I hope some of you might be able to help me! Unfortunately, I have 3 friends that are quite familiar with Japan (a japanese who now lives in NY, a french who has lived in Tokyo for years, and another japanese who's lived all over & just recently returned to live in Japan) - and they ALL seem to have differing opinions on what itinerary would be best! OK, so with 9 night/10 days (arrive NRT 2 PM and departure is at 4 PM) so it's really 1/2 day on arrival & departure days.
Here's what I have:
-Nights 1-2 Tokyo
-Day3 take early train to Kyoto
-Nights 3-5 Kyoto (and possible day trip?)
-Day4 take early train to Hiroshima - spend the morning visiting museum & a-bomb dome. Then take ferry to Miyajima - relax afternoon until ryokan dinner
-Night6 Miyajima @ Iwaso! (so excited about this)
-Day 7 head to Hakone - this is the question mark point. I wanted to visit Hakone, but some said no need with the time in Kyoto & Iwaso ryokan experience. Also will probably take a Kamakura day trip from Tokyo..and also, if we did do Hakone at this point, not sure what time we should leave Miyajima
-Night 7 Hakone
-Nights 8-9 Tokyo - this would the point for a day trip to Kamakura
So some of the options were to skip Hakone and spend the last 3 nights in Tokyo...or even spend 2 nights in Hakone and only last night before departure will be in Tokyo...
Should we scratch Hakone or keep it?
A little background - my DH & I are in our early/mid 30s...love traveling but I really don't prefer the spend 1 nt here-then 1 nt in another city-then 1 nt in another city-... You get the picture. I always say my college "backpacking" days are over.
Thoughts? Thanks in advance for your insights!