Travel Japan 101 – Help

  • Travel Japan 101 – Help

    Posted by demarie on January 16, 2019 at 1:56 pm

    I am a mom of a 20 year old with CP in a power wheelchair.  We live in Louisiana.  He graduated high school May 2018.  Japan is and has been his passion and a dream trip!  He will travel in his manual chair.  We are a family of 4 and looking to travel May 27~28 to June 8, 2019.   Is May to June rainy season?  Is this a good time to travel in a wheelchair?  What do we do if it rains?   I guess we will fly into Narita and fly out of ???.  How do we get from airport to hotel while maneuvering him and our luggage – I don’t understand how?  Do we keep the hotel and take backpacks to all the places we want to go or do we also take our luggage?  If we take our luggage, how?  How do we pack – light – walking shoes – anything dressy?  We want to, I think, start in Tokyo and end up in Hiroshima.  It this the best start?  Do all we can in 10-11 days.  I am just overwhelmed and really do not know where to begin or how to plan this trip.  Is there any Ryokan’s for wheelchairs?  And that Rail Pass – my head is spinning.  What is the rule of thumb for how much can be done in a day?  I am so very lost!  Help Help Help  We want to have a trip of a life time.  I don’t want to ruin it with so much anxiety over this.  Can someone start with the basic step-by step from the airport?  I see all the blogs about maneuvering the small towns and cities but nothing on the baby steps.

    Accessible Japan replied 5 years ago 4 Members · 21 Replies
  • 21 Replies
  • Accessible Japan

    January 16, 2019 at 5:24 pm


    First of all, rainy season is from mid-June, so you should be fine.

    For getting from the airport to your hotel, taking suitcases and pushing a wheelchair on the train will be difficult, so you may want to talk to @wilgo about an accessible taxi.  Depending on your arrival time, you could be able to send your suitcases to the hotel with same-day courier services.

    For transporting suitcases between cities, if you don’t want to take everything with you on the train, you can take necessities and send your bags ahead by courier.

    If you plan to visit Hiroshima as well, you should get the JR Pass.

    A lot of the places you list are accessible, but if we put them all in this thread it will get jumbled.  So, perhaps start a thread for each place you want to visit, and we can reply there. That may help some of the confusion.

    Don’t worry, we’re here to help!

  • demarie

    January 20, 2019 at 2:57 am

    Kuroneko Yamato Trasnporation is popular when traveling around touring Japan and not staying in one place?

  • Accessible Japan

    January 20, 2019 at 10:17 pm

    I don’t know the number of tourists that use it, but it is all across the country.  Most hotels will accept your suitcases ahead of time, but some very small budget hotels may not have enough room, so you should confirm in advance.

    Also, while the service is very fast, you should always take essentials with you just in case you arrive before your luggage.

  • demarie

    February 14, 2019 at 10:43 am

    Can a wheelchair attend a Geisha performance and dinner?  If so and I know this is costly, who do I book?  How does a wheelchair get to Miyajima?

  • Accessible Japan

    February 14, 2019 at 11:19 am


    I know that Sayuki is interested in starting accessible geisha banquets but has had a bit of trouble finding a place.  Try contacting her via the Fukagawa Geisha –  Please tell them Accessible Japan sent you.

    As for Miyajima, after getting off at JR Miyajimaguchi Station, the ferry dock is a short walk away.  The ferry and station are wheelchair accessible, as is most of the shrine.

    Both @melanie_lmt and @joanp have been more recently than I have, so they can maybe give more details. 🙂

  • Joan Pahisa

    February 14, 2019 at 6:02 pm


    Here’s my Instagram post of Miyajima with information on accessibility.

    Transportation is as Josh said and, as far as I know, only that combination is accessible.

    As for accommodation, I could not find a wheelchair accessible hotel in the island (there was one at the sea front, but it had some steps to access the room and then stairs to the onsen), so I’d recommend staying at Hiroshima.

    All the shrine and the see front are wheelchair accessible, so the visit is definitely worth it. When I was there we didn’t venture into the side streets. With a Google Street View inspection, it seemed there were pretty steep slopes.

    Anyway, enjoy the trip!

  • Melanie

    February 14, 2019 at 10:37 pm

    @DeMarie I’ve published an extensive accessibility review of Miyajima Island including all the info on transportation. Maybe you want to take a look at it:

    We spent a whole day at Miyajima and saw all the major sights. I found the island to be pretty wheelchair accessible.

  • demarie

    February 18, 2019 at 1:10 am

    What is Sunday like in Japan?  Are tourist places open?  Also which airport is better to fly into with a wheelchair.  Narita or Haneda?  Yes we are staying in Tokyo first.


  • Accessible Japan

    February 18, 2019 at 5:12 pm


    Most places are open Sunday, often museums/art galleries etc close on the following Monday instead.

    I prefer Haneda, but it likely depends on your hotel location.

  • demarie

    February 18, 2019 at 10:31 pm

    Should we plan first 2 weeks in June or last 2 weeks in July?  (14 days)

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