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First cycling tour in Japan


Maximum Pace
Hardest Crash
Jul 26, 2008
I've avoided offering this, but how about if Marine and her friend simply buy nicer "mama-chari" bikes?

They'd be well under budget, they're geared low (and some have a few gears besides), some are big enough for someone who is 180cm, and they already come with racks, baskets and basic lighting.


Maximum Pace
Oct 16, 2014
@jdd I met a guy in Hokkaido on a mamachari and he had came from Kyoto. But he was as slow as a three-legged tortoise. He also smelt really bad. OP you have three months, you want to camp: fast and light isn't gonna cut it. Lots of places away from the coast that are over two hours away from the nearest open shop after 5pm. You want a touring bike and panniers. Up you budget and count on selling the bike before you leave Japan. Buy second hand and you'll near enough get your money back. With the two of you camping gear is pread across two bikes so you can actually get away with fairly simple luggage set ups.


Apr 30, 2015
I agree with @hat and beard . You need to get as much stuff on the bike. If you are touring from Novemeber and going north to Aomori, you are going to encounter a lot of snow. You will need a really good sleeping bag if you are camping and convenience store clothes is laughable if you plan to ride up there. In the summer, yeah, no worries, but in Aomori in December? I wouldn't want to be wearing cotton T-shirts from 7-11 in those conditions.
The bike @hat and beard linked to looks spot on. It is way over your budget but I guess you could easily sell it for at least 50% what you paid for it when you leave Japan.

Ok that's a good point in fact. If we see that's too difficult we can go back. Yes, I will do that :) Thank you.
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