16 days in Japan Itinerary

16 days in Japan Itinerary

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Route & dates

16 days in Japan Itinerary

Start: San Jose
Fly:  23​h
1
Tokyo
— 5 nights
train:  2​h 45​min
2
Kyoto
— 4 nights
train:  2​h 30​min
3
Kanazawa
— 4 nights
Fly:  22​h 30​min
End: San Jose

5
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.
Have a day of magic on the 14th (Sat) at Tokyo Disneyland. There's lots more to do: don't miss a visit to Meiji Jingu Shrine, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Sensō-ji, tour the pleasant surroundings at Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden, and explore the world behind art at Tokyo National Museum.

For other places to visit, maps, reviews, and more tourist information, refer to the Tokyo tour itinerary planning website .

San Jose, Costa Rica to Tokyo is an approximately 23-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and train; or do a combination of bus and flight. You'll lose 15 hours traveling from San Jose to Tokyo due to the time zone difference. Traveling from San Jose in December, things will get cooler in Tokyo: highs are around 14°C and lows about 4°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 15th (Sun) so you can travel to Kyoto.

Things to do in Tokyo

Theme Parks Neighborhoods Museums

Side Trip

Tokyo Disneyland
Find places to stay Dec 10 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Owl cafe Akiba Fukurou ©
Owl cafe Akiba Fukurou
Meiji Jingu Shrine ©
Meiji Jingu Shrine
Tokyo Tower ©
Tokyo Tower

4
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.
Change things up with these side-trips from Kyoto: Osaka (Universal Studios Japan & Osaka Castle). There's much more to do: contemplate the long history of Kiyomizu-dera Temple, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine, step into the grandiose world of Nijo Castle, and make a trip to Arashiyama.

To see other places to visit, maps, where to stay, and tourist information, use the Kyoto trip planning website .

You can take a train from Tokyo to Kyoto in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or drive. In December, plan for daily highs up to 13°C, and evening lows to 4°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 19th (Thu) so you can catch the train to Kanazawa.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Theme Parks

Side Trip

Osaka
Find places to stay Dec 15 — 19:
Highlights from your plan
Kiyomizu-dera Temple ©
Kiyomizu-dera Temple
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine ©
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine
Universal Studios Japan ©
Universal Studios Japan

4
nights
Kanazawa

Kanazawa ©
An old castle town largely unspoiled during World War II, Kanazawa features well-preserved architecture spread across a range of districts.
Change things up with these side-trips from Kanazawa: Takayama (Sanmachi Suji, Takayama Jinya, & more) and Shirakawa-mura (The Historic Villages of Shirakawa-go Gassho Style Houses, Shirakawago Gassho Zukuri Minkaen, & more). Next up on the itinerary: walk around Kenrokuen Garden, make a trip to Kanazawa Station, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Ninja Temple, and explore the world behind art at 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa.

For ratings, photos, and other tourist information, use the Kanazawa road trip tool .

You can take a train from Kyoto to Kanazawa in 2.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. In December in Kanazawa, expect temperatures between 11°C during the day and 3°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 23rd (Mon) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Kanazawa

Historic Sites Museums Neighborhoods

Side Trips

Takayama, Shirakawa-mura
Find places to stay Dec 19 — 23:
Highlights from your plan
Kenrokuen Garden
Kenrokuen Garden
Takayama Jinya ©
Takayama Jinya

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