12 days in Japan Itinerary

12 days in Japan Itinerary

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Route & dates

12 days in Japan Itinerary

Start: Dallas
Fly:  16​h 30​min
1
Tokyo
— 3 nights
train:  1​h 45​min
2
Hakone-machi
— 1 night
train:  5​h
3
Hiroshima
— 2 nights
train:  1​h
4
Himeji
— 1 night
train:  45​min
5
Kyoto
— 3 nights
train + Fly:  18​h 30​min
End: Dallas

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.
Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Tokyo National Museum and Sensō-ji. Let the collections at Edo-Tokyo Museum and Ghibli Museum Mitaka capture your imagination. There's much more to do: take a stroll through Odaiba, get a taste of the local shopping with Ginza, admire the landmark architecture of Imperial Palace, and don't miss a visit to Tokyo Tower.

To find photos, more things to do, ratings, and more tourist information, read our Tokyo travel route website .

Dallas, USA to Tokyo is an approximately 16.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of car and flight; or do a combination of bus and flight. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 15 hours traveling from Dallas to Tokyo. When traveling from Dallas in October, plan for slightly colder days in Tokyo, with highs around 72°F, while nights are about the same with lows around 60°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 12th (Sat) so you can travel to Hakone-machi.

Things to do in Tokyo

Neighborhoods Museums Historic Sites

Side Trip

Ghibli Museum Mitaka
Find places to stay Oct 9 — 12:
Highlights from your plan
Odaiba ©
Odaiba
Sensō-ji ©
Sensō-ji
Tokyo National Museum ©
Tokyo National Museum

1
night
Hakone-machi

Hakone-machi ©
Sitting at the foot of Mount Fuji, Hakone-machi has become a popular retreat from Tokyo for locals and tourists alike.
Start off your visit on the 13th (Sun): explore the world behind art at The Hakone Open-Air Museum, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Hakone Shrine / Kuzuryu Shrine Singu, then explore the world behind art at Narukawa Art Museum, and finally contemplate the long history of Hakone Sekisho and Hakone Sekisho Museum.

To see other places to visit, traveler tips, maps, and more tourist information, read Hakone-machi online holiday maker .

Getting from Tokyo to Hakone-machi by train takes about 2 hours. Other options: drive; or take a bus. When traveling from Tokyo in October, plan for slightly colder days in Hakone-machi, with highs around 62°F, while nights are about the same with lows around 59°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 13th (Sun) so you can travel to Hiroshima.

Things to do in Hakone-machi

Museums Historic Sites
Find places to stay Oct 12 — 13:
Highlights from your plan
The Hakone Open-Air Museum ©
The Hakone Open-Air Museum
Narukawa Art Museum ©
Narukawa Art Museum

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 14th (Mon), examine the collection at Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, then take an in-depth tour of Hiroshima National Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims, and then steep yourself in history at Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 15th (Tue): head off the coast to Miyajima, then contemplate the long history of Itsukushima Shrine Torii, and then steep yourself in history at Itsukushima Shrine.

To find where to stay, maps, traveler tips, and other tourist information, use the Hiroshima road trip planning site .

You can take a train from Hakone-machi to Hiroshima in 5 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or drive. Expect a bit warmer weather when traveling from Hakone-machi in October: highs in Hiroshima hover around 73°F, while lows dip to 61°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 15th (Tue) early enough to catch the train to Himeji.

Things to do in Hiroshima

Historic Sites Museums Parks

Side Trip

Hatsukaichi
Find places to stay Oct 13 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum ©
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
Itsukushima Shrine ©
Itsukushima Shrine
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park ©
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

1
night
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.
On the 16th (Wed), contemplate the long history of Yoneda Taishiji Temple, then contemplate the long history of Himeji Castle, then contemplate the long history of Nishi no Maru, and finally admire the natural beauty at Koko-en Garden.

To find photos, maps, and tourist information, you can read our Himeji trip planning app .

You can take a train from Hiroshima to Himeji in an hour. Other options are to drive; or do a combination of bus and train. In October, daily temperatures in Himeji can reach 72°F, while at night they dip to 64°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 16th (Wed) to allow time to take a train to Kyoto.

Things to do in Himeji

Historic Sites Parks

Side Trip

Yoneda Taishiji Temple
Find places to stay Oct 15 — 16:
Highlights from your plan
Himeji Castle ©
Himeji Castle
Nishi no Maru ©
Nishi no Maru
Koko-en Garden ©
Koko-en Garden

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.
Appreciate the collections at Kyoto Museum of Traditional Crafts Fureaikan and Todaiji Temple Cultural Center. Get a sense of the local culture at Gion and Kinkaku-ji. Step out of Kyoto to go to Nara and see Nara Park, which is approximately 1h 10 min away. The adventure continues: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Kiyomizu-dera Temple, contemplate the long history of Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine, and explore the historical opulence of Nijo Castle.

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

You can take a train from Himeji to Kyoto in an hour. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Expect a daytime high around 74°F in October, and nighttime lows around 60°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 19th (Sat) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Neighborhoods Parks

Side Trip

Nara
Find places to stay Oct 16 — 19:
Highlights from your plan
Kinkaku-ji ©
Kinkaku-ji
Kiyomizu-dera Temple ©
Kiyomizu-dera Temple
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine ©
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine

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