39 days in Japan Itinerary

39 days in Japan Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Japan tour itinerary builder

Plan created by another user. Make it yours

Route & dates

1
Kanazawa
— 4 nights
2
Kyoto
— 4 nights
3
Matsue
— 4 nights
4
Hiroshima
— 4 nights
5
Yakushima-cho
— 4 nights
6
Iriomote-jima
— 4 nights
7
Ishigaki
— 3 nights
8
Miyakojima
— 4 nights
9
Tokyo
— 5 nights

4
nights
Kanazawa

Kanazawa ©
An old castle town largely unspoiled during World War II, Kanazawa features well-preserved architecture spread across a range of districts.
Your inner history buff will appreciate Daihonzan Eihei-ji Temple and Nomura Family Samurai House. Fukui Prefectural Dinosaur Museum and Hataya Textile Factory Memorial Hall will appeal to museum buffs. Explore Kanazawa's surroundings by going to Shirakawa-mura (Shirakawago Gassho Zukuri Minkaen, Wada House, &more), Chirihama Nagisa Driveway (in Hakui) and Nanto (Suganuma Gassho Community & Gokayama). Next up on the itinerary: examine the collection at D. T. Suzuki Museum, steep yourself in history at Oyama Shrine, and take in nature's colorful creations at Kenrokuen Garden.

To find reviews, photos, and tourist information, read Kanazawa trip planner.

Newark, USA to Kanazawa is an approximately 19.5-hour combination of car and flight. Traveling from Newark to Kanazawa, you'll lose 14 hours due to the time zone difference. Expect a bit warmer evenings in Kanazawa when traveling from Newark in November, with lows around °F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 1st (Sun) so you can go by car to Kyoto.

Things to do in Kanazawa

Historic Sites Museums Parks

Side Trips

Shirakawa-mura, Katsuyama, Nanto, Chirihama Nagisa Driveway, Daihonzan Eihei-ji Temple
Find places to stay Nov 27 — Dec 1:
Highlights from your plan
Daihonzan Eihei-ji Temple ©
Daihonzan Eihei-ji Temple
Fukui Prefectural Dinosaur Museum ©
Fukui Prefectural Dinosaur Museum
Chirihama Nagisa Driveway ©
Chirihama Nagisa Driveway

4
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.
You'll discover tucked-away gems like Tofuku-ji Temple and Walking tours. Visit Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine and Eikando Zenrinji Temple for their historical value. There's lots more to do: take in the spiritual surroundings of Kinkaku-ji, stop by Gion, steep yourself in history at Kiyomizu-dera Temple, and explore the historical opulence of Nijo Castle.

To find other places to visit, more things to do, photos, and tourist information, you can read our Kyoto trip website.

Traveling by car from Kanazawa to Kyoto takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or take a bus. Expect a daytime high around °F in December, and nighttime lows around °F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 5th (Thu) so you can go by car to Matsue.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Tours Neighborhoods
Find places to stay Dec 1 — 5:
Highlights from your plan
Kinkaku-ji ©
Kinkaku-ji
Kiyomizu-dera Temple ©
Kiyomizu-dera Temple
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine ©
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine

4
nights
Matsue

Matsue ©
Matsue sits on the banks of the Ohashi-gawa river, channeling its waters through a series of canals and rivers that add much to the scenic aspect of the urban area.
Adachi Museum of Art and Izumo Hinomisaki Lighthouse are good opportunities to explore the local culture. Visit Hinomisaki Shrine and Yaegaki Shrine for their historical value. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Matsue: Takuhi Shrine (in Nishinoshima-cho), Izumo (Shimane Museum of Ancient Izumo, Former Taisha Station, &more) and Oki Chibu Red Cliff (in Chibu-mura). There's lots more to do: take in the spiritual surroundings of Miho Shrine, explore the activities along Shinji Lake, steep yourself in history at Matsue Castle, and admire the masterpieces at Shimane Art Museum.

To see where to stay, other places to visit, reviews, and tourist information, read our Matsue trip itinerary site.

Traveling by car from Kyoto to Matsue takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of train and flight; or take a train. In December, plan for daily highs up to °F, and evening lows to °F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 9th (Mon) early enough to go by car to Hiroshima.

Things to do in Matsue

Historic Sites Parks Nature

Side Trips

Izumo, Takuhi Shrine, Adachi Museum of Art, Shinji Lake, Oki Chibu Red Cliff
Find places to stay Dec 5 — 9:
Highlights from your plan
Adachi Museum of Art ©
Adachi Museum of Art
Yaegaki Shrine ©
Yaegaki Shrine
Susa Shrine ©
Susa Shrine

4
nights
Hiroshima

Hiroshima ©
Grapple with history and appreciate modernity in Hiroshima, a city known around the world for its tragic past and inspiring rebirth.
Popular historic sites such as Daishoin Temple and Miyajima are in your itinerary. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Hiroshima National Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims and Yamato Museum. Explore Hiroshima's surroundings by going to Senkoji & Senkoji Park (in Onomichi), Mt. Misen (in Miyajima) and Itsukushima Shrine (in Hatsukaichi). The adventure continues: examine the collection at JMSDF Kure Museum, contemplate the long history of Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima, get engrossed in the history at Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, and explore the world behind art at Hiroshima Museum of Art.

To find maps, more things to do, where to stay, and tourist information, read Hiroshima visit app.

Getting from Matsue to Hiroshima by car takes about 2 hours. Other options: take a bus; or take a train. December in Hiroshima sees daily highs of °F and lows of °F at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 13th (Fri) so you can travel to Yakushima-cho.

