20 days in Japan Itinerary

20 days in Japan Itinerary

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Route & dates

20 days in Japan Itinerary

Start: Panama City
Fly + Drive:  36 h
1
Nagaoka
— 3 nights
Drive:  3 h 45 min
2
Tokyo
— 3 nights
Train:  1 h 45 min
3
Nagoya
— 1 night
Train:  45 min
4
Kyoto
— 3 nights
Train:  30 min
5
Osaka
— 2 nights
Train:  1 h 45 min
6
Hiroshima
— 4 nights
Drive + Fly:  14 h
End: Panama City

3
nights
Nagaoka

Nagaoka ©
Nagaoka is a city located in the central part of Niigata Prefecture, Japan. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Yahiko Shrine and Nishikaigan Park. Change things up with these side-trips from Nagaoka: Niigata (Fukushima-gata, Sekiyahama Beach, & more). There's lots more to do: walk around Echigo Hillside Park, observe the fascinating underwater world at Teradomari Aquarium, make a trip to Hotokusan Inari Inner Shrine, and examine the collection at Nagaoka Gear Museum.

To find more things to do, traveler tips, where to stay, and other tourist information, refer to the Nagaoka online travel planner .

Panama City, Panama to Nagaoka is an approximately 36-hour combination of flight and car. The time zone changes from Eastern Standard Time to Japan Standard Time, which is usually a 14 hour difference. Traveling from Panama City in July, you will find days in Nagaoka are little chillier (32°C), and nights are about the same (26°C). Wrap up your sightseeing on the 1st (Sat) to allow time to travel to Tokyo.

Things to do in Nagaoka

Parks Beaches Outdoors

Side Trips

Niigata, Yahiko Shrine
Highlights from your plan
Yukyuzan Park ©
Yukyuzan Park
Yahiko Shrine ©
Yahiko Shrine
Echigo Hillside Park ©
Echigo Hillside Park

3
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.
Kick off your visit on the 2nd (Sun): take a stroll through Ueno, get your game on at Samurai Armor Photo Studio, don't miss a visit to Meiji Jingu Shrine, then take in panoramic vistas at Tokyo International Airport (Haneda) Terminal No2 Observation Deck, and finally take a leisurely stroll along Yokohama Intl Passenger Terminal. On your second day here, make a trip to Tokyo Tower, enjoy breathtaking views from Observatory, Seaside Top, indulge your taste buds at Food & Drink, then ponder the world of politics at Tokyo Metropolitan Government Buildings, and finally get great views at Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden.

To find more things to do, ratings, maps, and more tourist information, use the Tokyo trip itinerary builder .

Drive from Nagaoka to Tokyo in 4 hours. August in Tokyo sees daily highs of 36°C and lows of 28°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 4th (Tue) so you can take a train to Nagoya.

Things to do in Tokyo

Tours Fun & Games Parks

Side Trip

Yokohama Intl Passenger Terminal
Highlights from your plan
Samurai Armor Photo Studio ©
Samurai Armor Photo Studio
Meiji Jingu Shrine ©
Meiji Jingu Shrine

1
night
Nagoya

Nagoya ©
Known nationally as an industrial heartland, Nagoya boasts a far more cosmopolitan and cultural core than its reputation would lead you to believe.
On the 4th (Tue), examine the collection at Toyota Commemorative Museum of Industry and Technology, engage your brain at Nagoya City Science Museum, then make a trip to Osu Shopping Street, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Atsuta Jingu Shrine, and finally get up close and personal with brilliant marine life at Port of Nagoya Public Aquarium. On the next day, explore the historical opulence of Nagoya Castle, explore the world behind art at Tokugawa Art Museum, contemplate the waterfront views at Yamazaki River, examine the collection at SCMAGLEV and Railway Park, then examine the collection at Toyota Kaikan Museum, and finally walk around Tsuruma Park.

To see ratings, more things to do, traveler tips, and more tourist information, refer to the Nagoya journey builder tool .

Getting from Tokyo to Nagoya by train takes about 2 hours. Other options: drive; or do a combination of flight and train. In August, daytime highs in Nagoya are 34°C, while nighttime lows are 28°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 5th (Wed) early enough to catch the train to Kyoto.

Things to do in Nagoya

Museums Parks Zoos & Aquariums

Side Trip

Toyota Kaikan Museum
Highlights from your plan
Osu Shopping Street ©
Osu Shopping Street
SCMAGLEV and Railway Park ©
SCMAGLEV and Railway Park

3
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.
Explore hidden gems such as Mimurotoji Temple and Mt. Kurama. Change things up with a short trip to Obakusan Manpuku - ji Temple in Uji (about 36 minutes away). There's still lots to do: contemplate the long history of Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine, take in the spiritual surroundings of Kifune Shrine, go for a walk through Arashiyama, and admire the striking features of Ninna-ji Temple.

To see traveler tips, where to stay, reviews, and tourist information, read our Kyoto online holiday builder .

You can take a train from Nagoya to Kyoto in an hour. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. When traveling from Nagoya in August, plan for a bit warmer days and about the same nights in Kyoto: temperatures range from 39°C by day to 29°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 9th (Sun) to allow time to take a train to Osaka.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Neighborhoods Parks

Side Trip

Uji
Highlights from your plan
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine ©
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine
Shimogamo Jinja ©
Shimogamo Jinja
Nijo Castle ©
Nijo Castle

2
nights
Osaka

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.
Start off your visit on the 9th (Sun): find something for the whole family at Universal Studios Japan and then make a trip to Umeda Sky Building. Keep things going the next day: step into the grandiose world of Osaka Castle, indulge in some culinary diversions at a local gastronomic tour, then appreciate the extensive heritage of Hozenji Yokocho, and finally walk around Nakanoshima Park.

To see other places to visit, ratings, more things to do, and more tourist information, use the Osaka trip itinerary builder website .

Osaka is just a short distance from Kyoto. Expect a daytime high around 39°C in August, and nighttime lows around 29°C. On the 11th (Tue), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can travel to Hiroshima.

Things to do in Osaka

Theme Parks Historic Sites Tours
Highlights from your plan
Universal Studios Japan ©
Universal Studios Japan
Umeda Sky Building ©
Umeda Sky Building
Osaka Castle ©
Osaka Castle

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.
Step off the beaten path and head to Peace Bell and Setonaikai. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Hiroshima: Itsukushima Shrine (in Hatsukaichi) and JMSDF Kure Museum (in Kure). There's still lots to do: see the interesting displays at Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, contemplate the long history of Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima, and pause for some photo ops at Memorial Tower to the Mobilized Students.

For reviews, ratings, and other tourist information, read Hiroshima trip planner .

Take a train from Osaka to Hiroshima in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of flight and train. In August in Hiroshima, expect temperatures between 36°C during the day and 29°C at night. You will leave for home on the 15th (Sat).

Things to do in Hiroshima

Historic Sites Museums Parks

Side Trips

JMSDF Kure Museum, Itsukushima Shrine
Highlights from your plan
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum ©
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
JMSDF Kure Museum ©
JMSDF Kure Museum
Peace Bell ©
Peace Bell

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