Help me plan my tour of Japan!

Sep 12, 2018
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#1

Hey guys, so I've been working out a route for my month long bicycle tour of Japan and this is what I've come up with so far. Looking for input on the route, places to check out, things I might be missing or things / sections of my route that could be cut out to save time. Most of the route came from the Japan cycling "length of Japan" route, so a lot of it is a mystery to me! Don't really want to be stressing about falling behind on my schedule so much that I can't stop and enjoy places and I'd like to fit in a rest day in Kyoto and one in Osaka. Right now I'm planning to take at least one ferry (kitakyushu-Osaka.)

Check out the map I've been working on:

Right now the plan is
Oct 2-4
Tokyo
Oct 4-7
Tokyo - Sendai
Oct 8 - 11
Sendai to Numata
Oct 12 - 15
Numata - Kyoto
Oct 16 - 21
Kyoto - Kitakyushu
Oct 22 - 25
Round trip to the Takachiho gorge in miyazaki, ferry from kitakyushu to osaka (or all the way to tokyo if I'm behind)
Oct 26 - 29
Osaka - Tokyo


Thanks for any input you might be able to provide!
 

kiwisimon

Maximum Pace
Dec 14, 2006
2,658
477
103
Japan
#2
How much experience do you have and what's your fitness level like? Are you carrying accommodation and cooking gear or are you staying at hotels etc?
 

Kangaeroo

Speeding Up
Jan 24, 2018
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#3
Others may have had a different time, but in my experience the trip between Osaka and Tokyo is not overly scenic (to put it nicely). It might be better to spend longer getting to Osaka via the Shimanami Kaido and perhaps putting your bike in a bag and catching the train from Osaka to Tokyo?
Shimanami Kaido is not a particularly challenging ride, but it is beautiful and caters well to cyclists. Scenery is certainly much nicer than most of the trip between Osaka and Tokyo.
 
Likes: thomas

jdd

Maximum Pace
Hardest Crash
Jul 26, 2008
2,512
639
133
Kanazawa
#4
I don't know the area at all, but instead of swinging down thru Osaka on the way to Himeji, I'd begin by seeing if there was a route to the north, avoiding the city itself.

While you probably want to see/pass by Mt. Fuji, other than that most of your dark blue (southern) course between Kyoto and Tokyo is something I'd skip for the train
 
Likes: Kangaeroo

baribari

Maximum Pace
May 28, 2010
427
80
48
Fukushima
#5
It might just be me, but I think you're doing yourself no favors skipping upper Tohoku and Hokkaido. Go to Sapporo and then take the ferry! No bike tour is quite complete without a day on a boat...
 
Likes: Kangaeroo
Sep 12, 2018
3
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#6
How much experience do you have and what's your fitness level like? Are you carrying accommodation and cooking gear or are you staying at hotels etc?
I've done a 3 week tour of the washington / oregon / cali coast, I'm a very strong cyclist. I'll be bringing my hammock to camp and a small stove, but I don't know how much I'll end up actually cooking!

Others may have had a different time, but in my experience the trip between Osaka and Tokyo is not overly scenic (to put it nicely). It might be better to spend longer getting to Osaka via the Shimanami Kaido and perhaps putting your bike in a bag and catching the train from Osaka to Tokyo?
Shimanami Kaido is not a particularly challenging ride, but it is beautiful and caters well to cyclists. Scenery is certainly much nicer than most of the trip between Osaka and Tokyo.
I don't know the area at all, but instead of swinging down thru Osaka on the way to Himeji, I'd begin by seeing if there was a route to the north, avoiding the city itself.

While you probably want to see/pass by Mt. Fuji, other than that most of your dark blue (southern) course between Kyoto and Tokyo is something I'd skip for the train
Shiminami Kaido is already on this route! Osaka-Tokyo would be the way back. I figure at least the portion around Mt. Fuji would be quite scenic, and unfortunately I can't really afford the extra expense of a train + the bag to bring my bike on the train just to save myself a few hundred km. Shinkansen even from Osaka to Tokyo would be $150 CAD, plus maybe $100 for a bike bag?? Like I said, if I were to skip that portion I'd take the ferry from kitakyushu all the way to Tokyo.
It might just be me, but I think you're doing yourself no favors skipping upper Tohoku and Hokkaido. Go to Sapporo and then take the ferry! No bike tour is quite complete without a day on a boat...
It's going to be october. My understanding is that Hokkaido would be very cold.
 
Sep 12, 2018
3
0
1
25
#7
I don't know the area at all, but instead of swinging down thru Osaka on the way to Himeji, I'd begin by seeing if there was a route to the north, avoiding the city itself.

While you probably want to see/pass by Mt. Fuji, other than that most of your dark blue (southern) course between Kyoto and Tokyo is something I'd skip for the train
fair point about Osaka though, I do want to spend a day or two there but I could always do that on the way back, and if I don't plan on stopping in Osaka on the first pass there's not much sense in going through the hassle of riding though it...