Warren
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I have completed 100,000km touring Japan by motorcycle. I made this map initially just so I knew which roads I had explored because it got confusing with the extraordinary density of roads in this country.

It was never intended to be a guide for others but I decided to share it because information about riding in Japan for foreigners is limited and besides now I have seen more of this country then most people so this map actually has some good info.

If you open the map on to a new tab/page (use the brackets icon top right of map) then you can see the map legend and easy pan and zoom. Clicking on roads will usually give some description. Hotels are not positioned precisely and are just my own records of where I stayed previously.

As you can see there are good roads everywhere in Japan as you might expect in a land of mountains as well there are superb viewpoints everywhere.

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If you are wondering where to ride first then anywhere away from big cities is enjoyable. Shikoku and the inland sea and Kyushu are my favourites but there are fabulous roads everywhere else. Hokkaido despite the marketing hype offers less twisty roads being flat farm land but Tohoku is spectacular so a ride north is as good as going south.

I have written much more detail about how and when to ride Japan in my Guide to Motorcycle touring Japan that tries to cover everything you need to know.

13 Comments

  1. Hey thank you so much !!

  2. Thank you a lot from this great map.
    I just finished one week long motorcycle trip in middle Japan. I partly used this guide to plan my route and I cannot thank you enough from the all great tips and routes that you have marked in here. I would have probably missed many great routes if not thanks to this guide!!!

  3. Jon Stevens

    I’m shocked with the news Warren, stay strong in mind and body and I agree with you that you will be riding bikes in future for sure. Determination to succeed is in your nature I know that.

  4. Hi Warren,
    Really appreciate your effort and dedication. A really wonderful act.
    I have been a serious follower of the routes you have highlighted. and tried many.
    Really enjoy the local roads you have selected.
    Thanks again.

    • Thanks Raghu, appreciate your feedback.
      Unfortunately no updates to my map in 2022 as I am unable to ride this year due to medical situation.
      Sure hope I will be able to ride more of Japan again in the future.

  5. thanks for all that!!!
    I want to make a trip to Japan and travel by motorcycle maybe…. not sure because have no idea. I ride here in the Usa.
    I also want to bring my painting equipment. Im an artist. Can you buy a motorcycle in Japan to travel ?

    • Hi Clark,

      You will need a residential address to buy a motorcycle in Japan, or register and insure it in a friends name perhaps.
      You can certainly bring your painting equipment and obtain a rental bike with luggage as an alterative to buying.

  6. Eric Harris

    Warren,
    I am traveling to Japan this April! Meeting up with my Japanese friend in Ebina (he鈥檚 bringing his SV650 on the ferry from western Honshu to Yokohama), renting a CBR from a shop there, then riding around the Izu Peninsula and Mt Fuji for 3 days before returning the bike. Do you have suggestions or 鈥渕ust sees鈥 while we are there? I previously thought that would provide plenty of entertainment for 3 days, but wondering now if we have time to go farther distances, and if so do you have recommendations?

    • Hi Eric,

      With three days I think Izu and Fuji is your best choice.
      You could go a little further however realise in April many high mountain roads will still be closed with snow or at the very least high risk of black ice.
      Izu will be open and free of snow and very low risk of any black ice in April there. It’s also a superb place to ride, Izu skyline seems like a road made for motorcycles.
      Between Izu and Fuji is Gotemba and Susuno, places where you will find affordable good hotel chains like Route Inn that I have used in both those locations.
      These are big congested towns so try use toll roads to get through there a quickly as possible.
      If you ride the 139 up to Motosu Lake there is good Mt Fuji view point there and the nearby roads in Yamanashi are less traffic than the roads at base of Fuji on the southern side.
      Pack your winter liners and warm gloves it will be cold around Mt Fuji foot hills.
      Have a great time 馃檪

  7. Jonny McK

    Hi Warren, thanks for this amazing resource! My friend and I are renting bikes out of Tokyo for just two days in mid May, 10am pickup, 6:30pm drop off next day. What would be the best use of our time without doing crazy miles?
    Much obliged, Jonny

    • Hi Jonny,

      For two days then I think the Izu region is your best choice. It is not too far from Tokyo, offers a mix of coastal and mountain roads and on a clear day has good views of Mt Fuji.

      If you use my best Japan motorcycle roads map then you can see the nice riding roads there marked and work on how many you might link together.

      The western coast IMO rides better from south to north as does the Izu Skyline because then you are looking towards Mt Fuji as you ride, but the skyline is good any direction.

      It really depends on where you stay that night as to how you might route. A suggestion might be exit at Gotemba and ride via Hakone to the Izu Skyline then the 414 then up the western coast and climb to ride the Nishi Izu Skyline with it’s excellent views and then cut back over to ride part of the Izu skyline again northbound then continue past it to the Akinoko Skyline at Hakone or one of the other roads good there then rejoin expressway at Gotemba.

      Alternatively you could just ride the Hakone roads, Izu Skyline and then cut over to the Nishi Izu skyline and stay in Mishima city which has lots of chain hotels and will be easy to find accommodation. Then day two ride back via Hakone roads and then to Tokyo via Doshi route 413 which is a popular bike road.

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