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Thread: Route advice - 10 days ex-Tokyo

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    Default Route advice - 10 days ex-Tokyo

    Greetings all,

    A few friends and I are hoping to come over form Australia for our first bike tour of Japan in October this year. We've been in contact with Rental819 and hope to be hiring some nice sports bikes ex-Tokyo, for about 10 days.

    I'd really appreciate suggestions on a great route for the trip. To give you a bit of background, we're all very experienced sportsbike riders who cover 10,000km or so annually on multi-day runs. We tend to spend 8 hours a day in the saddle (including breaks), so I'm probably looking for around 3,000km worth of riding. We have a big focus on finding really good twisties that are as free as possible of traffic and cops, but are obviously happy to put in some miles on an expressway to get to them.

    Any advice much appreciated. A few tips on sites to find decent accommodation would be good too.

    Thanks in advance, guys.


    Rex

  2. #2

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    Welcome.

    Make sure you include Okutama, IZU, Yamanashi ( drop into Apexmoto if you have the time and i will show you some local roads ).
    CMAC, JamesK, Twinrider and Guy Jin.. are some of the prolific riders who could give more precise advice.
    Apexmoto Inc - Dyno tuning, engine/chassis/suspension upgrades, repairs, shaken, tires & changing with balancing, graphics printing, stickers, media blasting, painting & powder coating.

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    October, weather wise, will be great for a tour like that. In 10 days you can cover most of the recommended twisties in the surrounding prefectures. In addition to Jav's recommendations, I think 10 days could be enough to hit most of the following areas: Bandai, Minami Aizu, Nasu Shiobara, Nikko, Kusatsu, Nagano, Nozawa, Ikaho, Hachigatake, Fuji.
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    Default Route advice - 10 days ex-Tokyo

    Coming in October consider going to the motoGP in motegi.
    Getting to the Summit is Optional, Returning home is mandatory
    Life begins at 155mph

  5. #5

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    Thanks for some quick responses guys - much to investigate.

    Cheers

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    Heading to bed now, but I'll post up some suggestions soon.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaguar View Post
    We have a big focus on finding really good twisties that are as free as possible of traffic and cops, but are obviously happy to put in some miles on an expressway to get to them.
    This is easy to do, you just need to stay away from population centers as much as possible, sticking to mountain roads and other isolated areas. The earlier you come in October the better if you plan to ride in northern Japan, you could even comfortably ride in Hokkaido if it's the beginning of the month.

    I rate Hokkaido and Kyushu the highest, stunning scenery and excellent roads. If the timing/logistics don't work out for Hokkaido, then I would recommend you set aside a big chunk of time for Kyushu.

    Shikoku and Honshu also offer great riding, again the basic key is to stick to the mountain roads/isolated areas. You can't go wrong if you do that. Have a look through the ride reports, heaps of info there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Twinrider View Post
    This is easy to do, you just need to stay away from population centers as much as possible, sticking to mountain roads and other isolated areas. The earlier you come in October the better if you plan to ride in northern Japan, you could even comfortably ride in Hokkaido if it's the beginning of the month.

    I rate Hokkaido and Kyushu the highest, stunning scenery and excellent roads. If the timing/logistics don't work out for Hokkaido, then I would recommend you set aside a big chunk of time for Kyushu.

    Shikoku and Honshu also offer great riding, again the basic key is to stick to the mountain roads/isolated areas. You can't go wrong if you do that. Have a look through the ride reports, heaps of info there.
    Kyushu is indeed awesome with fantastic weather, great roads, and low population density. I still have not grown tired of touring through here. I'd also include Shikoku as an amazing touring destination as well. Both are easily accessed by ferry from Tokyo or Osaka.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Twinrider View Post
    This is easy to do, you just need to stay away from population centers as much as possible, sticking to mountain roads and other isolated areas. The earlier you come in October the better if you plan to ride in northern Japan, you could even comfortably ride in Hokkaido if it's the beginning of the month.

    I rate Hokkaido and Kyushu the highest, stunning scenery and excellent roads. If the timing/logistics don't work out for Hokkaido, then I would recommend you set aside a big chunk of time for Kyushu.

