20 days in Japan Itinerary

20 days in Japan Itinerary

Kelly Hollman

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Qantas QF472 + Qantas QF33
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1
Osaka
— 6 nights
Drive
2
Kyoto
— 5 nights
Drive
3
Kanazawa
— 2 nights
Train
4
Tokyo
— 5 nights
Qantas QF80
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6
nights
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.
You've now added Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum to your itinerary. Venture out of the city with trips to Mt. Koya (in Koya-cho), Himeji Castle (in Himeji) and Nara (Kofuku-ji Temple, Nigatsu-do Temple, &more). There's lots more to do: get in on the family fun at Universal Studios Japan, wander the streets of Dotombori District, don't miss a visit to Kuromon Market, and learn and have fun at Ninja-Do.

To find out how to plan a trip to Osaka, use our trip itinerary maker.

Melbourne, Australia to Osaka is an approximately 15.5-hour flight. The time zone changes from Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST) to Japan Standard Time (JST), which is usually a -1 hour difference. Traveling from Melbourne in March, expect nights in Osaka to be little chillier, around 5°C, while days are cooler, around 16°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 1st (Wed) to allow enough time to drive to Kyoto.

Things to do in Osaka

Theme Parks · Historic Sites · Parks · Museums

Side Trips

5
nights
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 day by day itinerary now includes Bamboo Forest Street, Monkey Park Iwatayama and Nishiki Market Shopping District. Venture out of the city with trips to Miyazu (Kanabiki Waterfall & Amanohashidate). And it doesn't end there: take in the spiritual surroundings of Kiyomizu-dera Temple, steep yourself in history at Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine, look for gifts at Fuuka-Kimono, and go for a walk through Gion.

To see traveler tips, other places to visit, maps, and tourist information, you can read our Kyoto road trip website.

You can drive from Osaka to Kyoto in 1.5 hours. Other options are to take a train; or take a bus. April in Kyoto sees daily highs of 22°C and lows of 11°C at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 6th (Mon) so you can go by car to Kanazawa.

Things to do in Kyoto

Neighborhoods · Historic Sites · Parks · Shopping

Side Trip

2
nights
Kanazawa

An old castle town largely unspoiled during World War II, Kanazawa features well-preserved architecture spread across a range of districts.
Start off your visit on the 6th (Mon): steep yourself in history at Nomura Family Samurai House, admire the striking features of Kanazawa Station, don't miss a visit to Omicho Market, stop by Higashichaya Old Town, then step into the grandiose world of Kanazawa Castle, and finally take in nature's colorful creations at Kenrokuen Garden. Keep things going the next day: make a trip to Kanazawa Higashi Chayagai Kaikaro, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Ninja Temple, and then take a stroll through Nagamachi Neighborhood.

To find photos, ratings, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read our Kanazawa vacation planner.

Traveling by car from Kyoto to Kanazawa takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or take a bus. Expect slightly colder evenings in Kanazawa when traveling from Kyoto in April, with lows around 8°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 8th (Wed) to allow enough time to travel to Tokyo.

Things to do in Kanazawa

Historic Sites · Neighborhoods · Parks

5
nights
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 teamLab Borderless as well as Robot Restaurant. Get out of town with these interesting Tokyo side-trips: Lake Kawaguchi (in Fujikawaguchiko-machi) and Tokyo Disneyland (in Maihama). The adventure continues: admire the natural beauty at Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden, don't miss a visit to Meiji Jingu Shrine, have some family-friendly fun at Samurai Armor Photo Studio, and admire the striking features of Tokyo Tower.

For traveler tips and other tourist information, use the Tokyo trip planning app.

Take a train from Kanazawa to Tokyo in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or drive. Traveling from Kanazawa in April, expect somewhat warmer with lows of 12°C in Tokyo. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 13th (Mon) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Tokyo

Theme Parks · Parks · Museums · Historic Sites

Side Trips

Japan travel guide

4.3
Sacred & Religious Sites · Landmarks · Historic Sites
Land of the Rising Sun
Part of a volcanic archipelago that encompasses over 6,800 islands, Japan remains one of Asia's most fascinating tourist destinations, where a blend of modernity and tradition creates a look and feel completely different from any other place in the world. A tour of Japan lets you discover big cities filled with ancient temples and innovative skyscrapers, as well as quiet country landscapes dotted with castles, perfectly manicured gardens, cherry orchards, and primeval forests seemingly untouched by the hand of mass tourism. Many tourists on vacation in Japan devote lots of time to the country's unique cuisine, prepared with painstaking attention to detail and a genius for simple yet effective presentation.