17 days in Japan Itinerary

17 days in Japan Itinerary

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Route & dates

17 days in Japan Itinerary

Start: Athens
Fly:  18​h 15​min
1
Tokyo
— 1 night
train:  2​h 45​min
2
Kyoto
— 3 nights
train:  45​min
3
Nara
— 1 day
Drive:  1​h 15​min
4
Kobe
— 1 night
train:  3​h 15​min
5
Kanazawa
— 1 night
train:  1​h 15​min
6
Nagano
— 2 nights
train:  1​h 30​min
7
Tokyo
— 3 nights
train:  1​h 45​min
8
Hakone-machi
— 2 nights
9
Narita
— 1 night
train + Fly:  19​h
End: Athens

1
night
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.
Kick off your visit on the 23rd (Sat): take a stroll through Kagurazaka.

To see ratings, maps, other places to visit, and more tourist information, use the Tokyo road trip website .

Athens, Greece to Tokyo is an approximately 18.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of bus and flight; or do a combination of train and flight. The time zone difference when traveling from Athens to Tokyo is 7 hours. Plan for little chillier temperatures traveling from Athens in November, with highs in Tokyo at 19°C and lows at 11°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 24th (Sun) so you can travel to Kyoto.

Things to do in Tokyo

Neighborhoods
Find places to stay Nov 23 — 24:
Highlights from your plan
Kagurazaka ©
Kagurazaka

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.
Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Ninna-ji Temple and Shimogamo Jinja. Kiyomizu-dera Temple and Sanzen-in Temple will appeal to history buffs. Go for a jaunt from Kyoto to Uji to see Obakusan Manpuku - ji Temple about 34 minutes away. There's much more to do: take in the spiritual surroundings of Shoren-in Temple (Shoren-in Monzeki), contemplate the long history of Kitano Tenmangu Shrine, get great views at Mt. Kurama, and step into the grandiose world of Nijo Castle.

To see more things to do, other places to visit, reviews, and other tourist information, read Kyoto journey builder site .

Take a train from Tokyo to Kyoto in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or drive. In November in Kyoto, expect temperatures between 19°C during the day and 10°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 27th (Wed) early enough to take a train to Nara.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Neighborhoods Parks

Side Trip

Obakusan Manpuku - ji Temple
Find places to stay Nov 24 — 27:
Highlights from your plan
Kitano Tenmangu Shrine ©
Kitano Tenmangu Shrine
Kiyomizu-dera Temple ©
Kiyomizu-dera Temple
Ninna-ji Temple ©
Ninna-ji Temple

1
day
Nara

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 27th (Wed), don't miss a visit to Nara National Museum, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Nigatsu-do Temple, stroll around Nara Park, then take a stroll through Sanjodori Street, and finally contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Toshodaiji Temple.

For traveler tips, ratings, where to stay, and other tourist information, read Nara trip itinerary planning website .

You can take a train from Kyoto to Nara in an hour. Other options are to drive; or do a combination of subway and train. In November in Nara, expect temperatures between 19°C during the day and 13°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 27th (Wed) early enough to drive to Kobe.

Things to do in Nara

Parks Wildlife Historic Sites
Find places to stay Nov 27 — 28:
Highlights from your plan
Toshodai-ji Temple ©
Toshodai-ji Temple
Nigatsu-do Temple ©
Nigatsu-do Temple
Nara Park ©
Nara Park

1
night
Kobe

Kobe ©
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.
On the 27th (Wed), take in the spiritual surroundings of Kiyoshikojin Seichoji and then take a stroll through Nankinmachi (Kobe Chinatown).

To find more things to do, maps, traveler tips, and more tourist information, go to the Kobe holiday planner .

Traveling by car from Nara to Kobe takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or take a train. In November in Kobe, expect temperatures between 19°C during the day and 13°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 28th (Thu) to allow time to take a train to Kanazawa.

Things to do in Kobe

Historic Sites Shopping Neighborhoods

Side Trips

Nishinomiya Shrine, Kakurinji Temple, Kiyoshikojin Seichoji
Find places to stay Nov 27 — 28:
Highlights from your plan
Kiyoshikojin Seichoji ©
Kiyoshikojin Seichoji
Nishinomiya Shrine ©
Nishinomiya Shrine
Kobe Harborland ©
Kobe Harborland

1
night
Kanazawa

Kanazawa ©
An old castle town largely unspoiled during World War II, Kanazawa features well-preserved architecture spread across a range of districts.
On the 29th (Fri), take in the spiritual surroundings of Shirayama Hime Shrine, explore the historical opulence of Kanazawa Castle, buy something for everyone on your list at Kanazawa Hyakubangai Shopping Center, then examine the collection at Kanazawa Phonograph Museum, then stop by Sakuda Honten, and finally wander the streets of Higashichaya Old Town.

For ratings, more things to do, and other tourist information, read Kanazawa trip planner.

You can take a train from Kobe to Kanazawa in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of train and flight. Plan for little chillier nights when traveling from Kobe in November since evenings lows in Kanazawa dip to 8°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 29th (Fri) to allow time to take a train to Nagano.

