42 days in Japan Itinerary

42 days in Japan Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Japan visit planner

Make it your trip
Fly
1
Tokyo
— 2 nights
Train
2
Sendai
— 2 nights
Train
3
Aomori
— 2 nights
Fly
4
Sapporo
— 6 nights
Fly
5
Tokyo
— 7 nights
Train
6
Nagoya
— 2 nights
Train
7
Kyoto
— 3 nights
Drive
8
Osaka
— 2 nights
Drive
9
Koya-cho
— 2 nights
Drive
10
Nara
— 2 nights
Drive
11
Osaka
— 2 nights
Drive
12
Kobe
— 2 nights
Train
13
Hiroshima
— 2 nights
Train
14
Nagasaki
— 2 nights
Fly
15
Tokyo
— 2 nights
Fly

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Tokyo

— 2 nights
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.
On the 2nd (Sun), contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Ryusen-ji Temple (Meguro Fudoson), contemplate the long history of Kawasaki Daishi, then get in on the family fun at Gundam Front Tokyo, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Atago Shrine, and finally explore the world behind art at Mitsubishi Ichigokan Museum. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 3rd (Mon): contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Toyokawa Inari Tokyo Betsuin, stop by Kagurazaka, steep yourself in history at Toshogu Shrine, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Shibamata Taishakuten (Taishakuten Daikyoji Temple), and finally take in the spiritual surroundings of Musashi Ichinomiya Hikawa Shrine.

Plan my Tokyo trip by asking Inspirock to come up with tips and suggestions.

Auckland, New Zealand to Tokyo is an approximately 14-hour flight. You'll gain 3 hours traveling from Auckland to Tokyo due to the time zone difference. When traveling from Auckland in January, plan for little chillier days in Tokyo, with highs around 11°C, while nights are cooler with lows around 1°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 3rd (Mon) so you can take a train to Sendai.

Things to do in Tokyo

Historic Sites · Museums · Neighborhoods · Theme Parks

Side Trips

Sendai

— 2 nights
Human history and nature combine seamlessly in Sendai, with the influence of each never far away in this green and storied city.
On the 4th (Tue), don't miss a visit to Osaki Hachiman Shrine, make a trip to Sendaijo Ato, contemplate the waterfront views at Hirose River, then don't miss a visit to Sendai Station, then wander the streets of Sunmall Ichibancho, and finally don't miss a visit to Jozenji-dori Avenue. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 5th (Wed): fly down the slopes at Miyagi Zao Eboshi Resort.

Plan my day in Sendai using traveler tips and tourist information provided by Inspirock.

Take a train from Tokyo to Sendai in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or drive. While traveling from Tokyo, expect a bit cooler days and about the same nights in Sendai, ranging from highs of 5°C to lows of 2°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Wed) early enough to take a train to Aomori.

Things to do in Sendai

Parks · Winter Sports · Outdoors · Historic Sites

Side Trip

Aomori

— 2 nights
Facing Mutsu Bay on the northernmost tip of Honshu, Aomori is a bustling regional capital known for its fresh seafood and modern architecture.
Kick off your visit on the 6th (Thu): don't miss a visit to Shin Aomori Station, make a trip to Jomon Jiyukan, admire the masterpieces at Aomori Museum of Art, get to know the fascinating history of Sannai-Maruyama Site, then see the interesting displays at Hakkodasan Snow March Distress Museum, and finally hit the slopes at Moya Hills. Here are some ideas for day two: witness a stunning natural landmark at Manjufukashi, buy something for everyone on your list at A-FACTORY, admire the striking features of Nebuta Museum Wa Rasse, then see the interesting displays at Seikan Ferry Memorial Ship Hakkodamaru, then admire the landmark architecture of Aomori Prefecture Tourist Centerl ASPAM, and finally snap pictures at Aomori Bay Bridge.

For traveler tips, photos, other places to visit, and tourist information, use the Aomori trip itinerary maker site.

Take a train from Sendai to Aomori in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or fly. Plan for slightly colder temperatures traveling from Sendai in January, with highs in Aomori at -1°C and lows at -5°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 7th (Fri) so you can fly to Sapporo.

