20 days in Japan Itinerary

20 days in Japan Itinerary

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Route & dates

20 days in Japan Itinerary

Start: Perth
Fly:  15 h 45 min
1
Miyakojima
— 1 night
+2
Fly + Subway + Train:  4 h 30 min
2
Hiroshima
— 3 nights
Train:  1 h
3
Himeji
— 2 nights
Train:  1 h
4
Osaka
— 3 nights
Train:  30 min
5
Kyoto
— 3 nights
Train:  2 h 30 min
6
Kanazawa
— 1 night
Train:  2 h 30 min
7
Tokyo
— 5 nights
Fly:  13 h 15 min
End: Perth

1
night
Miyakojima

Miyakojima ©
A city jurisdiction formed after the merger of several towns in 2005, Miyakojima spans six linked-up islands.
Start off your visit on the 21st (Mon): enjoy the sand and surf at Sunayama Beach, then identify plant and animal life at Yabiji, and then enjoy the sand and surf at Yonaha Maehama Beach. Here are some ideas for day two: enjoy the sand and surf at Toguchi no Hama, discover the deep blue sea with a scuba or snorkeling tour, kick back and relax at Aragusuku Beach, then add some adventure to your tour with a kayaking and canoeing tour, and finally take in the views from Irabu Ohashi.

To see where to stay, reviews, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read Miyakojima trip planning app .

Perth, Australia to Miyakojima is an approximately 16-hour flight. The time zone difference when traveling from Perth to Miyakojima is 1 hour. While traveling from Perth, expect slightly colder days and about the same nights in Miyakojima, ranging from highs of 25°C to lows of 20°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 22nd (Tue) early enough to travel to Hiroshima.

Things to do in Miyakojima

Outdoors Parks Beaches
Find places to stay Dec 20 — 22:
Highlights from your plan
Yonaha Maehama Beach ©
Yonaha Maehama Beach
Sunayama Beach ©
Sunayama Beach
Yabiji
Yabiji

3
nights
Hiroshima

Hiroshima ©
Grapple with history and appreciate modernity in Hiroshima, a city known around the world for its tragic past and inspiring rebirth.
Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum and Miyajima. Museum-lovers will appreciate Hiroshima Museum of Art and Fukuromachi Elementary School Peace Museum. Change things up with these side-trips from Hiroshima: Mt. Misen (in Miyajima) and Hatsukaichi (Misen Wild Woods & Itsukushima Shrine). And it doesn't end there: steep yourself in history at Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima, get engrossed in the history at Hiroshima National Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims, and explore the historical opulence of Hiroshima Castle.

To find topicsMoreInfo.option.ratings, more things to do, photos, and more tourist information, refer to the Hiroshima road trip site .

Traveling by combination of flight and train from Miyakojima to Hiroshima takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or do a combination of flight and ferry. When traveling from Miyakojima in December, plan for little chillier days and cooler nights in Hiroshima: temperatures range from 13°C by day to 4°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 25th (Fri) to allow enough time to take a train to Himeji.

Things to do in Hiroshima

Historic Sites Museums Parks

Side Trip

Hatsukaichi
Find places to stay Dec 22 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum ©
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
Itsukushima Shrine ©
Itsukushima Shrine
Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima ©
Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima

2
nights
Himeji

Himeji ©
The castle around which the city of Himeji has developed represents one of the best preserved in the country, and has been designated as a national treasure and a World Heritage Site.
Start off your visit on the 26th (Sat): take in the pleasant sights at Himeji Castle, take in nature's colorful creations at Koko-en, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Ishino Hoden Oishi Shrine, then take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Mt. Takamikura, and finally contemplate the long history of Yoneda Taishiji Temple. On the 27th (Sun), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: see the interesting displays at Japan Toy Museum, hike along Mt Shosha hiking, and then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Jodoji Temple.

For maps, topicsMoreInfo.option.ratings, more things to do, and more tourist information, read Himeji online trip builder .

Traveling by train from Hiroshima to Himeji takes an hour. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and train. In December, plan for daily highs up to 13°C, and evening lows to 6°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 27th (Sun) so you can travel to Osaka.

Things to do in Himeji

Parks Historic Sites Outdoors

Side Trips

Takasago, Mt. Takamikura, Jodoji Temple
Find places to stay Dec 25 — 27:
Highlights from your plan
Mt Shosha hiking ©
Mt Shosha hiking
Himeji Castle ©
Himeji Castle
Japan Toy Museum ©
Japan Toy Museum

3
nights
Osaka

Osaka ©
Proud of their hometown's distinct culture and dialect, many natives of Osaka describe their city as "Japan's anti-capital." An antidote to Tokyo's hectic energy, Osaka marches to the beat of its own drum, serving as the country's longtime commercial and industrial hub.
Get outdoors at Nara Park and Mt. Koya. Get some cultural insight at Dotonbori and Koyasan Okunoin. Explore Osaka's surroundings by going to Nara (Kofuku-ji Temple & Todaiji Temple Cultural Center). The adventure continues: explore the historical opulence of Osaka Castle, examine the collection at Osaka Shiritsu Toyo Toji Museum, and get in on the family fun at Universal Studios Japan.

