Osaka 1-2 days
Amanohashidate - 2 days (overnight stay at onsen ryokan)
Nara 1 day
Because I'll be traveling with parents in their 60s and each of us with at least 1 piece of large luggage, I'm thinking it may be the best to base in Osaka and do day trips to the nearby cities. Is this a good idea?
If yes, which train/subway pass is the best for the locations we hope to visit? From what I researched, JR Kansai Wide Area pass seems to cover all of the places we wish to visit, but I've read that it can get inconvenient traveling and connecting within the city of Osaka. Kansai Thru pass is another option, but it seems to have longer travel times (I could be wrong and please correct me). Alternatively perhaps I can do a combo of both, using the 5 day JR Kansai Wide for long distance travels (i.e. Amanohashidate, Himeji) and Kansai Thru or Enjoy Eco Card (?) or regular Suica/Icoca cards for the shorter trips?
Also does staying near Namba or Umeda station matter? Friends have advised to stay in Namba for the scene and food, however I've read the daily commute to Osaka/Umeda station can be tedious if you stick with free rides from the JR pass. Maybe the Kansai Thru pass is a better after all?
Your advice, expertise and experiences are much appreciated. Tip and recommendations are welcome as well! Thanks.