28 days in Japan & South Korea Itinerary

28 days in Japan & South Korea Itinerary

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Route & dates

28 days in Japan & South Korea Itinerary

Start: Seattle, United States
Fly:  15​h 30​min
1
Seoul, South Korea
— 4 nights
Drive:  2​h 15​min
2
Sokcho, South Korea
— 4 nights
Drive:  5​h
3
Busan, South Korea
— 3 nights
Fly:  5​h
4
Osaka, Japan
— 5 nights
Drive:  2​h 45​min
5
Nachikatsura-cho, Japan
— 3 nights
Drive:  7​h 45​min
6
Nikko, Japan
— 2 nights
Train:  1​h 45​min
7
Tokyo, Japan
— 5 nights
Fly:  14​h 30​min
End: Seattle, United States

4
nights
Seoul, South Korea

Seoul ©
One of east Asia's major cultural and financial centers, Seoul boasts five World Heritage Sites and a huge selection of museums, temples, shrines, palaces, parks, gardens, and glass-and-steel skyscrapers.
Escape the urban bustle at Cheonggyecheon Stream and Eurwangni Beach. Get some cultural insight at Gyeongbokgung Palace and Bukchon Hanok Village. Explore Seoul's surroundings by going to Paju (The Third Tunnel & DMZ). Next up on the itinerary: step into the grandiose world of Changdeokgung Palace, get engrossed in the history at Deoksugung, explore the striking landscape of Bukhansan National Park, and get great views at N Seoul Tower.

To see ratings, more things to do, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read Seoul sightseeing planner.

Seattle, USA to Seoul is an approximately 15.5-hour combination of flight and train. You can also do a combination of shuttle, flight, and train; or fly. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 17 hours traveling from Seattle to Seoul. Traveling from Seattle in October, expect a bit warmer with lows of 65°F in Seoul. Finish your sightseeing early on the 18th (Thu) to allow enough time to drive to Sokcho.

Things to do in Seoul

Parks Historic Sites Nature

Side Trips

Paju, Eurwangni Beach
Find places to stay Oct 14 — 18:
Highlights from your plan
Gyeongbokgung Palace ©
Gyeongbokgung Palace
Changdeokgung Palace ©
Changdeokgung Palace
Insadong ©
Insadong

4
nights
Sokcho, South Korea

Sokcho ©
Tourism in Sokcho mostly revolves around the local national park, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.
Visit Naksansa Temple and Woljeongsa for their historical value. You'll get in some beach time at Gyeongpo Beach and Naksan Beach. Explore Sokcho's surroundings by going to Gangneung (Ojukheon, Gangneung Seongyojang, & more). There's still lots to do: explore the striking landscape of Seoraksan National Park, steep yourself in history at Gwongeumseong Fortress, take in the natural beauty of Cheoksan Foot Spa Park, and take a stroll through Abai Village.

To find ratings, traveler tips, photos, and other tourist information, go to the Sokcho vacation planner.

Traveling by car from Seoul to Sokcho takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Traveling from Seoul in October, expect a bit cooler with lows of 60°F in Sokcho. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 22nd (Mon) to allow time for the car ride to Busan.

Things to do in Sokcho

Parks Nature Historic Sites

Side Trips

Gangneung, Yangyang-gun, Woljeongsa
Find places to stay Oct 18 — 22:
Highlights from your plan
Seoraksan National Park ©
Seoraksan National Park
Naksansa Temple ©
Naksansa Temple
Ulsanbawi Rock ©
Ulsanbawi Rock

3
nights
Busan, South Korea

Busan ©
The country's second city, Busan has often been referred to as South Korea's summer capital.
Deepen your sense of the past at sights like Haedong Yonggung Temple and Beomeosa Temple. Get outdoors at Haeundae Beach and Gwangalli Beach. Next up on the itinerary: tour the pleasant surroundings at Songjeong Beach, make a trip to BIFF Square, take in the views from Gwangandaegyo Bridge, and get great views at Nurimaru APAC House.

To find traveler tips, ratings, photos, and tourist information, read Busan online road trip planner .

You can drive from Sokcho to Busan in 5 hours. Other options are to do a combination of bus and train; or do a combination of bus and flight. While traveling from Sokcho, expect somewhat warmer days and about the same nights in Busan, ranging from highs of 72°F to lows of 56°F. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 25th (Thu) to allow enough time to travel to Osaka.

Things to do in Busan

Parks Outdoors Beaches
Find places to stay Oct 22 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
Haeundae Beach ©
Haeundae Beach
Gwangalli Beach ©
Gwangalli Beach
Haedong Yonggung Temple ©
Haedong Yonggung Temple

5
nights
Osaka, Japan

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.
Take a break from the city and head to Nara Park and Ashiya Comprehensive Park Ashiya Beach. Get some historical perspective at Nijo-jo Castle and Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine. Venture out of the city with trips to Kyoto (Sanjusangendo Temple, Kyoto National Museum, & more) and Nara (Todai-ji Temple & Todaiji Temple Cultural Center). Next up on the itinerary: explore the historical opulence of Osaka Castle, steep yourself in history at Osaka City Central Hall, see the interesting displays at Museum of Oriental Ceramics, and take a stroll through Dotonbori.

