Contact us for more info about Coastal Japan: San-In Explorer

We don't currently have scheduled dates for this tour, however please let us know you're interested and when you'd like to go and we will endeavour to provide you with a tour to meet your needs.


    Coastal Japan: San-In Explorer

    Cycling Tottori City to Izumo from $8790 NZD

    Contact us for more info about Coastal Japan: San-In Explorer

    We don't currently have scheduled dates for this tour, however please let us know you're interested and when you'd like to go and we will endeavour to provide you with a tour to meet your needs.


      10 Days
      • 2024
      • 2025
      • Best time to travel: May - September
      • Availability Guide:
      • Current date selected
      • Plenty
      • Limited
      • Closed or too close to departure (Call Us for options)

      San-in is one of Japan’s least populated and least urbanized regions, making it an alluring setting for an off-the-beaten track cycling adventure in the Land of the Rising Sun! On this tour, we’ll traverse across San-in’s diverse geography of rugged shorelines, dramatic volcanic landscapes, colorful forests, and expansive farmlands. We’ll encounter quaint fishing villages, bustling maritime towns, timeless shrines and temples, grand Samurai castles, and breathtaking views. We soothe our muscles in hot springs, sleep in cozy accommodations, and indulge in an outstanding variety of local delicacies.

      Meeting in Tottori City we begin with an easy warm up ride to Japan’s largest and most visually striking sand dunes. The following day we cycle to Mount Mitoku where we’ll hike up to the fabled Buddhist temple of Nageiredo, perched precariously on a cliff. After spending the night in an onsen (hot spring) town we descend back towards the coastline and ride along the slopes of Mount Daisen, an extinct volcano that towers over the region. Once we reach Sakaiminato City we’ll ride to a stunning inland sea before catching a ferry to the Oki Islands. We’ll spend two days island riding and island hopping in a remote part of offshore Japan, discovering the stunning Kuniga Coast on Nishinoshima and cycling through the rural heart of Dogo-jima. Back on the mainland, we then ride to visit the intricate Miho Shrine before continuing along scenic headlands in pursuit of the historic city of Matsue. Matsue will be our base for two nights and here we’ll explore the majestic “Black Castle” and embark on a rural loop to one of Japan’s prettiest zen gardens at the Adachi Museum of Art. The tour concludes with a picturesque ride skirting along a lake and two rivers before arriving at Izumo Taisha, another of Japan’s most important Shinto shrines. We spend the final night in the city of Izuomo from where you can easily continue your travels onwards in Japan.

      Join us in exploring the remarkable San-in region and see a different part of Japan, differently!

      Tottori City to Izumi

      • Road Cycling
      • Grade
      • Tour dates on request
      • Min group size 4
      • Tour price from USD 5,350
      • Cycling tour on tarmac roads
      • Single room surcharge: on request
      • Bike hire available: eBike USD 650, Hybrid USD 400
      • This tour is invoiced in USD
      This trip is along tarmac roads in good condition, and there is no technical riding. San-in is one of Japan's least urbanized regions, so traffic tends to be minimal at all times. While on the mainland we will have a support vehicle with us at all times, during the riding on the remote Oki Islands (Days 5 and 6) a support vehicle will not be available. This trip is suitable for anyone with a reasonable level of fitness and prior experience riding an average of 50 km per day in hilly terrain. While riders with less experience are more than welcome, the fitter you are the more you will enjoy this trip. The cycling in San-in is moderately challenging with some gradual climbing on most days. We ride 453 km over 9 cycling days. There are no rest days but down-time is to be expected in the afternoons and evenings. In addition to cycling, at Mount Mitoku (Day 2) and the Kuniga Coast (Day 5) we we will be hiking for 1-2 hours, with some steep sections involved. At the beginning and end of the tour we'll be taking short rides on local trains to avoid busy city streets, and to get to and from the Oki Islands we'll be boarding passenger ferries on the Sea of Japan (3 ferry rides in total). Your guide’s expert knowledge of the area and terrain means that you always know what is coming up in terms of distance and difficulty. This makes a tremendous difference, as does the constant supply of water and refreshments along the way. We all ride at different speeds, and this varies depending upon how we feel on the day. The guides tend to ride through the group, but stop on the top of passes to regroup. It is not essential that you try and keep up with everyone. Just ride at your own speed and enjoy it. You will be supported!  