Things to do in Aomori

Museums · Parks · Shopping · Winter Sports

Sapporo

— 6 nights

CIty of Ramen

A modern, bustling city known for its beer brewery, Sapporo attracts millions of visitors with its Snow Festival, during which elaborate ice and snow sculptures are exhibited all over town.
You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Sapporo Teine and Rusutsu Resort Ski. Explore Sapporo's surroundings by going to Niseko Hanazono Resort (in Kutchan-cho) and Otaru Canal (in Otaru). There's lots more to do: don't miss a visit to Sapporo JR Tower Observatory T38, take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Mt. Teine, visit Susukino, and steep yourself in history at Hokkaido Jingu.

For photos, more things to do, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read Sapporo online trip itinerary builder.

Traveling by flight from Aomori to Sapporo takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or drive. Expect a daytime high around -3°C in January, and nighttime lows around -6°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 13th (Thu) early enough to catch the flight to Tokyo.

Things to do in Sapporo

Parks · Winter Sports · Outdoors · Historic Sites

Side Trips

Tokyo

— 7 nights
Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Sky Garden and Mitsubishi Ichigokan Museum. Get out of town with these interesting Tokyo side-trips: Narita (Naritasan Omote Sando & Narita International Airport Terminal 1), Katori Jingu Shrine (in Katori) and Kashima Jingu (in Kashima). See some other sides of Tokyo: admire the natural beauty at Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo Garden, examine the collection at Nissan Crossing, take in the spiritual surroundings of Musashi Ichinomiya Hikawa Shrine, and make a trip to Kappabashi Street (Kappabashi Dogugai).

To find more things to do, traveler tips, other places to visit, and other tourist information, go to the Tokyo trip itinerary planner.

Getting from Sapporo to Tokyo by flight takes about 3 hours. Other options: take a train; or drive. While traveling from Sapporo, expect much hotter days and somewhat warmer nights in Tokyo, ranging from highs of 11°C to lows of 1°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 20th (Thu) so you can catch the train to Nagoya.

Things to do in Tokyo

Historic Sites · Museums · Parks · Neighborhoods

Side Trips

Nagoya

— 2 nights
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 21st (Fri), get curious at Nagoya City Science Museum, then admire nature's wide array of creatures at Port of Nagoya Public Aquarium, then don't miss a visit to Yokiso, and finally explore the world behind art at The Yamazaki Mazak Museum of Art. On the 22nd (Sat), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: examine the collection at Toyota Commemorative Museum of Industry and Technology, look for all kinds of wild species at Cherry Trees along the Gojo River bank, step into the grandiose world of Nagoya Castle, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Atsuta Jingu Shrine, then make a trip to Osu Shopping Street, and finally enjoy breathtaking views from Nagoya TV Tower.

For reviews, more things to do, traveler tips, and more tourist information, go to the Nagoya vacation planner.

You can take a train from Tokyo to Nagoya in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or drive. When traveling from Tokyo in January, plan for slightly colder days in Nagoya, with highs around 7°C, while nights are about the same with lows around 1°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 22nd (Sat) early enough to catch the train to Kyoto.

Things to do in Nagoya

Parks · Museums · Zoos & Aquariums · Historic Sites

Side Trip

Kyoto

— 3 nights
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.
Start off your visit on the 23rd (Sun): contemplate the long history of Kiyomizu-dera Temple, then don't miss a visit to Sannenzaka Ninenzaka, and then wander the streets of Gion. On the 24th (Mon), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: take in the spiritual surroundings of Kyoto Ebisu Shrine, take in the spiritual surroundings of Rokuharamitsuji Temple, then see the interesting displays at Kyoto Railway Museum, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Kamigamo Shrine, and finally take in the spiritual surroundings of Shimogamo Jinja.

To find ratings, more things to do, reviews, and tourist information, refer to the Kyoto journey builder website.

