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Itinerary Rail Pass Suggestions


I'm looking for some advice on what Rail Pass to purchase for the following itinerary for a group of 4 adults and 3 kids (8-10 yrs old). Is it better to just buy a 14 day JR Pass or maybe a 7 day JR Pass and some Regional Passes? Any guidance would be much appreciated.


4/1 - Arrive Narita
4/1-4/4 Tokyo
4/5 Travel from Tokyo to Kyoto
4/5-4/7 Kyoto
4/8 Travel from Kyoto to Osaka
4/8-4/9 Osaka
4/10 Travel from Osaka to Tokyo
4/10-4/13 Tokyo
4/13 Leave Narita


  • Hi,
    A 14 day pass would be a horrible waste of money for your plans. Actually, doing a Tokyo-Kansai round trip still leaves you a little short from making a 7 day pass pay off also. The most cost effective way for your plans would be a japanican ticket.
    You can take the fastest bullet train (the Nozomi) with it which you can't use with the JR Pass, plus it includes 1 day of free local transportation. It does not include fares between the Kansai cities but overall it still comes up cheaper.

    Since you are already seeing Tokyo, you can largely skip Osaka during the day. After the temples of Kyoto close down around 5 PM, you can zip over to Osaka for the evening. At night the city comes alive and has some great places to see, such as Dotonbori, plus the night views from the Umeda Sky Bldg and Abeno Harukas Bldg are wonderful.
    On another evening, you could also go and see Kobe.

    Instead, I suggest you take at least half a day and see Nara - it was also a former capital and has some of Japan's best sights. Missing the Todaiji Great Buddha would be a tragedy. Nara Park has a lot of other great places, such as Kasuga Shrine, Kofukuji Temple, the Isuien and Yoshikien Gardens, and feeding the many deer in the area.

    You are putting in about 6 full days in Tokyo, which for most people is way more than enough. There are a number of great day trips you can take, such as to Nikko, Kamakura/Enoshima, Izu, Karuizawa, Kusatsu, the Hitachi Seaside Park, the Ushiku Great Buddha, Kawagoe,Hakone, the Fuji 5 Lakes area, and many more. For most of these a Tokyo Wide Pass can be a great money saver.
    For the Fuji area and Kamakura, an Odakyu pass can help.
    Within Tokyo, a 2-3 day subway pass is also a good way to save money.

    As for getting to/from Narita, there are many ways. The cheapest is the 1000 yen bus.
    But another way is the N'Ex round trip ticket.
    Or if you are staying near Ueno, the Keisei Skyliner is the fastest.

    You can see regular fares, routes and schedules on Hyperdia.
    Under "More Options", be sure to uncheck the Nozomi box if on a JR Pass since you can't ride that train using the JR pass.

    You can see previews of some of the best places to see in Japan on:

    There are also loads of other tips on

    Best wishes.
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