18 days in East Asia Itinerary

18 days in East Asia Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Japan trip builder

Make it your trip
1
Tokyo
— 3 nights
Train
2
Kyoto
— 3 nights
Train
3
Hiroshima
— 1 night
Train to Okayama, Ferry to Naoshima-cho
4
Naoshima-cho
— 3 nights
Drive
5
Shodoshima-cho
— 2 nights
Drive
6
Kitayama-mura
— 1 day
Drive
7
Osaka
— 2 nights
Drive
8
Kobe
— 2 nights
Fly

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Tokyo

— 3 nights
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 Ueno District and Yanaka District. You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Omoide Yokocho and Tokyo City View Observation Deck (Roppongihills). There's still lots to do: make a trip to Chidorigafuchi, admire the striking features of Tokyo Central Railway Station, take a stroll through Takeshita Street, and explore the activities along Meguro River.

To find traveler tips, more things to do, where to stay, and more tourist information, read Tokyo online trip planner.

If you are flying in from United Kingdom, the closest major aiports are Tokyo Haneda International Airport, Narita International Airport, Ibaraki Airport / JASDF Hyakuri Air Base and Yokota Air Base. In December, daytime highs in Tokyo are 14°C, while nighttime lows are 4°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 22nd (Sun) to allow enough time to travel to Kyoto.

Things to do in Tokyo

Neighborhoods · Parks · Shopping · Museums

Side Trip

Kyoto

— 3 nights
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.
Do some cultural sightseeing at Sannenzaka Ninenzaka and Kyoto Shibori Museum. You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Kyoto Tower and Tofuku-ji Temple. And it doesn't end there: browse the different shops at Kyoto Station Building, wander the streets of Arashiyama, take in the spiritual surroundings of Ginkakuji Temple, and go for a walk through Philosopher's Walk.

For photos, more things to do, maps, and other tourist information, use the Kyoto online road trip planner.

Take a train from Tokyo to Kyoto in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or drive. Expect a daytime high around 13°C in December, and nighttime lows around 4°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 25th (Wed) early enough to take a train to Hiroshima.

Things to do in Kyoto

Neighborhoods · Historic Sites · Shopping · Zoos & Aquariums

Hiroshima

— 1 night

City of Peace

Grapple with history and appreciate modernity in Hiroshima, a city known around the world for its tragic past and inspiring rebirth.
Kick off your visit on the 26th (Thu): see where the action happens at MAZDA Zoom-Zoom Stadium Hiroshima, explore the world behind art at Hiroshima Museum of Art, pause for some photo ops at Ground Zero, take an in-depth tour of Hiroshima National Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims, then appreciate the history behind Peace Bell, and finally steep yourself in history at Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima.

To see where to stay, reviews, traveler tips, and tourist information, you can read our Hiroshima trip website.

You can take a train from Kyoto to Hiroshima in 2.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. Expect a daytime high around 13°C in December, and nighttime lows around 4°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 26th (Thu) early enough to travel to Naoshima-cho.

Things to do in Hiroshima

Museums · Historic Sites

Naoshima-cho

— 3 nights
On a vacation in Naoshima-cho, a charming island town in the Seto Inland Sea, you can discover its numerous contemporary art museums, sculptures, installations, and galleries.
Your cultural itinerary includes sights like Benesse House Museum and Kinojo Castle. You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Okayama Astronomical Museum and Old Yakage Honjin Ishii Family Residence. Change things up with these side-trips from Naoshima-cho: Takahashi (Raikyuji Temple & Takahashi City Old Samurai Residences), Miyama Park (in Tamano) and Yakage Post Station (in Yakage-cho). Next up on the itinerary: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Shiromineji Temple, enjoy breathtaking views from Play Park Gold Tower, head off the coast to Shiraishi Island, and get outside with Shibukawa Coast.

For where to stay, ratings, reviews, and tourist information, read Naoshima-cho trip planner.

