Aoike Shirakami mountain

Resort Shirakami and Lake Towada 2-day sample trip plan

resort shirakami
The route which Resort Shirakami runs on is one of most scenic train routes in Japan. This is Resort Shirakami Buna train set.

This 2-day trip plan covers these following highlights in Akita and Aomori prefectures.

☑Ride two types of Resort Shirakami
☑1 hour hiking and a tea break at Juniko in Shirakami mountain
☑Biking along Oirase stream
☑Cruise in Lake Towada

Most train and bus rides are covered by JR Pass, JR East Pass Tohoku, JR-East South Hokkaido Rail Pass and JR-Tohoku South Hokkaido Rail Pass.

Overview

On day 1, enjoy riding on Resort Shirakami and visit Aoike. Aomori is the place to stay overnight. And then visit Oirase and Lake Towada on day 2.

(C) CraftMAP

Day 1, Tokyo – Akita – Juniko – Aomori

The Akita Shinkansen (right) and the Tokaido Shinkansen (left) at Tokyo station (C) James Chuang

On the first day of trip, you will take the Akita Shinkansen to Akita and then ride the Resort Shirakami. You will make a stopover at Juniko to see Aoike (Blue pond).

Itinerary

TimePlace and transporation
06:32Tokyo station
(The Akita Shinkansen Komachi 1)
10:24 / 10:51Akita station
(Resort Shirakami 3)
13:07 / 13:15Juniko station
(Konan bus)
13:30Oku-Juniko Parking bus stop
1 hour walking and a tea break
15:30Oku-Juniko Parking bus stop
(Konan bus)
15:45 / 15:57Juniko station
(Resort Shirakami 5)
19:40Aomori station

Highlight

Resort Shirakami

Some of Resort Shirakami are operated by the newest Hybrid train.
Resort Shirakami Aoike train set

This train is operated by three types of train set, Aoike Buna (at the beginning of this post) and Kumagera.

Resort Shirakami Kumagera train set

All three train sets are very nice but the interiors are slightly different. You can enjoy two of these three train sets and find the difference of the trains.

1 hour walking and a tea break at Juniko

Aoike Shirakami mountain
Aoike is only 500m away from the bus stop.

Juniko means “Twelve lakes” in Japansese. But there are 33 lakes in the Shirakami mountain. Aoike is known as most beautiul one in these lakes. Aoike means “Blue pond”. And this is very accessible. It is only 500m away from Oku-Juniko Parking bus stop.

You will walk in the forest and drop by Wakitsubo pond. This small lake is as beautiful as Aoike.

wakitsubo pond
You must see Wakitsubo pond as well.

There are a tea house nearby Wakitsubo pond.

The walking distance is less 2km. It takes about 40 minutes without a tea break time. There is a gift shop at Oku-Juniko Parking bus stop. You can complete everything in 2 hours from 13:30 to 15:30.

Day 2, Aomori – Oirase – Lake Towada – Hachinohe – Tokyo

fall in oirase
You can find the amazing view of Oirase stream in fall season.

On the second day, depart from Aomori station by a bus for Lake Towada. Drop off a bus at Oirase and enjoy biking along a beatiful stream. Enjoy cruising on the Lake Towada after that.

Itinerary

TimePlace and transporation
07:30Aomori station
(JR Bus Tohoku Mizuumi 2)
09:31Oirase Keiryukan
Rent a bike and ride to Nenokuchi along Oirase steam
12:30Nenokuchi (Lake Towada)
(Lake Towada cruise)
13:20Yasumiya (Lake Towada)
Lunch, shopping and sightseeing nearby
15:20Yasumiya
(JR Bus Tohoku Oirase 26)
17:35 / 18:12Hachinohe station
(The Tohoku Shinkansen Hayabusa 42)
21:00Tokyo station

Highlight

Biking along Oirase stream

Oirase
You cannot go on this trail by bike. But you can park a bike and walk on this trail if you like.

This stream comes from Lake Towada and it is located on the way to the lake.

You will rent a bike at Oirase Keiryukan which is the departure point of the road along Oirase stream. The road is slightly uphill but mostly it is flat. The distance is about 14km and the avarage trip time is around 2 hours.

Oirase choshi fall
Choshi fall is one of most popular spots in Oirase stream.

The price of the renral bike is 1,000 yen for 4 hours. If you are afraid to get to Nenokuchi in 2 hours, you can rent an E-bike at 1,500 yen for 4 hours.. It is motor assisted bike. You can rent it at Oirase Keiryukan and return it at Nenokuchi. You don’t need to go back to Oirase Keiryukan.

Lake Towada cruise

Lake towada cruise
Lake Towada cruise ships on the lake like a mirror

There are two types of the cruise. The first one is the trip from/to Yasumiya. The other one is one way trip from Nenokuchi to Yasumiya (or versa). You will take a cruise from Nenokuchi to Yasumiya. Yasumiya is the center of Lake Towada area. There are lots of restraunrants, stores and some sightseeing spots.

If you get to Nenokuchi earlier, you can have a lunch time there and spend more time to see the sightseeing spots around Yasumiya.

Travel cost

All train trips and a bus to Lake Towada are covered by JR Pass, JR East Pass Tohoku JR-East South Hokkaido Rail Pass and JR-Tohoku South Hokkaido Rail Pass.

TripCost
The Akita Shinkansen from Tokyo to AkitaCovered
Resort Shirakami from Akita to JunikoCovered
Konan Bus from Juniko to Oku-Juniko Parking370 yen
Konan Bus from Oku-Juniko Parking to Juniko370 yen
Resort Shirakami from Juniko to AomoriCovered
JR Bus Tohoku from Aomori to Oirase KeiryukanCovered
Rental bike at Oirase stream1,000 yen
(1,500 yen for E-bike)
Lake Towada cruise from Nenokuchi to Yasumiya1,430 yen
JR Bus Tohoku from Yasumiya to HachinoheCovered
The Tohoku Shinkansen from Hachinohe to TokyoCovered
Total cost3,170 yen
An accommodation and meals are not included.

Summary

You have to wake up early in these two days. But this trip covers very popular train and lake. And you can enjoy two activities in the nature.

You may download this itinerary in Excel file (.xlsx file) and customize it. Please download it at the link below:

You can put this trip as a side trip for your stay in Tokyo. You also can do this on the way to Hokkaido.

I hope you can enjoy this trip.

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