18 days in Japan, Busan & Seoul Itinerary

18 days in Japan, Busan & Seoul Itinerary

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Route & dates

18 days in Japan, Busan & Seoul Itinerary

Start: Jacksonville, United States
Fly:  17​h
1
Tokyo, Japan
— 4 nights
train:  3​h
2
Kyoto, Japan
— 2 nights
train:  30​min
3
Osaka, Japan
— 2 nights
Fly:  2​h
4
Busan, South Korea
— 3 nights
Fly:  3​h
5
Seoul, South Korea
— 5 nights
Fly:  18​h 30​min
End: Jacksonville, United States

4
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.
Your day-by-day itinerary now includes STREET KART Shinagawa MariCAR No. 2 as well as Owl cafe Akiba Fukurou. Explore hidden gems such as Nezu Shrine and Meigetsuin (Hydrangea Temple). Get some historical perspective at Kencho-ji Temple and Hokokuji Temple (Takedera Temple). Venture out of the city with trips to Naritasan Omote Sando (in Narita), Kamakura (Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine & Engaku-ji Temple) and Sankeien Gardens (in Naka).

For photos, maps, ratings, and other tourist information, go to the Tokyo travel itinerary planner.

Jacksonville, USA to Tokyo is an approximately 21-hour flight. You can also do a combination of train, shuttle, and flight; or do a combination of flight and train. The time zone difference moving from Eastern Standard Time (EST) to Japan Standard Time (JST) is 14 hours. When traveling from Jacksonville in May, plan for slightly colder days and about the same nights in Tokyo: temperatures range from 76°F by day to 61°F at night. On the 11th (Mon), you'll travel to Kyoto.

Things to do in Tokyo

Historic Sites Tours Nightlife

Side Trips

Kamakura, Naritasan Omote Sando, Sankeien Gardens
Highlights from your plan
Asakusa Shrine ©
Asakusa Shrine
Nezu Shrine ©
Nezu Shrine
Kencho-ji Temple
Kencho-ji Temple

2
nights
Kyoto, Japan

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.
On the 11th (Mon), contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Kinkaku-ji, steep yourself in history at Ninna-ji Temple, and then contemplate the long history of Kitano Tenmangu Shrine. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 12th (Tue): contemplate the long history of Genkoan, take in the spiritual surroundings of Kifune-jinja Shrine, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Sanzen-in Temple, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Shoren-in Temple (Shoren-in Monzeki), and finally steep yourself in history at Sanjusangendo Temple.

For photos, maps, ratings, and tourist information, go to the Kyoto road trip planner.

Traveling by train from Tokyo to Kyoto takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or drive. In May, daily temperatures in Kyoto can reach 77°F, while at night they dip to 59°F. You will have some time to spend on the 13th (Wed) before leaving for Osaka.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Parks
Highlights from your plan
Kennin-ji Temple ©
Kennin-ji Temple
Ninna-ji Temple ©
Ninna-ji Temple
Kitano Tenmangu Shrine ©
Kitano Tenmangu Shrine

2
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.
Kick off your visit on the 13th (Wed): see the interesting displays at Mint Museum, examine the collection at CUPNOODLES MUSEUM OSAKA IKEDA, then don't miss a visit to The Symphony Hall, and finally get to know the fascinating history of Hozenji Yokocho. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: steep yourself in history at Sumiyoshi Taisha Shrine, take in the spiritual surroundings of Horyu-ji Temple, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Chuguji Temple, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Toshodaiji Temple, and finally appreciate the history behind Todai-ji Temple.

To see traveler tips, maps, ratings, and other tourist information, read our Osaka road trip planning tool .

Osaka is very close to Kyoto. May in Osaka sees daily highs of 77°F and lows of 60°F at night. You will leave for Busan on the 15th (Fri).

Things to do in Osaka

Historic Sites Museums

Side Trips

Nara, Ikaruga-cho, CUPNOODLES MUSEUM OSAKA IKEDA
Highlights from your plan
Toshodai-ji Temple ©
Toshodai-ji Temple
Horyu-ji Temple ©
Horyu-ji Temple
Sumiyoshi Taisha Shrine ©
Sumiyoshi Taisha Shrine

3
nights
Busan, South Korea

Busan ©
The country's second city, Busan has often been referred to as South Korea's summer capital.
Beomeosa Temple and Yeojwacheon Stream will appeal to history buffs. Do some cultural sightseeing at Haedong Yonggung Temple and Tomb of King Suro. Explore Busan's surroundings by going to Tongdosa Temple (in Yangsan) and Gimhae (Birthplace of President Roh Moo-hyun & Gimhae National Museum). There's much more to do: enjoy the sand and surf at Haeundae Beach, snap pictures at Busan Harbor Bridge, contemplate the long history of Geumjung Mt. fortress, and stroll through Dadaepo Beach.

To find reviews, ratings, traveler tips, and other tourist information, refer to the Busan trip itinerary planner .

Fly from Osaka to Busan in 5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and train; or do a combination of train and flight. In May, plan for daily highs up to 75°F, and evening lows to 57°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 5th (Tue) so you can travel to Seoul.

Things to do in Busan

Historic Sites Parks Beaches

Side Trips

Gimhae, Tongdosa Temple, Yeojwacheon Stream
Highlights from your plan
Yeojwacheon Stream ©
Yeojwacheon Stream
Beomeosa Temple ©
Beomeosa Temple
Haedong Yonggung Temple ©
Haedong Yonggung Temple

5
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.
Hongik University has been added to your itinerary. Gyeongbokgung Palace and Changdeokgung Palace will appeal to history buffs. Your cultural itinerary includes sights like Changgyeonggung Palace and Bongeunsa Temple. And it doesn't end there: appreciate the history behind Jogyesa Temple, take an in-depth tour of Seodaemun Prison History Hall, admire the striking features of Deoksugung, and contemplate the long history of Gwanghwamun Gate.

To see reviews, photos, ratings, and tourist information, you can read our Seoul road trip site .

Traveling by flight from Busan to Seoul takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or drive. In May, daily temperatures in Seoul can reach 75°F, while at night they dip to 57°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 10th (Sun) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Seoul

Historic Sites Museums Parks
Highlights from your plan
Gyeongbokgung Palace ©
Gyeongbokgung Palace
Changgyeonggung Palace ©
Changgyeonggung Palace
Changdeokgung Palace ©
Changdeokgung Palace

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