Cycling in Japan

parkr

Warming-Up
Jun 23, 2008
1
0
0
SF
#1
Hi!

we are moving to Tokyo in the next couple of months and were unsure whether to bring our road bikes or mountain bikes with us. Ideally we would like to bring both but we're not sure how much space we'll have. Also, can anyone recommened some good cycling areas / routes for either that we can try out?? Do you have to go out of the city for decent cycling, and if so, will we need a car?? Any advice would be gratefully received!

Thanks.
 
Jan 14, 2007
2,514
213
83
Noda
japanichiban.com
#2
Hi!

we are moving to Tokyo in the next couple of months and were unsure whether to bring our road bikes or mountain bikes with us. Ideally we would like to bring both but we're not sure how much space we'll have. Also, can anyone recommened some good cycling areas / routes for either that we can try out?? Do you have to go out of the city for decent cycling, and if so, will we need a car?? Any advice would be gratefully received!

Thanks.
Depends on a lot of factors. You may want to save the money of shipping them, settle in and buy some new ones when you get here. Up to you.

As for courses in Tokyo.... any of the larger rivers are great for cycling. They almost all have cycling paths.

There are a lot of groups that ride in Tokyo.... http://halffastcycling.com/ is one.
They stick basically to Tokyo and do a different ride each week.
For something more adventurous this club here TCC probably has more interesting tours that get out of Tokyo.

You don't need a car at all.

I'm sure others will chime in with better answers than me also.
 

AlanW

Maximum Pace
Jan 30, 2007
1,214
435
103
Tokyo
#3
MTB vs Road Bike in Japan

Of course the correct answer is to bring both! That's what I did.

However......if you can really only bring one, bring....the road bike.

It pains me somewhat to say that, being an off-road enthusiast to the core. But, although Japan has many, many mountains (about 75% of the land area) they are, in general, just too steep to be good for mountainbiking. There are paths on the mountains, but they are designed with walking/hiking in mind and usually run straight up the hill to the ride-line, then follow the ridge, then come staight back down. There is little contouring. This means that many climbs are unrideable, descents can be super tricky (and also sometimes not rideable) and the trails suffer heavily from erosion in wet season as water courses straight down the trail. There are some decent places to ride, but not enough to swing the decision in favour of the MTB.

On the other hand, the road cycling is truly excellent. There are hundreds (thousands) of kilometres of mountain and coastal roads, the general state of repair is very good, the views are unrivalled, and if you spend a bit of time on the train or by car to get out of Tokyo, the traffic is very light.

Enjoy...

AW.​
 

Naomi

Maximum Pace
Apr 20, 2007
201
6
48
Tokyo
#4
In addition to AlanW' advice,
I really recomend you to bring both of your bikes. There are many nice places to ride(both) in Japan.
If you take British Airways to fly to Japan,you are able to carry a bike for free:)(one bike/each person).I am not sure about other companies though. When I moved to the USA, I sent my MTB with other stuff and carried my road bike by myself. It cost about $90(£45)for a bike at that time ( Continental Air Lines/ in 2008 April)
Anyway AlanW and me always bring our bikes with us to go overseas. It is very easy:)

Naomi