A challenging 6 day route that covers the best of Japanese road cycling. Taking the back roads through the Southern Alps we avoid the traffic but not the mountain passes of this truly beautiful area as we make our way to the beach on the edge of the Pacific Ocean.
From mountain passes, through the Tengu River Gorge (where we have the option of a boat ride through the gorge itself), past many tea plantations, to the beaches of the Izu peninsula, this is the pinnacle of riding on the isle of Honshu.
Starting from Chino City in Nagano, 2 mountain passes await on this opening day off 70 kilometers. The first is 9 kms long and the second is 8 . Today we stay at a Hot Spring Hotel/Inn in the town of Oshika , located 3 kms from town. This Inn has a spectacular outdoor bath with views looking down the valley into the mountains.
Today is the longest day of the week 140 kilometers with a big climb to start the day. After an easy 8 kilometers to warm up we have a 12km pass to conquer then it is downhill and flat as we follow the Tengu River down towards the ocean. Tonight we stay at a Government run Inn that was built along with a rowing facility along the river. Laundry facilities are available here.
Tea farms are our backdrop for this 95km ride into Shizuoka Prefecture. Look for the Steam engine as it travels along on the opposite side of the river , stop for a tea ceremony as we work our way to Sumatakyo Onsen . Here we stay at a Traditional Inn with both indoor and outdoor baths. Take a walk into the South Alps from here and cross the river on one of the many fishing bridges(suspension bridge) that are common to this area.
Spectacular waterfalls await along the 70 km road today. This morning we are faced with the longest climb of the tour , all together about 30 kilometers to the top, long but not to steep, we follow the SL railway up to the Igawa Dam before our final push over the pass. We stop at the top for some Ramen noodles before decending past beautiful waterfalls on the short run down to Shimizu City and the coast. Here we transfer by Car to our Hotel for the night in Numazu. This 40 kms can be ridden but after 4 days of quiet roads we recommend the car for this section of Urban Japan. Tonight we stay in a western style Hotel and dinner will be at a restaurant of your choice.
The IZU Skyline awaits us today , once we climb the 10 kms onto the ridge we have some spectacular ocean/mountain views as we head to the beach. Mt. Fuji is easily visible in the background as we leave the city of Numazu and provides a backdrop for most of the mornings ride. We drop down to the port town of Matsuzaki before our final 25 kms to Shimoda Town and the beach. Tonight we stay about 100 meters from the beach at a pension.
A round trip along the southern tip of Izu awaits us for our morning ride today, this ride can be down in various distances depending upon how our legs feel. The coast along Irosaki is a must do on the bike , few cars, great ocean views and excellent road conditions make this a great way to end our trip. A 3 hour train ride takes you back to Tokyo from here or spend another night at the beach, its your choice from here.