You can do a combination of train and ferry from Hiroshima to Naoshima-cho in 4 hours. Another option is to do a combination of bus and ferry. Expect a daytime high around 11°C in December, and nighttime lows around 3°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 29th (Sun) to allow enough time to drive to Shodoshima-cho.

Things to do in Naoshima-cho

Parks · Historic Sites · Nature · Outdoors

Side Trips

Shodoshima-cho

— 2 nights
On an island famed for its gorgeous landscapes and seaside vistas, the town of Shodoshima-cho serves as the perfect getaway from the hustle and bustle of Japanese city life.
On the 30th (Mon), visit Yama-Roku Shoyu, take an in-depth tour of Kokonoura Museum of History and Culture, stop by Hinase Fishermens's Market, take in panoramic vistas at Kankakei Summit Observation, then explore the stunning scenery at Kankakei Gorge, and finally take an in-depth tour of Marukin Soysouce Memorial. On the next day, admire the natural beauty at Olive Garden, head off the coast to Hinase Islands, and then take in nature's colorful creations at Ushimado Olive Garden.

To find other places to visit, ratings, reviews, and other tourist information, use the Shodoshima-cho trip planner.

You can drive from Naoshima-cho to Shodoshima-cho in 3 hours. In December, plan for daily highs up to 11°C, and evening lows to 3°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 31st (Tue) early enough to travel to Kitayama-mura.

Things to do in Shodoshima-cho

Parks · Nature · Museums · Shopping

Side Trips

Kitayama-mura

— 1 day
Start off your visit on the 1st (Wed): stop by Michi-no-Eki Okutoro, see the interesting displays at Kiwacho Mine Museum, then don't miss a visit to Maruyama Senmai Rice Field, and finally appreciate the views at Doro River Valley.

For more things to do, ratings, maps, and tourist information, you can read our Kitayama-mura online driving holiday planner.

Traveling by car from Shodoshima-cho to Kitayama-mura takes 7.5 hours. Traveling from Shodoshima-cho in January, plan for somewhat warmer nights in Kitayama-mura, with lows around 5°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 1st (Wed) early enough to travel to Osaka.

Things to do in Kitayama-mura

Nature · Parks · Shopping · Museums

Side Trips

Osaka

— 2 nights
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.
Kick off your visit on the 2nd (Thu): identify plant and animal life at Nara Park, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Todai-ji Temple, then step into the grandiose world of Osaka Castle, and finally take a stroll through Shinsaibashi-suji Shopping Street. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 3rd (Fri): contemplate the long history of Osaka City Central Hall, take in panoramic vistas at Kuchu Teien Observatory, don't miss a visit to Kuromon Market, then get to know the fascinating history of Hozenji Yokocho, then wander the streets of Minami (Namba), and finally meet the residents at Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan.

Plan a Osaka trip in moments using our itinerary builder.

You can drive from Kitayama-mura to Osaka in 3.5 hours. Expect a bit cooler evenings in Osaka when traveling from Kitayama-mura in January, with lows around 1°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 3rd (Fri) so you can drive to Kobe.

Things to do in Osaka

Historic Sites · Shopping · Neighborhoods · Parks

Side Trip

Kobe

— 2 nights
Walkable, small, and aesthetically charming, Kobe has served as Japan's first and premier international trading outpost since opening to trade with China in the mid-19th century.
On the 4th (Sat), meet the residents at Kobe Oji Zoo, snap pictures at Akashi Kaikyo Bridge, take in panoramic vistas at Kobe Port Tower, then examine the collection at Kawasaki Good Times World, then stop by Kitano Ijinkan-gai, and finally steep yourself in history at Kobe Kitano Museum (Ijinkan). Keep things going the next day: stroll around Akashi Kaikyo National Government Park.

To find ratings, reviews, more things to do, and other tourist information, you can read our Kobe trip builder.

You can drive from Osaka to Kobe in an hour. Alternatively, you can take a train; or take a bus. In January, daytime highs in Kobe are 10°C, while nighttime lows are 3°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Sun) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Kobe

Parks · Zoos & Aquariums · Historic Sites · Neighborhoods

Side Trips