18 days in Japan Itinerary

18 days in Japan Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Japan trip planner

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Route & dates

18 days in Japan Itinerary

Start: Osaka
1
Osaka
— 2 nights
+2
train + bus + ferry:  3​h 15​min
2
Naoshima-cho
— 1 day
Drive:  1​h 30​min
3
Okayama
— 2 nights
train:  1​h
4
Kyoto
— 4 nights
train:  45​min
5
Nara
— 1 day
Drive:  4​h 15​min
6
Hakone-machi
— 5 nights
Drive:  3​h 15​min
7
Nikko
— Few hours
train:  1​h 45​min
8
Tokyo
— 4 nights
End: Tokyo

2
nights
Osaka

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.
Start off your visit on the 27th (Fri): take in the spiritual surroundings of Yasui Shrine, take in nature's colorful creations at Sakuya Konohanakan, and then see the interesting displays at Modern Transportation Museum. Here are some ideas for day two: take in the architecture and atmosphere at Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Katsuo-ji Temple, then see the interesting displays at National Museum of Ethnology, and finally contemplate the long history of Tekijuku.

To see ratings, photos, other places to visit, and other tourist information, go to the Osaka day trip website .

If you are flying in from Israel, the closest major airports are Osaka International Airport, Kansai International Airport and Chubu Centrair International Airport. In September, daily temperatures in Osaka can reach 32°C, while at night they dip to 24°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 29th (Sun) early enough to travel to Naoshima-cho.

Things to do in Osaka

Historic Sites Parks Wildlife

Side Trips

National Museum of Ethnology, Katsuo-ji Temple
Find places to stay Sep 27 — 29:
Highlights from your plan
Katsuo-ji Temple ©
Katsuo-ji Temple
Yasui Shrine ©
Yasui Shrine
Tekijuku ©
Tekijuku

1
day
Naoshima-cho

Naoshima-cho ©
On a vacation in Naoshima-cho, a charming island town in the Seto Inland Sea, you can discover its numerous contemporary art museums, sculptures, installations, and galleries.
On the 29th (Sun), take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Mt. Ojigadake, then explore the activities along Shibukawa Coast, then see the interesting displays at 007 Museum, and finally contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Hachiman Shrine.

To see where to stay, ratings, more things to do, and tourist information, use the Naoshima-cho trip planner .

Getting from Osaka to Naoshima-cho by combination of train, bus, and ferry takes about 3.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of bus and ferry. In September, daytime highs in Naoshima-cho are 30°C, while nighttime lows are 22°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 29th (Sun) to allow time to drive to Okayama.

Things to do in Naoshima-cho

Parks Nature Beaches

Side Trip

Tamano
Find places to stay Sep 29 — 30:
Highlights from your plan
007 Museum ©
007 Museum

2
nights
Okayama

Okayama ©
A major transit hub in western Japan, Okayama provides a convenient mid-point between Kyoto, Osaka, and Hiroshima.
On the 30th (Mon), contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Ryusen-ji Temple, explore the historical opulence of Kinojo Castle, then steep yourself in history at Kinojo Iwaya, then delve into the lush surroundings at Tatsunokuchi Green Shower Forest, and finally explore the world behind art at Yumeji Art Museum (Yumeji-Kyodo Bijutsukan). On the 1st (Tue), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: get outside with Okayama Prefectural Multipurpose Grounds and then enjoy the sand and surf at Sami Beach.

To see photos, other places to visit, where to stay, and tourist information, read our Okayama sightseeing planning app .

Drive from Naoshima-cho to Okayama in 1.5 hours. In September, daytime highs in Okayama are 30°C, while nighttime lows are 21°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 1st (Tue) to allow time to take a train to Kyoto.

Things to do in Okayama

Outdoors Parks Historic Sites

Side Trips

Soja, Sami Beach
Find places to stay Sep 29 — Oct 1:
Highlights from your plan
Kinojo Castle ©
Kinojo Castle

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.
Popular historic sites such as Jojakkoji Temple and Ishiyamadera Temple are in your itinerary. Get a sense of the local culture at Otagi Nenbutsu-ji Temple and Mimurotoji Temple. Change things up with a short trip to Obakusan Manpuku - ji Temple in Uji (about 34 minutes away). And it doesn't end there: steep yourself in history at Honen-in, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Kotoin, relax and rejuvenate at some of the best spas, and don't miss a visit to Yasakanoto.

To find more things to do, other places to visit, reviews, and more tourist information, use the Kyoto visit planner .