    Shikoku and Honshu also offer great riding, again the basic key is to stick to the mountain roads/isolated areas. You can't go wrong if you do that. Have a look through the ride reports, heaps of info there.
    With only 10 days, riding 300km a day, and trying to avoid long runs on the expressway to get from one set of twisties to another, these guys are going to have to make some choices about what parts of Japan to focus on. Doing both Hokkaido and Kyushu would be virtually impossible. Also, even by the start of October it can be pretty chilly up in Hokkaido. And finally, even if they had enough time and warm weather, Hokkaido is simply not where you go in Japan for lots of twisties. I'm not saying there are zero twisties in Hokkaido, but other islands have a lot more twisty roads, and a lot closer together. So, for a start, I would rule out Hokkaido.

    Next, I would also rule out most of northern Honshu, certainly anything north of, say, the Bandai-Azasuma Skyline. Again, it's not that there aren't any good roads north of there. It's that they're too far apart, and too far away from all the great riding further south, to be the best choice for these guys.

    Fortunately, that leaves plenty of fantastic riding. Rex, I'll list a few names here, and then later on, if you want, I can try to put together a draft route (including lodging) for Garmin navi devices (e.g., Zumo or Nuvi) that you can either use as-is, just get some ideas from, or ignore entirely.

    Actually, there are too many good roads for me to list even just the "big name" ones here all at once. So, here is just the start of a list of some good twisties to do, starting with the Bandai-Azasuma and heading basically from northeast to southwest. I'll add to it in new comments later on. Remember that this list is not even scratching the surface. Twinrider is absolutely right that so long as you stay out of the cities, there are great roads everywhere in Japan.

    Honshu:

    Bandai-Azasuma Skyline: http://goo.gl/maps/T1NQ1

    Bandai-Azasuma Lakeline: http://goo.gl/maps/aOh5y

    Bandai-san Gold Line: http://goo.gl/maps/Fstxf

    Nichien Toll Rd: http://goo.gl/maps/pWAht

    Rt.120 (Iroha-zaka) http://goo.gl/maps/vuyq9 (Note that this road splits into an uphill road and a separate downhill road. Do both!)

    Ashinoko Skyline: http://goo.gl/maps/qR9Au

    Izu Skyline: http://goo.gl/maps/1M9s7

    Nishi-Izu Skyline: http://goo.gl/maps/q2qAC

    Rt. 299: http://goo.gl/maps/r35RO

    Venus Line: http://goo.gl/maps/3H64F

    Rt. 136: http://goo.gl/maps/3IsNS

    Rt. 512 (Oku-Biwako Pkwy): http://goo.gl/maps/nlGJi (Note: it's one-way, heading north only)

    Ryujin Skyline: http://goo.gl/maps/siu8y

    Ise-Shima Skyline: http://goo.gl/maps/YfFzH

    Rt. 31: http://goo.gl/maps/jhEKq (and the rest of Shodoshima island -- technically not Honshu, but whatever)

    Rt. 34: http://goo.gl/maps/N3hFa (and the rest of the loop around Mt. Daisan with Rts. 45, 158, and 30)

    Rt. 242 (Akiyoshidai Rd.) http://goo.gl/maps/L8jvs
    Last edited by Guy Jinbaiquerre; 31-01-14 at 06:13 PM.
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    Shikoku:

    Minami-Awa Sun Line: http://goo.gl/maps/1bqP1

    Rt. 203 (Muroto Skyline): http://goo.gl/maps/1IwsS

    Rt. 47: http://goo.gl/maps/Nbq2R

    Kamegamori Rindo (paved): http://goo.gl/maps/feSMW

    Rt. 348: http://goo.gl/maps/QDrCD

    Rt. 383: http://goo.gl/maps/wsGc5 (and other roads around Shikoku's karst plateau)


    I'll do Kyushu later. Also, anyone who has a favorite road I left out (and I left out tons of roads!), please post it up.
    Last edited by Guy Jinbaiquerre; 31-01-14 at 01:08 PM.
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    Great suggestions Guy.

    Some of my favorite roads, all within 2~3 hours slab from Tokyo. They make for great 900+km days :)

    South west of the Bandai area, I recommend a big loop via Rt 401, Rt 289, Rt 352 and Rt 252. Doesn't have to be a loop, but all great roads. http://goo.gl/maps/s8TPX

    Leading to Venus Line, I also recommend Tateshina Skyline http://goo.gl/maps/JT2iw

    Rt. 299 (Bushu Meruhen Kaido) is another great road. http://goo.gl/maps/dQ0W4

    Tsumagoi Skyline http://goo.gl/maps/v7sVt

    Manza Highway http://goo.gl/maps/9ycT1

    Rt 292 http://goo.gl/maps/kQlvB

    Rt. 471 and Rt 502 http://goo.gl/maps/m19WI
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    Default Route advice - 10 days ex-Tokyo

    Quote Originally Posted by rider2371 View Post
    Great suggestions Guy.