Traveling by train from Nagoya to Kyoto takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or drive; or take a bus. In January in Kyoto, expect temperatures between 10°C during the day and 1°C at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 25th (Tue) so you can catch the train to Osaka.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites · Neighborhoods · Museums

Osaka

— 2 nights
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 25th (Tue): see the interesting displays at Osaka Shiritsu Toyo Toji Museum, take in panoramic vistas at Tsutenkaku, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Imamiya Ebisu Shrine, shop like a local with Minami (Namba), then make a trip to The Symphony Hall, and finally get a taste of the local shopping with Hankyu Umeda Honten. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: take in the spiritual surroundings of Hiraoka Shrine, admire the landmark architecture of Ishikiri Tsurugiya Shrine, then take a stroll through Shinsaibashi-suji Shopping Street, and finally take some stellar pictures from Senri Riverbank.

To find where to stay, reviews, more things to do, and tourist information, go to the Osaka itinerary planner.

You can drive from Kyoto to Osaka in 1.5 hours. Other options are to take a train; or drive; or take a bus. In January, daily temperatures in Osaka can reach 10°C, while at night they dip to 1°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 27th (Thu) to allow enough time to drive to Koya-cho.

Things to do in Osaka

Shopping · Historic Sites · Neighborhoods · Museums

Side Trips

Koya-cho

— 2 nights
Kick off your visit on the 27th (Thu): pick up some local products at Kannonyama Fruits Garden, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Shipporyuji Temple, then don't miss a visit to Sanko no Matsu, then admire the striking features of Koyasan Kondomae, and finally contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Rokkaku Kyozo. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: explore the different monuments and memorials at Koyasan Okunoin, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Torodo Temple, take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Mt. Koya, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Jokiin, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Kongobu-ji Temple, and finally take in the spiritual surroundings of Ichijo-in Temple.

Ask Inspirock to suggest an itinerary and make planning a trip to Koya-cho fast, fun, and easy.

You can drive from Osaka to Koya-cho in 2 hours. Another option is to take a train. In January, plan for daily highs up to 10°C, and evening lows to 4°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 29th (Sat) so you can go by car to Nara.

Things to do in Koya-cho

Historic Sites · Parks · Nature · Shopping

Side Trips

Nara

— 2 nights

Ancient City

The country's first established capital, Nara houses some of the most storied buildings and natural attractions in Japan, with eight World Heritage Sites in total.
Start off your visit on the 29th (Sat): take in the awesome beauty at Mt. Wakakusa, pause for some photo ops at Todai-ji Temple, then admire the striking features of Nara National Museum, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Nigatsu-do Temple, and finally identify plant and animal life at Nara Park. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 30th (Sun): contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Toshodai-ji Temple, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Isonokami Jingu, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Omiwa Shrine, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Kashihara Jingu, and finally contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Kumedera.

For other places to visit, traveler tips, ratings, and other tourist information, read Nara travel planner.

You can drive from Koya-cho to Nara in 2 hours. Other options are to take a train; or take a train. In January in Nara, expect temperatures between 9°C during the day and 3°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 31st (Mon) to allow enough time to drive to Osaka.

Things to do in Nara

Historic Sites · Parks · Wildlife · Museums

Side Trips

Osaka

— 2 nights
On the 31st (Mon), contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Shijonawate Shrine, admire the striking features of Ishikiri Tsurugiya Shrine, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Hiraoka Shrine, enjoy breathtaking views from Harukas 300 Observation Deck, then admire the landmark architecture of Tsutenkaku, and finally contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Imamiya Ebisu Shrine. Keep things going the next day: see the interesting displays at Osaka Shiritsu Toyo Toji Museum, don't miss a visit to The Symphony Hall, wander the streets of Shinsaibashi-suji Shopping Street, then wander the streets of Minami (Namba), and finally get a taste of the local shopping with Hankyu Umeda Honten.

To find where to stay, ratings, more things to do, and other tourist information, use the Osaka trip itinerary builder website.

You can drive from Nara to Osaka in an hour. Alternatively, you can take a train. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 2nd (Wed) so you can go by car to Kobe.