Things to do in Hiroshima

Historic Sites Museums Parks

Side Trips

Hatsukaichi, Kure, Senkoji & Senkoji Park
Find places to stay Dec 9 — 13:
Highlights from your plan
Daishoin Temple ©
Daishoin Temple
Yamato Museum ©
Yamato Museum

4
nights
Yakushima-cho

Yakushima-cho ©
A popular destination for Japanese tourists, Kumage-gun Yakushima-cho is a true paradise for nature lovers, with over 1,900 species and subspecies of plants.
Step out of the city life by going to Shiratani Unsuikyo Valley and Seibu Trail. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Yakusugi Land and The Yakushima World Heritage Conservation Center. There's more to do: admire the sheer force of Oko no Taki Fall and don't miss a visit to Kigensugi Cedar.

To see where to stay, traveler tips, maps, and more tourist information, you can read our Yakushima-cho trip itinerary maker site.

Traveling by combination of train and flight from Hiroshima to Yakushima-cho takes 5.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of train, bus, and flight; or do a combination of train and ferry. Traveling from Hiroshima in December, things will get somewhat warmer in Yakushima-cho: highs are around °F and lows about °F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 17th (Tue) so you can travel to Iriomote-jima.

Things to do in Yakushima-cho

Parks Nature Outdoors
Find places to stay Dec 13 — 17:
Highlights from your plan
Shiratani Unsuikyo Valley ©
Shiratani Unsuikyo Valley
Yakusugi Land ©
Yakusugi Land
Oko no Taki Fall
Oko no Taki Fall

4
nights
Iriomote-jima

Iriomote-jima ©
Taketomicho Iriomote-Jima stands as the second largest island in Okinawa.
You'll discover tucked-away gems like Canyoning & Rappelling Tours and Iriomote Island. Take a break from the city and head to Pinaisara Falls and Ida no Hama Beach. Next up on the itinerary: identify plant and animal life at Funauki Village, contemplate the long history of Wasurenaishi, take in the pleasant sights at Ruins of Amitory Village, and paddle through the water with a kayaking and canoeing tour.

To find photos, traveler tips, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read our Iriomote-jima trip planner.

Traveling by flight from Yakushima-cho to Iriomote-jima takes 13 hours. Alternatively, you can ride a ferry. Prepare for somewhat warmer weather when traveling from Yakushima-cho in December: high temperatures in Iriomote-jima hover around °F and lows are around °F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 22nd (Sun) early enough to ride a ferry to Ishigaki.

Things to do in Iriomote-jima

Parks Outdoors Nature
Find places to stay Dec 18 — 22:
Highlights from your plan
Iriomote Island ©
Iriomote Island
Pinaisara Falls ©
Pinaisara Falls
Kayaking & Canoeing

3
nights
Ishigaki

Ishigaki ©
Ishigaki, the most populous island in the chain, features the country's southernmost city and acts as a transport hub for exploring the landmasses that surround.
Get outdoors at Cape Hirakubozaki and Stand-Up Paddleboarding. Relax by the water at Kondoi Beach and Yonehara Beach. And it doesn't end there: paddle through the water with a kayaking and canoeing tour, enjoy breathtaking views from Tamatorizaki Observatory, and explore the gorgeous colors at Kabira Ishizaki Manta Scramble.

To find maps, more things to do, reviews, and tourist information, use the Ishigaki travel route builder tool.

Ride a ferry from Iriomote-jima to Ishigaki in 1.5 hours. In December, plan for daily highs up to °F, and evening lows to °F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 25th (Wed) early enough to travel to Miyakojima.

Things to do in Ishigaki

Outdoors Parks Adventure

Side Trip

Kondoi Beach
Find places to stay Dec 22 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
Cape Hirakubozaki ©
Cape Hirakubozaki
Kondoi Beach ©
Kondoi Beach
Yonehara Beach ©
Yonehara Beach

4
nights
Miyakojima

Miyakojima ©
A city jurisdiction formed after the merger of several towns in 2005, Miyakojima spans six linked-up islands.
You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Toguchi no Hama and Yabiji. Visit Aragusuku Beach and Tomori Imugya Beach for some beach relaxation. There's still lots to do: discover the deep blue sea with a scuba or snorkeling tour, take in the views from Irabu Ohashi, enjoy the sand and surf at Sunayama Beach, and don't miss a visit to Boraga Limestone Cave.

To see photos and tourist information, go to the Miyakojima trip planner.

You can fly from Ishigaki to Miyakojima in 2.5 hours. December in Miyakojima sees daily highs of °F and lows of °F at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 29th (Sun) to allow enough time to travel to Tokyo.

Things to do in Miyakojima

Outdoors Parks Beaches
Find places to stay Dec 25 — 29:
Highlights from your plan
Yonaha Maehama Beach ©
Yonaha Maehama Beach
Yabiji
Yabiji
Sunayama Beach ©
Sunayama Beach

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.
Let the collections at Edo-Tokyo Museum and Ghibli Museum Mitaka capture your imagination. Your cultural itinerary includes sights like Samurai Museum and Tokyo National Museum. There's lots more to do: take in the spiritual surroundings of Senso-ji Temple, don't miss a visit to Imperial Palace, take a stroll through Odaiba District, and get curious at National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation Miraikan.

To find traveler tips, reviews, where to stay, and more tourist information, refer to the Tokyo trip itinerary maker site.

You can fly from Miyakojima to Tokyo in 6 hours. When traveling from Miyakojima in December, plan for little chillier days in Tokyo, with highs around °F, while nights are colder with lows around °F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 3rd (Fri) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Tokyo

Museums Neighborhoods Historic Sites

Side Trip

Ghibli Museum Mitaka
Find places to stay Dec 29 — Jan 3:
Highlights from your plan
Tokyo National Museum ©
Tokyo National Museum
Ghibli Museum Mitaka ©
Ghibli Museum Mitaka
Asakusa Shrine ©
Asakusa Shrine

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