Take a train from Okayama to Kyoto in an hour. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In October, daily temperatures in Kyoto can reach 27°C, while at night they dip to 18°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 5th (Sat) so you can catch the train to Nara.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Parks Nature

Side Trips

Uji, Ishiyamadera Temple
Find places to stay Oct 1 — 5:
Highlights from your plan
Hosenin ©
Hosenin
Obakusan Manpuku - ji Temple ©
Obakusan Manpuku - ji Temple
Shinnyodo Temple ©
Shinnyodo 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 5th (Sat), steep yourself in history at Todaiji Keidaicho, don't miss a visit to Daibutsuden, look for all kinds of wild species at Rokuen, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Joruri Temple, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Akishinodera Temple, and finally contemplate the long history of Nishinokyo District.

For where to stay, other places to visit, maps, and tourist information, read Nara trip planner .

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 October in Nara, expect temperatures between 27°C during the day and 20°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 5th (Sat) to allow enough time to drive to Hakone-machi.

Things to do in Nara

Historic Sites Parks Wildlife

Side Trip

Joruri Temple
Find places to stay Oct 5 — 6:
Highlights from your plan
Akishinodera Temple ©
Akishinodera Temple
Rokuen ©
Rokuen

5
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.
Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Kiunkaku and Fujisan Hongu Sengen Taisha Shrine. Get some cultural insight at Hakone Museum of Art and Oyama Afuri Shrine. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Hakone-machi: Gempeigawa River (in Mishima) and Shimoda (Former Sawamura Residence, Kisami Ohama Beach, & more). There's still lots to do: see the interesting displays at Lalique Museum Hakone, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Hakone Moto Tsumiya Shrine, take in nature's colorful creations at Hakone Shisseikaen, and explore the galleries of Hakone Sekisho and Hakone Sekisho Museum.

To see photos, maps, where to stay, and other tourist information, refer to the Hakone-machi online attractions planner .

Drive from Nara to Hakone-machi in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or do a combination of train and flight. Traveling from Nara in October, things will get a bit cooler in Hakone-machi: highs are around 19°C and lows about 17°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 10th (Thu) to allow enough time to drive to Nikko.

Things to do in Hakone-machi

Parks Museums Historic Sites

Side Trips

Shimoda, Kiunkaku, Gempeigawa River, Fujisan Hongu Sengen Taisha Shrine, Oyama Afuri Shrine
Find places to stay Oct 5 — 10:
Highlights from your plan
Hakone Stone‐paved Road ©
Hakone Stone‐paved Road
Kiunkaku ©
Kiunkaku
Oyama Afuri Shrine ©
Oyama Afuri Shrine

few
hours
Nikko

Nikko
A gateway to a sprawling and diverse national park, a center of Shinto spiritualism and place of Buddhist worship, an emblem of the riches and dominance of the Tokugawa shogunate: Nikko means many things to many people.
For other places to visit, more things to do, where to stay, and other tourist information, read our Nikko trip planner .

Traveling by car from Hakone-machi to Nikko takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or take a train. Expect a daytime high around 22°C in October, and nighttime lows around 19°C. On the 10th (Thu), you'll travel to Tokyo.

Things to do in Nikko

Parks Historic Sites Museums
Find places to stay Oct 10 — 11:

4
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.
Get some historical perspective at Hozomon and Kawagoe Hikawa Shrine. Step out of the city life by going to Futtsu Beach and Morito Beach. Explore Tokyo's surroundings by going to Historic Old Town area in Sawara, Katori (in Katori), Koajiro Forest (in Miura) and Erin-ji Temple (in Koshu). The adventure continues: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Tokyo Camii & Turkish Culture Center, don't miss a visit to Kyu Iwasakitei Teien, admire the masterpieces at Suntory Museum of Art, and contemplate the long history of Holy Resurrection Cathedral.

Inspirock's itinerary builder makes planning a Tokyo trip simple and quick.

Take a train from Nikko to Tokyo in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In October, plan for daily highs up to 26°C, and evening lows to 18°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 14th (Mon) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Tokyo

Historic Sites Parks Beaches

Side Trips

Koajiro Forest, Kawagoe Hikawa Shrine, Morito Beach, Historic Old Town area in Sawara, Katori, Erin-ji Temple
Find places to stay Oct 10 — 14:
Highlights from your plan
Kawagoe Hikawa Shrine ©
Kawagoe Hikawa Shrine
Hozomon ©
Hozomon
Tokyo Camii & Turkish Culture Center ©

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