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Chaitanya asked

Solo traveling in Japan for 2 months

I'll be traveling solo in Japan for almost two months from the 8th of Jun to 31st of July. And all I've done till now is booked my flight tickets in and out of Narita. That's all.
I know there's a ton of things to do and one of them is to have a rough idea of what places to visit and how to travel between them. I'm planning on buying 2 JR passes of 21 days each and only travel by trains since I don't want to add to the travel expenses. Except for one time which I'll mention later. Please give me feedback. Here's my plan.

[8th June]
- Land in Japan at around 18:00.
- Rest for the day.

[9th June - 11th June]
- Tokyo sight seeing
- Day trip to Nikko, Mt. Fuji

[12th June]
- Train to Sendai
- Sight seeing

[13th June - 14th June]
- Day trips to Matsushima, Shiogama and Yamadera

[15th June]
- Train to Sapporo
- Sight seeing

[16th June - 20th June]
- Day trips to Otaru, Noboribetsu, Jozankei, Sea of Okhotsk, Shikotsu-Toya National Park

[21st June]
- Train to Aomori
- Sight seeing

[22nd June - 23rd June]
- Day trips to Shirakami Sanchi, Mt. Osore, Hirosaki

[24th June]
- Train to Tokyo

[25th June]
- Tokyo sight seeing

[26th June]
- Train to Takayama

[27th June - 30th June]
- Day trips to Kanazawa, Shirakawa, Kamikochi, Matsumoto, Yamanouchi, Kiso Valley

[1st July]
- Train to Kyoto

[2nd July]
- Day trips to Nagahama, Hikone

[3rd July]
- Train to Osaka

[4th July - 5th July]
- Day trips to Kobe, Mt. Koya

[6th July]
- Train to Okayama
- Naoshima Island

[7th July]
- Day trips to Kurashiki, Sensuijima island

[8th July]
- Train to Hiroshima

[9th July - 10th July]
- Day trips to Sandon-kyo, Onomichi, Itsukushima Shrine

[11th July]
- Train to Nagasaki

[12th July - 13th July]
- Day trips to Mt.Inasa, Battleship Island, Huis Ten Bosch

[14th July]
- Train to Fukuoka

[15th July - 17th July]
- Port Moji, Yanagawa, Itoshima, Noko Island, Yobuka Morning Market, Ureshino Onsen, Kokonoe Yume Suspension Bridge, Yufuin Onsen, Beppu Onsen, Kikuchi Valley, Kadoshima Bridge, Kanmon Straits

[18th July]
- Train to Kagoshima

[19th July - 20th July]
- Miyazaki, Sakurajima, Ibusuki, Yukushima

[21st July]
- Train to Tokyo

[22nd July]
- Flight to Okinawa (This is the bit that couldn't fit into JR pass)

[23rd July - 25th July]
- Cape Hedo, Tadake Falls, Kuroshio Tank, Gyokusendo Cave, Habu Museum, Ashibinaa Shopping, Mihama American Village, Blue Cave

[26th July]
- Flight back to Tokyo

[27th July - 31st July]
- Yokohama, Kamakura
- Fly back home on 31st night

Is this too much travel? I realized it only after typing it out.
Please let me know what you think.




1 Answer
answered first by

Is it too much travel? Yes, but that's because you're adding in some things out of order, backtracking and doing some impractical day trips rather than sightseeing. . For example, Nikko day trip and then Sendai should just be Tokyo-Nikko-Sendai.  (BTW - skip Fuji/Hakone IMO), that time of year it is unlikely to give good views.

I would cut some Sapporo time and put it into Aomori.  As a caution, Osorezan is a bit of a mission to get to.

Some of your day-trip ideas, especially in/around Takayama don't make sense.  Better to actually go to Kanazawa, and you travel through the Kiso Valley already, so unless there was something extra you're doing, I'm not sure what the day would be.

Not enough time in Kyoto, drop Osaka.  Kobe??, try Himeji or Okayama for a stay.  I've done Naoshima several different ways, including as a day trip from Okayama before.

You might like to consider staying on Yakushima.  Miyazaki - hmmm, not sure, but Ibusuki is good.

Why fly to Okinawa from Tokyo - look at options from some other places - save a day on the train. You have two days for what is a simple flight - say from Fukuoka.

One other caution - the time of year is rainy season and then early summer.  You will miss most of it with your schedule, but expect hot and humid - that can make things challenging.

And, yes, I have been to a lot of the places on your list (multiple times), and taken people there - some are nice and easy, others are harder.  Be prepared to be in locations with zero English.

Patrick,  Japan Custom Tours

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