Saturday, December 5, 2020

Final Autumn Touring - 2 Days, 700 Kms

With December behind the corner last month I decided it would be wise to make the most of the final weeks of autumn and embarked on a two-days touring. The first day, Saturday, was all about driving and I headed straight to Hakone Turnpike.

The colder air is definitely kinder to the VQ and overall the engine feels “happier” and bit sharper. A quick stop for a croissant (yes, I brought one all the way from Tokyo) and an espresso at 1,000m altitude on top of Mount Daikanzan.

As always there was no shortage of nice cars in the parking area, like this white V-spec II Nür, apparently tuned by Midori Sebi Center, at least judging by the sticker on the passenger-side window.

After a mandatory photo of Fuji-san I got back on the wheel, headed towards the Izu Skyline. As it’s getting colder is not uncommon to find some slippery, wet tarmac, especially under the trees shadow, so caution and knowing your own limits are key here.

I drove all the way down to Amagi Kogen Toll Booth, which marks the end of the Skyline and rewards you with 45 kilometers of the best mountain roads you can find in Japan. This concluded the first day as I returned back to Tokyo before lunch to avoid the usual traffic.

The next day I got up nice and early and headed towards Nikko in Tochigi prefecture. It’s all smooth expressway driving to get there, with way less traffic compared to the Tomei. Nikko is famous for its temples and is arguably one of the best locations to admire the famous Japanese autumn leaves.

While Saturday was all about proper driving, Sunday I decided to just enjoy the long morning cruise and then relax while visiting the area.

I’ve been to Nikko quite a few times, but it’s always a spectacular location, incredibly rich and filled with historical places.

I’ll never get tired of preaching this to GT-R enthusiasts who are planning to visit: Japan is a lot more than PA gatherings and visits to Nismo - don’t miss out!

A drive down to Nikko and a visit to its beautiful shrines and surroundings are worth a million trips to Daikoku in my books.

Two days, over 700 kilometers: not bad for a final autumn touring!

Until next time.

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