPhotoGuide's reply.

We are in our late 60's not in our 20's; so will your itinerary be also suitable for us?

We are hoping to visit from UK for the first time next year but have not decided whether to do so in the Blossom Season or the Autumn Leaves Season.

Do I gather from your comments that you organise tours. Do you have a website?

Any advice and tips to help our planning will be welcomed.

Thank you

Edited: 27 September 2014, 09:30
7. Re: 10 day Japan holiday

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