18 days in Japan Itinerary

18 days in Japan Itinerary

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Route & dates

18 days in Japan Itinerary

Start: Johannesburg
+2
Fly + Subway + Train:  22​h
1
Hiroshima
— 3 nights
Train:  1​h
2
Himeji
— 2 nights
Train:  45​min
3
Kyoto
— 5 nights
Train:  2​h 45​min
4
Tokyo
— 6 nights
Fly:  22​h
End: Johannesburg

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.
Change things up with these side-trips from Hiroshima: Ohara Museum of Art (in Kurashiki), Okayama Korakuen Garden (in Okayama) and Hatsukaichi (Itsukushima Shrine Torii, Itsukushima Shrine, & more). Next up on the itinerary: examine the collection at Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum and steep yourself in history at Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima.

To see more things to do, traveler tips, photos, and other tourist information, use the Hiroshima travel route builder tool .

Johannesburg, South Africa to Hiroshima is an approximately 22-hour combination of flight and train. You can also fly. You'll lose 7 hours traveling from Johannesburg to Hiroshima due to the time zone difference. While traveling from Johannesburg, expect somewhat warmer days and much hotter nights in Hiroshima, ranging from highs of 36°C to lows of 28°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 5th (Sun) to allow enough time to take a train to Himeji.

Things to do in Hiroshima

Historic Sites Museums Parks

Side Trips

Hatsukaichi, Ohara Museum of Art, Okayama Korakuen Garden
Highlights from your plan
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum ©
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima ©
Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima
Atomic Bomb Dome ©
Atomic Bomb Dome

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.
Kick off your visit on the 6th (Mon): take in nature's colorful creations at Koko-en Garden, then explore the historical opulence of Himeji Castle, then don't miss a visit to Shoshazan Engyoji, and finally stroll around Kunimi no Mori Park. Here are some ideas for day two: contemplate the long history of Yoneda Taishiji Temple, take in the awesome beauty at Mt. Takamikura, and then don't miss a visit to Akashi Kaikyo Bridge.

To see other places to visit, maps, photos, and tourist information, read our Himeji day trip tool .

Traveling by train from Hiroshima to Himeji takes an hour. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and train. Expect a daytime high around 33°C in July, and nighttime lows around 29°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 7th (Tue) early enough to catch the train to Kyoto.

Things to do in Himeji

Parks Historic Sites Nature

Side Trips

Kunimi no Mori Park, Mt. Takamikura, Akashi Kaikyo Bridge, Yoneda Taishiji Temple
Highlights from your plan
Koko-en ©
Koko-en
Himeji Castle ©
Himeji Castle
Shoshazan Engyoji ©
Shoshazan Engyoji

5
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.
Venture out of the city with trips to Osaka (Universal Studios Japan, Osaka Castle, & more). And it doesn't end there: contemplate the long history of Kiyomizu-dera Temple, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine, take an in-depth tour of Kyoto Museum of Traditional Crafts Fureaikan, and wander the streets of Gion.

To find more things to do, maps, photos, and more tourist information, refer to the Kyoto attractions planner .

Traveling by train from Himeji to Kyoto takes an hour. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Traveling from Himeji in July, you will find days in Kyoto are somewhat warmer (37°C), and nights are about the same (28°C). Finish your sightseeing early on the 12th (Sun) so you can travel to Tokyo.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Theme Parks Neighborhoods

Side Trip

Osaka
Highlights from your plan
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine ©
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine
Nijo Castle ©
Nijo Castle
Universal Studios Japan ©
Universal Studios Japan

6
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.
Tokyo is known for historic sites, shopping, parks, museums, and nightlife. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: make a trip to Meiji Jingu Shrine, take a stroll through Odaiba, admire the landmark architecture of Tokyo Tower, and take in panoramic vistas at Tokyo Skytree.

To see more things to do, maps, traveler tips, and other tourist information, use the Tokyo trip website .

Traveling by train from Kyoto to Tokyo takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or drive. In July, plan for daily highs up to 36°C, and evening lows to 27°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 18th (Sat) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Tokyo

Museums Neighborhoods Historic Sites

Side Trip

Tokyo Disneyland
Highlights from your plan
Owl cafe Akiba Fukurou ©
Owl cafe Akiba Fukurou
Meiji Jingu Shrine ©
Meiji Jingu Shrine
Tokyo Tower ©
Tokyo Tower

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