    Some of my favorite roads, all within 2~3 hours slab from Tokyo. They make for great 900+km days :)

    South west of the Bandai area, I recommend a big loop via Rt 401, Rt 289, Rt 352 and Rt 252. Doesn't have to be a loop, but all great roads. http://goo.gl/maps/s8TPX

    Leading to Venus Line, I also recommend Tateshina Skyline http://goo.gl/maps/JT2iw

    Rt. 299 (Bushu Meruhen Kaido) is another great road. http://goo.gl/maps/dQ0W4

    Tsumagoi Skyline http://goo.gl/maps/v7sVt

    Manza Highway http://goo.gl/maps/9ycT1

    Rt 292 http://goo.gl/maps/kQlvB

    Rt. 471 and Rt 502 http://goo.gl/maps/m19WI
    OMG. I'm getting a rider's orgasm just looking at this. All absolutely mind-blowing bike travels. October is perfect timing!

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    Quote Originally Posted by rider2371 View Post
    Some of my favorite roads, all within 2~3 hours slab from Tokyo. They make for great 900+km days :)
    That's neat how you marked them all as routes in Google Maps. I should do that instead of just zooming in on the road in question.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Jinbaiquerre View Post
    That's neat how you marked them all as routes in Google Maps. I should do that instead of just zooming in on the road in question.
    Actually you encouraged me to get off my lazy ass and use Google Maps to post useful links, instead of blurting a string of area names. Then I thought, might as well show the routes while I'm at it
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    Quote Originally Posted by rider2371 View Post
    Rt. 299 (Bushu Meruhen Kaido) is another great road. http://goo.gl/maps/dQ0W4
    Called it first!

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Jinbaiquerre View Post
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Jinbaiquerre View Post
    Called it first!
    Yep, must've missed it
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    Excellent suggestions, will try some for myself ! Brilliant post Guy and Rider, thanks.

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    Kyushu:

    Rt. 111 (Aso Panorama Line): http://goo.gl/maps/fJOKK

    Rt. 265: http://goo.gl/maps/KfglD

    Rt. 387 (Kakinoki-Toge Rd): http://goo.gl/maps/tXSOh

    Rt. 28 through Hiraodai: http://goo.gl/maps/b2nHM

    Rt. 500 and Rt. 418 to Aburagi Dam: http://goo.gl/maps/8jjky

    Rt. 11 (Yamanami Hwy): http://goo.gl/maps/NMlSx

    Rt. 1: http://goo.gl/maps/btcPw

    Rt. 30: http://goo.gl/maps/wcztE

    Ibusuki Toll Rd: http://goo.gl/maps/gwkg4

    Rt. 57: http://goo.gl/maps/xktB3

    Rt. 389: http://goo.gl/maps/5CxvF

    Nita Touge: http://goo.gl/maps/jBzDe

    Rt. 383 (On Hirado, technically not Kyushu): http://goo.gl/maps/8P3Wy

    If I left out one of your favorites, post it up!
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    In addition to Guy's Kyushu recommendations, here are a few more.

    Farm Road Waita and Sky Farm Road Hita http://goo.gl/maps/m7eTJ
    Can't recommend these two highly enough!! When we found them last time around, we ended up riding back and forth a good few times. 55km of pure grin! Absolutely fantasticulous!

    Green Road Minami Aso http://goo.gl/maps/9K7Kz
    Great road to get out of Kumamoto toward Aso from the south.

    Rt. 12 http://goo.gl/maps/Nzz6Y

    Rt. 339 (Milk Road) http://goo.gl/maps/xWHG6

    Rt. 28 > Rt. 624 (Maple Farm Rd) > Rt. 702 > Rt. 43 (all in Oita, as opposed to Rt. 28 in Fukuoka that Guy recommended) http://goo.gl/maps/vAaGi
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  20. #20

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    I'll also be doing a 10 day tour, and from looking around, I'll probably be spending most of my time on Honshu, and perhaps in Kyushu too. I was having a quick look at those roads mentioned above on Google maps, they look like some really nice twisty roads!

    I'll be there late May - early June, hopefully some nice warm weather

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