18 days in Japan Itinerary

18 days in Japan Itinerary

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Route & dates

18 days in Japan Itinerary

Start: Tokyo
1
Tokyo
— 2 nights
train:  2​h 30​min
2
Hamamatsu
— 3 nights
train:  1​h 45​min
3
Kyoto
— 5 nights
train:  1​h 45​min
4
Hiroshima
— 2 nights
train:  2​h 30​min
5
Beppu
— 1 night
+2
train + subway + Fly:  5​h 45​min
6
Ishigaki
— 4 nights
Fly:  5​h 15​min
End: Tokyo

2
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.
Start off your visit on the 7th (Mon): contemplate the long history of Kyu Iwasaki-tei Teien, explore the world behind art at teamLab Borderless, and then take in the spiritual surroundings of Kawagoe Hikawa Shrine. Keep things going the next day: see the interesting displays at Fire Museum, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Ikegami Hommon-ji Temple, then steep yourself in history at Oyama Afuri Shrine, and finally take in the spiritual surroundings of Tokyo Camii & Turkish Culture Center.

For maps, where to stay, photos, and other tourist information, refer to the Tokyo online tour itinerary planner .

If you are flying in from Switzerland, the closest major airports are Tokyo Haneda International Airport, Narita International Airport and Hyakuri Airport. In October in Tokyo, expect temperatures between 26°C during the day and 18°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 9th (Wed) to allow enough time to travel to Hamamatsu.

Things to do in Tokyo

Historic Sites Museums Shopping

Side Trips

Oyama Afuri Shrine, Kawagoe Hikawa Shrine
Highlights from your plan
Kyu Iwasakitei Teien ©
Kyu Iwasakitei Teien
Hozomon ©
Hozomon
Kawagoe Hikawa Shrine ©
Kawagoe Hikawa Shrine

3
nights
Hamamatsu

Hamamatsu ©
An important industrial hub with a sizable immigrant population from South America, Hamamatsu has developed a taste for international cuisine and arts.
Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Former Takatenjin Castle Site and Akihasanhongu Akiha Shrine Shimosha. Visit Fumon-ji Temple and Hachimangu Shrine for their historical value. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Hamamatsu: Iwata Old Mitsuke School (in Iwata) and Arai Beach (in Kosai). There's still lots to do: explore the world behind art at Ryoun-ji Temple, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Fudo-ji Temple, steep yourself in history at Meizen Kinpara House, and get engrossed in the history at Hamamatsu City Regional Heritage Center.

To see traveler tips, photos, and tourist information, read Hamamatsu trip itinerary site .

Take a train from Tokyo to Hamamatsu in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and train. Expect a daytime high around 24°C in October, and nighttime lows around 20°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 12th (Sat) to allow time for the train ride to Kyoto.

Things to do in Hamamatsu

Historic Sites Parks Outdoors

Side Trips

Arai Beach, Former Takatenjin Castle Site, Iwata Old Mitsuke School, Fumon-ji Temple
Highlights from your plan
Fumon-ji Temple ©
Fumon-ji Temple
Fudo-ji Temple ©
Fudo-ji Temple
Takatsuka Kumano Shrine ©
Takatsuka Kumano Shrine

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.
Your cultural itinerary includes sights like Jojakkoji Temple and Kashihara Jingu. Otagi Nenbutsu-ji Temple and Shinnyodo Temple will appeal to history buffs. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Kyoto: Otsu (Hiyoshi Taisha, Takebe Taisha Shrine, & more), Asuka-mura (Asuka-dera Temple & Ishibutai Tomb) and Gango-ji Temple (in Nara). There's lots more to do: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Mii-dera Temple (Onjo-ji Temple), wander the streets of Shinbashi Dori, steep yourself in history at Genkoan, and get to know the fascinating history of Nenenokomichi.

To find other places to visit, where to stay, photos, and more tourist information, go to the Kyoto travel itinerary planner .

Getting from Hamamatsu to Kyoto by train takes about 2 hours. Other options: drive; or take a bus. In October in Kyoto, expect temperatures between 27°C during the day and 18°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 17th (Thu) to allow time to take a train to Hiroshima.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Neighborhoods

Side Trips

Otsu, Asuka-mura, Kongorin-ji Temple, Gango-ji Temple, Saimyo-ji Temple
Highlights from your plan
Jojakkoji Temple ©
Jojakkoji Temple
Ishiyamadera Temple ©
Ishiyamadera Temple
Otagi Nenbutsu-ji Temple ©
Otagi Nenbutsu-ji Temple

2
nights
Hiroshima

Hiroshima ©
Grapple with history and appreciate modernity in Hiroshima, a city known around the world for its tragic past and inspiring rebirth.
On the 17th (Thu), take in the spiritual surroundings of Miyama Shrine, tour the pleasant surroundings at Mikasahama Beach, then steep yourself in history at Former Naval Academy, and finally wander the streets of Saijo. Keep things going the next day: take in the spiritual surroundings of Mitaki Temple, see the sky in a new way at Hiroshima Children's Museum, see the interesting displays at Honkawa Peace Museum, then appreciate the history behind Peace Flame, and finally indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas.

To find ratings, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read our Hiroshima trip planner .

Take a train from Kyoto to Hiroshima in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In October, daily temperatures in Hiroshima can reach 26°C, while at night they dip to 19°C. On the 19th (Sat), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can take a train to Beppu.

Things to do in Hiroshima

Historic Sites Museums Neighborhoods

Side Trips

Hatsukaichi, Saijo, Former Naval Academy
Highlights from your plan
Mitaki Temple ©
Mitaki Temple
Former Naval Academy ©
Former Naval Academy
Miyama Shrine ©
Miyama Shrine

1
night
Beppu

Beppu ©
The resort town of Beppu puts the geothermal nature of the region to good use.
Start off your visit on the 19th (Sat): see the interesting displays at Beppu City Traditional Bamboo Crafts Center and then take in the spiritual surroundings of Yusuhara Hachiman Shrine.

To find more things to do, other places to visit, where to stay, and tourist information, refer to the Beppu trip website .

Getting from Hiroshima to Beppu by train takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of car and ferry. In October, plan for daily highs up to 26°C, and evening lows to 20°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 20th (Sun) early enough to travel to Ishigaki.

Things to do in Beppu

Shopping Outdoors Nature

Side Trip

Yusuhara Hachiman Shrine
Highlights from your plan
Shidakako Lake ©
Shidakako Lake

4
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.
Your inner history buff will appreciate Island Countryside Settlement and Tojinbaka. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Nakamoto Beach and Rhizophoraceae Plant Community of Fukidogawa River. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Ishigaki: Iko Pier (in Kuro-shima), Ubutaki Lookouts (in Kohama-jima) and Barasu Island (in Iriomote-jima). There's more to do: wander the streets of Misaki Town and kick back and relax at Sunset Beach.

To find maps, reviews, more things to do, and other tourist information, read our Ishigaki online tour itinerary planner .

You can do a combination of train and flight from Beppu to Ishigaki in 6 hours. Another option is to fly. Traveling from Beppu in October, expect Ishigaki to be a bit warmer, temps between 34°C and 28°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 24th (Thu) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Ishigaki

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trips

Kuro-shima, Taketomi-jima, Ubutaki Lookouts, Barasu Island
Highlights from your plan
Barasu Island ©
Barasu Island
Tojinbaka ©
Tojinbaka
Sunset Beach ©
Sunset Beach

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