      Full Itinerary

      DAY 1

      Arrive in Tottori City

      Cycling: 25 km

      The meeting point for our tour is Tottori City, the gateway to the San-in region. We meet at our hotel by 13:00 hrs (01:00 PM) for a bike fitting and an easy 25 km warmup ride to the Tottori Sand Dunes, the largest and most visually striking of their kind in Japan. We will also visit the Sand Museum with its impressive sand sculptures. In the evening we convene for a trip briefing and welcome dinner at a local izakaya restaurant.

      Meals: Dinner

      DAY 2

      Tottori City - Mount Mitoku - Misasa Onsen

      Cycling: 52 km

      Our day begins with a 25 minute train journey westward along the San-in line. Disembarking on the outskirts of Tottori City, we saddle-up and begin cycling. Just 2 km into our ride we are greeted by vistas of the majestic Sea of Japan and continue along a coastal route unveiling sandy beaches and quaint fishing villages nestled between scenic headlands. After 15 km, our path veers inland where the landscape transforms into a tapestry of farmlands and forested hills. Soon, we reach Lako Togo and follow a gorgeous 10km loop around its peaceful shores. We continue onwards through the lush countryside which now becomes decidedly more mountainous and we’ve got some climbing to do! Our destination is Mount Mitoku, home to the fabled Buddhist temple of Nageiredo. Embarking on a steep yet picturesque hike, we marvel at the temple's precarious perch upon the mountain's cliffs. After taking in this awe inspiring sight we will free-wheel down to Misasa Onsen, our home for the night. In the evening we can relax in the healing waters of the various hot springs in town.

      Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

      DAY 3

      Misasa Onsen - Kaike Onsen

      Cycling: 73 km

      We head back to the coast by following the course of the Tenjin River for 20 km. Then we veer west, alternating between coast-hugging roads and rural stretches through pear farms and rice fields. Eventually we will begin to catch glimpses of the towering Mount Daisen, a dormant volcano once referred to as the “Mountain of the Great God” and bearing resemblance to the more well-known Mount Fuji. We cycle along the undulating roads on the lower and middle slopes of the volcano, stopping regularly to appreciate the natural beauty of the area and take pictures. Tackling the slopes will involve some gradual as well as steep uphill bursts, though these are always rewarded with refreshing descents downhill. We spend the night in the seaside town of Kaike, known for its onsens and seafood! Make sure to catch the sunset at the sandy Kaike Onsen Beach.

      Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

      DAY 4

      Kaike Onsen - Nishinoshima

      Cycling: 46 km

      This morning we depart Kaike along a very pleasant and newly built coastal cycle path to Sakaiminato City. The city and its surrounding areas, sandwiched between the Sea of Japan to the east and the Nakaumi Inland Sea to the west, makes for a great cycling route. First we will cross the famous Eshima Bridge to the islands of Eshima and then Daikonshima where we will make a stop off at the Yuushien Gardens. These beautifully landscaped Japanese gardens are perfect for a refreshing stroll before looping back to the coast via a scenic road that seemingly floats on the Nakaumi Inland Sea and then continues to hug the edge of the Sakaiminato Strait. The ride concludes with a high-arched bridge crossing to the harbor where we’ll load our bikes and embark on a relaxing 2 hour 50 minute ferry journey to the volcanic island of Nishinoshima. Upon arrival on the island, we will be transferred to our ryokan to enjoy a delicious seafood dinner. We are now in a truly remote, offshore, part of Japan!!

      Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

      DAY 5

      Nishinoshima - Dogo Island

      Cycling: 38 km approx.

      We begin with a quick transfer back to the port where our bikes will be waiting. We cut across the island on flat, paved roads for 10 km until we reach the spectacular Kuniga Coast, characterized by rugged cliffs, turquoise waters, and unique rock formations. We will walk along a coast-hugging trail to the top of the Matengai Cliffs; towering walls of volcanic rock reaching 257 meters which offer breathtaking views of the sea and coastline. We then cycle the 10 km back to the port and get comfortable on an inter-island ferry which will shuttle us over to our next island, Dogo-jima (2 hours on the boat). Upon arrival we’ll saddle up and ride along a winding road that cuts through the heart of the island. After 19 km we arrive at our hotel where we may enjoy the serenity of this quiet, remote island as we unwind from a great day of cycling.

      Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

      DAY 6

      Dogo Island - Sakaiminato

      Cycling: 44 km

      Considered by those in the know as one of Japan’s best cycling routes, today we traverse the north and east coast of Dogo Island as we head to the port to return to the mainland. The first highlight is after 15 km when we arrive at the Shirashima Coast Lookout. Reaching there will require some climbing but it’s well worth the effort once the dramatic scene of wave-battered bluffs set against the wide, open ocean comes into view. From here we descend down the east coast on quiet country roads, passing through dense forests, fishing ports, farmlands, and tunnels that burrow beneath the coastal hills. After 44 km we arrive back at Saigo Port where we’ll have lunch and board a ferry to take us back to the mainland (2 hours 25 minutes). Take in the views from the deck as we say goodbye to the islands. Upon arrival in Sakaiminato City we will be transferred to our hotel and we’ll reconvene for dinner in the evening.

      Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

      DAY 7

      Sakaiminato - Matsue

      Cycling: 65 km

      We begin with a 12 km ride over to the northern tip of the peninsula where we reach Miho Shrine. One of Japan’s most scenic shinto shrines, Miho is nestled on the slopes of Mount Atago and harbors intricate wooden architecture, including a gorgeous torii gate. We continue for another 3 km to the Mihonoseki Lighthouse where we can climb to the top to enjoy breathtaking vistas of the surrounding sea, lagoon and cliffs. We then backtrack a little bit before cutting 5 km across the hilly peninsula to its northern seashore. Here we’ll cycle along the nature-rich coastline, climbing up and down for 35 km between a scenic string of headlands jutting out into the Sea of Japan, separated by bays sheltering fishing villages. The final 10 km of the route takes us through rural areas leading into the historic city of Matsue on the shores of Lake Shinji. We’ll saddle-off and walk over to the “Black Castle”, one of only 12 original feudal-era castles left standing in Japan! Perched atop a hill and surrounded by a moat and thick walls, visiting Matsue castle makes for a great finale to the day.

      Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

      DAY 8

      Matsue Rural Loop

      Cycling: 47 km

      With our hotel in Matsue as our base, we’ve got a fun loop today that covers a large swathe of the forest-covered rolling hills and flat farmlands of the surrounding countryside. For the first 15 km we’ve got some gradual climbing to do but after that it is all downhill and flat. The highlight of today’s ride is a visit to the Adachi Museum of Art in the lovely village of Hirose. The Adachi Museum is renowned for its integration of Japanese art within meticulously maintained gardens that feature lush greenery, carefully arranged rocks and serene ponds. Truly zen! We’ll spend some time here before circling back to Matsue via roads flanked by extensive farmlands. Back in Matsue the rest of the day is yours to explore more of the city or simply relax.

      Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

      DAY 9

      Matsue - Izumo

      Cycling: 63 km

      Time for the home stretch as we cycle east from Matsue to the coastal city of Izumo. After departing Matsue, we ride for 25 km through a tightly packed sequence of small valleys north of Lake Shinki. Expect some sharp bursts up and down complemented by blissful rural surroundings. As we curve around the lake, the roads flatten and we skirt along the banks of two rivers - first the Hii and then the Kando – for 30 km before we are greeted, for the last time on our tour, by the turquoise waters of the Sea of Japan. The remaining few km take us north along the coast to the endpoint of the day’s ride: Izumo Taisha. This is one of Japan's oldest and most important Shinto Shrines and certainly one of the most impressive due to its grand architecture! We’ll spend some time exploring the beautiful grounds of the shrine and then hop on a local train for a 30 minute journey to our hotel near Izumo Train Station. We’ll enjoy a final dinner together as we celebrate the completion of our San-in cycling exploration.

      Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

      DAY 10

      Departure from Izumo

      No cycling

      Time to say goodbye! Depending on your onward travel plans, either head to the nearby airport or the train station. Daily flights are available to Tokyo, Osaka, and Fukuoaka. Kyoto and Osaka can be reached in half a day by train.

      Meals: Breakfast

      Tour Inclusions and Exclusions:

      Tour Includes:

      • Accommodation: 9 nights in hotels and Japanese style inns
      • Meals as listed in the itinerary
      • Local English speaking riding guide(s)
      • Vehicle(s) for transport and general support
      • Cold drinking water, soft drinks and snacks while riding
      • Onsen or hot spring fees as indicated in the itinerary

      Tour Excludes:

      • International flights and airport taxes
      • Domestic flights and/or trains pre or post tour
      • Passport and travel visa requirements
      • Arrival transfer day 1 (to Tottori hotel)
      • Airport departure transfer day 10 (from Izumo)
      • Early check-in / late check-out at hotels
      • Personal expenses and drinks
      • Bike hire
      • Optional activity and sightseeing costs
      • Travel insurance
      • Tips for guide(s) and support crew (but not customary)