To find other places to visit, reviews, where to stay, and more tourist information, go to the Osaka trip maker website .

You can do a combination of flight and train from Busan to Osaka in 5 hours. Other options are to do a combination of ferry and train; or do a combination of ferry and car. In October, daily temperatures in Osaka can reach 74°F, while at night they dip to 60°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 30th (Tue) to allow time to drive to Nachikatsura-cho.

Things to do in Osaka

Historic Sites Parks Museums

Side Trips

Kyoto, Nara, Ashiya Comprehensive Park Ashiya Beach
Find places to stay Oct 25 — 30:
Highlights from your plan
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine ©
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine
Kiyomizu-dera Temple ©
Kiyomizu-dera Temple
Kinkaku-ji ©
Kinkaku-ji

3
nights
Nachikatsura-cho, Japan

Nachikatsura-cho ©
The town of Nachikatsuura-cho wows visitors with its superlative landscape and impressive cultural attractions.
Get outdoors at Nachi Mitaki Falls and Kumano Kodo Pilgrimage Routes (World Heritage). You'll get in some beach time at Kinomatsushima Island and Nachi Forest. Change things up with these side-trips from Nachikatsura-cho: Kushimoto-cho (Hashigui Rock, Cape Shionomisaki, & more), Tanabe (Oyunohara - Original Kumano Hongu Taisha Site, Kumano Hongu Taisha, & more) and Shingu (Kumano Hayatama Taisha & Kamikura Shrine). The adventure continues: don't miss a visit to Daimonzaka, take in the spiritual surroundings of Kumano Nachi Taisha, tour the pleasant surroundings at Nachi Highland Park, and look for gifts at Mt. Nachi Tourist Center.

To find where to stay, photos, traveler tips, and tourist information, use the Nachikatsura-cho trip builder app .

You can drive from Osaka to Nachikatsura-cho in 3 hours. Another option is to take a train. Traveling from Osaka in October, you can expect nighttime temperatures to be somewhat warmer in Nachikatsura-cho, with lows of 66°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 2nd (Fri) to allow enough time to travel to Nikko.

Things to do in Nachikatsura-cho

Parks Historic Sites Nature

Side Trips

Tanabe, Kushimoto-cho, Shingu, Taiji-cho
Find places to stay Oct 30 — Nov 2:
Highlights from your plan
Nachi Mitaki Falls ©
Nachi Mitaki Falls
Kumano Nachi Taisha ©
Kumano Nachi Taisha
Kamikura Shrine ©
Kamikura Shrine

2
nights
Nikko, Japan

A gateway to a sprawling and diverse national park, a center of Shinto spiritualism and place of Buddhist worship, an emblem of the riches and dominance of the Tokugawa shogunate: Nikko means many things to many people.
Kick off your visit on the 2nd (Fri): take in the dramatic scenery at Ryuzu Waterfall, learn more about the world around you at Nikko Tamozawa Imperial Villa Memorial Park, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Nikko Tosho-gu, take in the spiritual surroundings of Taiyuimbyo Shrine, then tour the pleasant surroundings at Nikko National Park, and finally take in the history at Senjogahara Field. On the 3rd (Sat), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: steep yourself in history at Nikko Futarasan Jinja Shrine, then soak in some Japanese tradition at some of the top local onsens, and then snap pictures at Shinkyo.

To see traveler tips, other places to visit, photos, and tourist information, you can read our Nikko trip planning website .

Traveling by combination of train and flight from Nachikatsura-cho to Nikko takes 8 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a train. When traveling from Nachikatsura-cho in November, plan for a bit cooler days in Nikko, with highs around 55°F, while nights are about the same with lows around 52°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 4th (Sun) early enough to go by car to Tokyo.

Things to do in Nikko

Baths Spas Historic Sites

Side Trip

Nikko National Park
Find places to stay Nov 2 — 4:
Highlights from your plan
Onsen Resorts
Nikko Tosho-gu ©
Nikko Tosho-gu
Taiyuimbyo Shrine ©
Taiyuimbyo Shrine

5
nights
Tokyo, Japan

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.
Museum-lovers will appreciate Tokyo National Museum and The Hakone Open-Air Museum. Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Senso-ji Temple and Odaiba. Change things up with these side-trips from Tokyo: Kamakura (Kamakura Hiking Trails, Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine, & more), Yokohama (Yokohama Chinatown & Minato Mirai 21) and Hakone Shisseikaen (in Hakone-machi). There's much more to do: see the interesting displays at Edo-Tokyo Museum, admire the masterpieces at Ghibli Museum, wander the streets of Asakusa, and take in nature's colorful creations at Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden.

To find more things to do, photos, maps, and more tourist information, read Tokyo holiday maker website .

Traveling by car from Nikko to Tokyo takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train. When traveling from Nikko in November, plan for somewhat warmer days in Tokyo, with highs around 62°F, while nights are about the same with lows around 49°F. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 9th (Fri) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Tokyo

Neighborhoods Museums Historic Sites

Side Trips

Kamakura, Yokohama, Hakone-machi, Ghibli Museum Mitaka
Find places to stay Nov 4 — 9:
Highlights from your plan
Odaiba ©
Odaiba
Senso-ji Temple ©
Senso-ji Temple
Tokyo National Museum ©
Tokyo National Museum

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