For other places to visit, more things to do, photos, and more tourist information, you can read our Osaka sightseeing website .

Take a train from Himeji to Osaka in an hour. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. December in Osaka sees daily highs of 13°C and lows of 4°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 30th (Wed) early enough to take a train to Kyoto.

Things to do in Osaka

Theme Parks Parks Historic Sites

Side Trips

Nara, Koya-cho
Find places to stay Dec 27 — 30:
Highlights from your plan
Nara Park ©
Nara Park
Osaka Castle ©
Osaka Castle
Dotonbori ©
Dotonbori

3
nights
Kyoto

Kyoto ©
The national capital for over a thousand years, Kyoto retains much of the charm of old Japan, boasting numerous temples and shrines that seem completely untouched by the modern world.
Get a sense of the local culture at Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine and Kiyomizu-dera Temple. Popular historic sites such as Nijo Castle and Kyoto Isshu Trail, Higahiyama Fuahimi Inari Course are in your itinerary. There's still lots to do: take a stroll through Gion, take in the spiritual surroundings of Kinkaku-ji, steep yourself in history at Sanjusangendo Temple, and admire the masterpieces at Hosomi Museum.

To find where to stay, reviews, traveler tips, and more tourist information, refer to the Kyoto trip itinerary builder tool .

Kyoto is just a short distance from Osaka. In December, daily temperatures in Kyoto can reach 13°C, while at night they dip to 4°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 2nd (Sat) to allow time to take a train to Kanazawa.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Neighborhoods Parks
Find places to stay Dec 30 — Jan 2:
Highlights from your plan
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine ©
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine
Kiyomizu-dera Temple ©
Kiyomizu-dera Temple
Kinkaku-ji ©
Kinkaku-ji

1
night
Kanazawa

Kanazawa ©
An old castle town largely unspoiled during World War II, Kanazawa features well-preserved architecture spread across a range of districts.
Start off your visit on the 3rd (Sun): explore the historical opulence of Kanazawa Castle, take a stroll through Higashichaya Old Town, see the interesting displays at Ishikawa Prefectural Museum for Traditional Products and Crafts, then don't miss a visit to Seisonkaku Villa, then take in nature's colorful creations at Kenrokuen Garden, and finally admire the masterpieces at 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa.

To find reviews, more things to do, topicsMoreInfo.option.ratings, and tourist information, read Kanazawa attractions planner.

Getting from Kyoto to Kanazawa by train takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: drive; or take a bus. In January, daily temperatures in Kanazawa can reach 7°C, while at night they dip to 0°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 3rd (Sun) so you can take a train to Tokyo.

Things to do in Kanazawa

Museums Historic Sites Parks
Find places to stay Jan 2 — 3:
Highlights from your plan
Higashichaya Old Town ©
Higashichaya Old Town
Kanazawa Castle ©
Kanazawa Castle

5
nights
Tokyo

Tokyo ©
Tokyo holds the status of most populous metropolitan area in the world--a fact you'll find tangible as you walk the bustling streets and explore its diverse neighborhoods and cultures.
Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Odaiba and Senso-ji Temple. Museum-lovers will get to explore Tokyo National Museum and Fukagawa Edo Museum. Change things up with these side-trips from Tokyo: The Hakone Open-Air Museum (in Hakone-machi) and Ghibli Museum Mitaka (in Mitaka). There's much more to do: see the interesting displays at Edo-Tokyo Museum, wander the streets of Takeshita Street, stop by Akihabara, and shop like a local with Ginza.

To see maps, topicsMoreInfo.option.ratings, other places to visit, and tourist information, refer to the Tokyo online tour planner .

You can take a train from Kanazawa to Tokyo in 2.5 hours. Other options are to fly; or drive. While traveling from Kanazawa, expect somewhat warmer days and about the same nights in Tokyo, ranging from highs of 11°C to lows of 1°C. You'll set off for home on the 8th (Fri).

Things to do in Tokyo

Neighborhoods Museums Shopping

Side Trips

The Hakone Open-Air Museum, Ghibli Museum Mitaka
Find places to stay Jan 3 — 8:
Highlights from your plan
Odaiba ©
Odaiba
Senso-ji Temple ©
Senso-ji Temple
Tokyo National Museum ©
Tokyo National Museum

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