I have noticed on an American based NC700X forum that I participate in that a lot of riders have colorful American maps in their signature line. These maps are colored to highlight where they have traveled on their motorcycles. The images are created by a website, visitedstatesmap.com, that automagically colors the image for you. You just tick off the states you have been to on your bike and the site produces a colorful image for you. Unfortunately, I have not had much luck finding something similar for Japan. As such, I had to hack one together myself.
I spent more time on this than I care to admit… Between searching for the best map to use, removing all the color fill, retyping all the prefecture names, and recoloring it I spent the better part of an afternoon/evening on it.
So far I have only overnighted with my bike in seven other prefectures besides Shimane, and toured through five more. I have probably ridden in Hiroshima as much as in Shimane, as most of the good roads in the mountains around here go back and forth between the prefectures, but until I pop a tent on that side of the mountains Hiroshima will remain yellow.
So far I have ridden all of the Chugoku region (Yamaguchi, Shimane, Hiroshima, Tottori, Okayama), all of Shikoku (Ehime, Kōchi, Kagawa, and Tokushima), and almost half of Kyushu (Fukuoka, Kumamoto, and Ōita). I think that by the end of my upcoming Hokkaido trip, I will add ten more prefectures to the map, three of which will be overnight stays.
I am really looking forward to filling this map in completely over the next few years… Wanna go for a ride?