17 days in Japan, Beijing & Shanghai Itinerary

17 days in Japan, Beijing & Shanghai Itinerary

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Route & dates

17 days in Japan, Beijing & Shanghai Itinerary

Start: Mexico City, Mexico
Fly:  15​h 30​min
1
Tokyo, Japan
— 3 nights
train:  2​h 45​min
2
Kyoto, Japan
— 2 nights
train:  45​min
3
Nara, Japan
— 1 night
train:  30​min
4
Osaka, Japan
— 1 night
Fly:  6​h 30​min
5
Beijing, China
— 3 nights
Fly:  4​h 15​min
6
Shanghai, China
— 4 nights
Fly:  28​h
End: Mexico City, Mexico

3
nights
Tokyo, Japan

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 Akihabara. You'll discover tucked-away gems like Ueno and Samurai Museum. Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Odaiba and Asakusa. The adventure continues: get a taste of the local shopping with Ginza, make a trip to Meiji Jingu Shrine, view the masterpieces at Tokyo Little House, and take a stroll through Harajuku Takeshita-dori.

To see other places to visit and more tourist information, use the Tokyo travel website .

Mexico City, Mexico to Tokyo is an approximately 15.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of bus and flight. The time zone difference moving from Central Standard Time (CST) to Japan Standard Time (JST) is 15 hours. Plan for somewhat warmer nights when traveling from Mexico City in June since evenings lows in Tokyo dip to 22°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 3rd (Wed) so you can travel to Kyoto.

Things to do in Tokyo

Neighborhoods Shopping Parks
Find places to stay Jun 30 — Jul 3:
Highlights from your plan
Odaiba ©
Odaiba
Nezu Shrine ©
Nezu Shrine
Ueno ©
Ueno

2
nights
Kyoto, Japan

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.
To see other places to visit, where to stay, and other tourist information, refer to the Kyoto journey planning site .

Traveling by train from Tokyo to Kyoto takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or drive. Expect a daytime high around 37°C in July, and nighttime lows around 28°C. On the 5th (Fri), you'll have the morning to explore before heading off to Nara.

Things to do in Kyoto

Nature Parks Historic Sites
Find places to stay Jul 3 — 5:
Highlights from your plan
Kamogawa River ©
Kamogawa River
Mt. Kurama ©
Mt. Kurama
Kinkaku-ji ©
Kinkaku-ji

1
night
Nara, Japan

Nara ©
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.
On the 5th (Fri), contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Toshodai-ji Temple, stop by Naramachi Nakanishi Yosaburo, pause for some photo ops at Todai-ji Temple, then identify plant and animal life at Nara Park, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Nigatsu-do Temple, and finally take in the spiritual surroundings of Hokke-do.

For where to stay, more things to do, traveler tips, and more tourist information, you can read our Nara day trip planning site .

Getting from Kyoto to Nara by train takes about an hour. Other options: drive; or do a combination of subway and train. In July, daytime highs in Nara are 37°C, while nighttime lows are 31°C. You will have some time to spend on the 6th (Sat) before leaving for Osaka.

Things to do in Nara

Historic Sites Wildlife Parks
Find places to stay Jul 5 — 6:
Highlights from your plan
Todai-ji Temple ©
Todai-ji Temple
Toshodai-ji Temple ©
Toshodai-ji Temple
Nigatsu-do Temple ©
Nigatsu-do Temple

1
night
Osaka, Japan

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.
On the 6th (Sat), step into the grandiose world of Osaka Castle, take a stroll through Shinsaibashi-suji Shopping Street, and then get a taste of the local shopping with Dotonbori.

To see ratings, maps, reviews, and tourist information, read Osaka tour planner.

You can take a train from Nara to Osaka in an hour. Alternatively, you can drive. July in Osaka sees daily highs of 37°C and lows of 28°C at night. On the 7th (Sun), you'll have the morning to explore before heading off to Beijing.

Things to do in Osaka

Shopping Neighborhoods Historic Sites
Find places to stay Jul 6 — 7:
Highlights from your plan
Dotonbori ©
Dotonbori
Osaka Castle ©
Osaka Castle
Shinsaibashi-suji Shopping Street ©

3
nights
Beijing, China

Beijing ©
As the political and cultural capital of China, Beijing stands at the heart of Chinese history, buzzing with the energy of its high population density and centuries of importance.
Get some historical perspective at Summer Palace (Yiheyuan) and Temple of Heaven. Get some cultural insight at Back Lakes (Hou Hai) and Yandai Xie Street. The adventure continues: view the masterpieces at 798 Art Zone, savor the flavors at Food & Drink, get engrossed in the history at The Palace Museum, and stop by PAPP'S TEA.

To find other places to visit, maps, where to stay, and tourist information, read our Beijing trip itinerary planning website .

Getting from Osaka to Beijing by flight takes about 7 hours. Other options: do a combination of train and flight; or do a combination of car and ferry. You'll gain 1 hour traveling from Osaka to Beijing due to the time zone difference. Expect a daytime high around 38°C in July, and nighttime lows around 26°C. You will have some time to spend on the 10th (Wed) before leaving for Shanghai.

Things to do in Beijing

Historic Sites Museums Tours
Find places to stay Jul 7 — 10:
Highlights from your plan
Back Lakes (Hou Hai) ©
Back Lakes (Hou Hai)
Summer Palace (Yiheyuan) ©
Summer Palace (Yiheyuan)
The Palace Museum ©
The Palace Museum

4
nights
Shanghai, China

Shanghai ©
With a nickname like the "Pearl of the Orient," it's not surprising Shanghai offers some of the most rewarding attractions and activities in the Far East.
Deepen your sense of the past at sights like The Bund (Wai Tan) and Former French Concession. Explore hidden gems such as Humble Administrator's Garden and Shanghai World Financial Center. And it doesn't end there: buy something for everyone on your list at South Bund Soft Spinning Material Market, let your taste buds guide you at a local gastronomic tour, take in the exciting artwork at Shanghai Propaganda Poster Art Centre, and don't miss a visit to Nanjing Lu (Nanjing Road).

To find reviews, other places to visit, where to stay, and other tourist information, refer to the Shanghai journey maker website .

Traveling by flight from Beijing to Shanghai takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of shuttle and flight; or drive. Expect somewhat warmer evenings in Shanghai when traveling from Beijing in July, with lows around 30°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 14th (Sun) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Shanghai

Shopping Parks Historic Sites

Side Trip

Humble Administrator's Garden
Find places to stay Jul 10 — 14:
Highlights from your plan
Former French Concession ©
Former French Concession
The Bund (Wai Tan) ©
The Bund (Wai Tan)
Humble Administrator's Garden ©
Humble Administrator's Garden

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