I’m Jacob Laukaitis, a 21 year old digital nomad, who’s already been to more than 30 countries in the last two years. I enjoy capturing moments from my travels and sharing them with the world. My newest one—a 160km long bike ride across six islands in Japan.
The cycling route is called Shimanami Kaido and it connects the Honshu and Shikoku islands through six smaller islands. The smaller islands are connected with massive bridges. The roads are well developed and straight which makes riding a breeze. Every time I crossed a bridge, I would ride up a steep hill for about two kilometers then cycle down the coastline.
The cycling paths are amazing, safe, and perfectly suited for bike rides. I don’t think there’s a single place in Japan that’s not safe which makes the ride even more enjoyable. During this adventure there were dozens of old people cycling along the path. It took me two full days to finish this route. I was cycling around 8-10 hours a day (stops included). At night, I would sleep at hostels and guest houses. Travel-Ticker.com sponsored some of my accommodation, as well as flights and the video editing costs.
The planning process for this trip was quite easy. If you’re interested in completing a feat like mine, use this map as guidance. I started at Onomichi Station, drove to Imabari Station and back to Onomichi Station.
This route is one of the most interesting things to do in Japan and I simply could not resist not doing it. My main take-away from this trip is you need to rent or purchase a good bicycle! The one I rented did not contribute to the trip being pleasant, far from it actually. I rented the bike from a bike rental located by the Onomichi Station which was the starting point of my trip. It was the first rental shop I found and rented from there. The bike was not suited for this long of a trip, maybe more suited for daily commute in the city, but definitely not 160km! My tip for choosing the bike would be to find something lightweight and with easy pedaling. Also proper shoes are a must! I had problems with my sneakers so I opted to pedal barefoot.
This was my second trip to Japan. and I went there for 2 months. I would advise you to learn at least a little bit of Japanese, since it’s relatively hard to communicate in English. Even though Japan is a pretty expensive country, you can take night buses and stay at wonderful hostels for really cheap. Make sure to take as many walks as possible (I walked over 100 kilometers around Tokyo in just 3 days) and go up the mountains – they’re spectacular. Japan is one of my favorite countries in the world. I could easily see myself living there. The landscapes are amazing, the people’s hospitality and helpfulness are unconquerable and the culture is very unique.