Things to do in Kanazawa

Historic Sites Shopping Museums

Side Trip

Shirayama Hime Shrine
Find places to stay Nov 28 — 29:
Highlights from your plan
Kanazawa Castle ©
Kanazawa Castle
Higashichaya Old Town ©
Higashichaya Old Town
Shirayama Hime Shrine ©
Shirayama Hime Shrine

2
nights
Nagano

Nagano ©
Near the confluence of the Chikuma and Sai rivers, Nagano combines historic sites with nearby forested alps dotted with shrines.
Kick off your visit on the 29th (Fri): take in the history at Old Battlefield of Kawanakajima. Keep things going the next day: steep yourself in history at Matsushiro, steep yourself in history at Sanada House, fly down the slopes at Myoko Kogen, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Togakushi Shrine Okusha, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Zenko-ji Temple, and finally take in the spiritual surroundings of Zenkoji Sesonin Shakado Temple.

To see ratings, more things to do, traveler tips, and more tourist information, refer to the Nagano road trip planning site .

Getting from Kanazawa to Nagano by train takes about 1.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of bus and train; or drive. When traveling from Kanazawa in November, plan for little chillier days in Nagano, with highs around 14°C, while nights are about the same with lows around 6°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 1st (Sun) to allow time to take a train to Tokyo.

Things to do in Nagano

Parks Nature Historic Sites

Side Trips

Ganshoin Temple, Myoko Kogen
Find places to stay Nov 29 — Dec 1:
Highlights from your plan
Togakushi Shrine Okusha ©
Togakushi Shrine Okusha
Myoko Kogen ©
Myoko Kogen
Zenko-ji Temple ©
Zenko-ji Temple

3
nights
Tokyo

Tokyo ©
On the 1st (Sun), steep yourself in history at Hie Jinjya. Here are some ideas for day two: take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Mt. Takao, take in the spiritual surroundings of Asakusa Fujiasama Shrine, take in the spiritual surroundings of Asakusa Shrine, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Sensō-ji, then get a taste of the local shopping with Kitchen Town (Kappabashi), and finally take a stroll through Yanaka.

For where to stay, reviews, maps, and more tourist information, you can read our Tokyo trip maker website .

Getting from Nagano to Tokyo by train takes about 1.5 hours. Other options: drive; or take a bus. In December, Tokyo is somewhat warmer than Nagano - with highs of 14°C and lows of 4°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 4th (Wed) so you can travel to Hakone-machi.

Things to do in Tokyo

Neighborhoods Parks Historic Sites

Side Trips

Kiyose Sunflower Farm, Mt. Takao
Find places to stay Dec 1 — 4:
Highlights from your plan
Asakusa Shrine ©
Asakusa Shrine
Nezu Shrine ©
Nezu Shrine
Senso-ji Temple ©
Senso-ji Temple

2
nights
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.
Discover out-of-the-way places like Nature & Wildlife Tours and Izusan Jinja Shrine. For shopping fun, head to Gotemba Premium Outlets or Chayahonjin Hotoriya. Get out of town with these interesting Hakone-machi side-trips: Oyama Afuri Shrine (in Isehara), Kiunkaku (in Atami) and Gempeigawa River (in Mishima). The adventure continues: contemplate the long history of Hakone Shrine / Kuzuryu Shrine Singu, explore the activities along Lake Ashi (Ashinoko), see the interesting displays at Lalique Museum Hakone, and explore the world behind art at Okada Museum of Art.

For maps, photos, traveler tips, and more tourist information, refer to the Hakone-machi online road trip planner .

You can take a train from Tokyo to Hakone-machi in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. When traveling from Tokyo in December, plan for a bit cooler days in Hakone-machi, with highs around 8°C, while nights are about the same with lows around 5°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 6th (Fri) so you can go by car to Fujiyoshida.

Things to do in Hakone-machi

Historic Sites Museums Parks

Side Trips

Atami, Satta-toge Pass, Gempeigawa River, Gotemba Premium Outlets, Oyama Afuri Shrine
Find places to stay Dec 4 — 6:
Highlights from your plan
Choanji Temple ©
Choanji Temple
Hakone Shrine / Kuzuryu Shrine Singu ©
Kiunkaku ©
Kiunkaku

1
night
Narita

Narita ©
Pilgrims and aviators come to Narita, a town known during the Edo period for its temple, and now known primarily for its airport.
To find ratings, more things to do, traveler tips, and more tourist information, go to the Narita tour itinerary builder tool .

You can drive from Hakone-machi to Narita in 2.5 hours. Other options are to take a train; or take a bus. Traveling from Hakone-machi in December, expect nights in Narita to be a bit cooler, around 1°C, while days are a bit warmer, around 13°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 7th (Sat) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Narita

Historic Sites Shopping
Find places to stay Dec 6 — 7:
Highlights from your plan
Naritasan Shinsho-ji Temple ©
Naritasan Shinsho-ji Temple
Naritasan Omote Sando ©
Naritasan Omote Sando

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