Things to do in Osaka

Shopping · Historic Sites · Neighborhoods · Museums

Side Trips

Kobe

— 2 nights
Walkable, small, and aesthetically charming, Kobe has served as Japan's first and premier international trading outpost since opening to trade with China in the mid-19th century.
Kick off your visit on the 2nd (Wed): contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Ikuta Shrine, take a stroll through Kitano Ijinkan-gai, then indulge in Japan's hot spring tradition at some of the top local onsens, then observe the fascinating underwater world at Suma Aqualife Park Kobe, and finally don't miss a visit to Sannomiya Center Gai Shopping Street. Keep things going the next day: get engrossed in the history at Kobe City Museum (Kobe Shiritsu Hakubutsukan), wander the streets of Nankinmachi (Kobe Chinatown), enjoy breathtaking views from Kobe Port Tower, then examine the collection at Kawasaki Good Times World, then get a taste of the local shopping with Kobe Harborland, and finally enjoy breathtaking views from Kobe City Hall (Observation Deck).

For traveler tips, maps, more things to do, and other tourist information, you can read our Kobe trip planner.

Drive from Osaka to Kobe in an hour. Alternatively, you can take a train; or take a bus. In February, plan for daily highs up to 10°C, and evening lows to 3°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 4th (Fri) to allow time to take a train to Hiroshima.

Things to do in Kobe

Neighborhoods · Museums · Shopping · Parks

Hiroshima

— 2 nights

City of Peace

Grapple with history and appreciate modernity in Hiroshima, a city known around the world for its tragic past and inspiring rebirth.
Kick off your visit on the 4th (Fri): step into the grandiose world of Hiroshima Castle, see the interesting displays at JMSDF Kure Museum, then contemplate the long history of Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima, then appreciate the history behind Memorial Tower to the Mobilized Students, and finally steep yourself in history at Atomic Bomb Dome. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: steep yourself in history at Itsukushima Shrine, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Senjokaku, and then delve into the lush surroundings at Misen Wild Woods.

To see traveler tips, more things to do, where to stay, and more tourist information, use the Hiroshima visit planner.

Traveling by train from Kobe to Hiroshima takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or drive; or do a combination of flight and ferry. In February in Hiroshima, expect temperatures between 11°C during the day and 3°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 6th (Sun) to allow enough time to take a train to Nagasaki.

Things to do in Hiroshima

Historic Sites · Museums · Parks · Nature

Side Trips

Nagasaki

— 2 nights

City of Peace

The hilly port city of Nagasaki has become known internationally as one of the two Japanese cities to be destroyed by an atomic bomb towards the close of World War II. This history, of course, remains important to the city, its inhabitants, and to the wider world, and should not be forgotten.
Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Nagasaki Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims and Glover Sky Road. Go for a jaunt from Nagasaki to Sasebo to see Huis Ten Bosch about 1h 15 min away. There's lots more to do: contemplate the long history of Suwa Shrine, walk around Nabekanmuriyama Park, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Kofukuji Temple, and explore the world behind art at Nagasaki Prefectural Art Museum.

To see traveler tips, more things to do, other places to visit, and tourist information, read Nagasaki tour itinerary tool.

Traveling by train from Hiroshima to Nagasaki takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or do a combination of train and bus; or drive. In February, daily temperatures in Nagasaki can reach 12°C, while at night they dip to 5°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 8th (Tue) to allow time to fly to Tokyo.

Things to do in Nagasaki

Theme Parks · Historic Sites · Museums · Parks

Side Trip

Tokyo

— 2 nights
On the 9th (Wed), take in the spiritual surroundings of Sengaku-ji Temple, get in on the family fun at Gundam Front Tokyo, then examine the collection at JP Tower Museum Intermediatheque, then relax and rejuvenate at Arona Spa, and finally let little ones run wild at Hanegi Park. Here are some ideas for day two: ponder the world of politics at Akasaka Palace (State Guesthouse), take in nature's colorful creations at Koishikawa Korakuen Garden, take in the spiritual surroundings of Kyu Kaneiji Five-Storied Pagoda, then steep yourself in history at Toshogu Shrine, and finally take a stroll through Yanaka District.

To find photos, other places to visit, and tourist information, read Tokyo trip planning website.

You can fly from Nagasaki to Tokyo in 3.5 hours. Other options are to take a train; or drive. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 10th (Thu) early enough to fly back home.

Things to do in Tokyo

Historic Sites · Parks · Spas · Museums

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.