20 days in Japan Itinerary

20 days in Japan Itinerary

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Route & dates

20 days in Japan Itinerary

Start: Johannesburg
Fly:  20​h
1
Tokyo
— 4 nights
train:  1​h 45​min
2
Nikko
— 1 day
Drive:  3​h 30​min
3
Fujikawaguchiko-machi
— 2 nights
Drive:  4​h 15​min
4
Matsumoto
— 3 nights
train:  3​h
5
Kanazawa
— 3 nights
train:  2​h 30​min
6
Kyoto
— 5 nights
train + Fly:  23​h
End: Johannesburg

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.
Akihabara has been added to your itinerary.

To see other places to visit, maps, ratings, and tourist information, read Tokyo tour planner.

Johannesburg, South Africa to Tokyo is an approximately 22-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and train. The time zone changes from South Africa Standard Time (SAST) to Japan Standard Time (JST), which is usually a 7 hour difference. When traveling from Johannesburg in June, plan for somewhat warmer days in Tokyo, with highs around 30°C, while nights are much hotter with lows around 22°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 22nd (Sat) to allow time to take a train to Nikko.

Things to do in Tokyo

Neighborhoods Shopping
Find places to stay Jun 20 — 24:
Highlights from your plan
Ginza ©
Ginza
Akihabara ©
Akihabara
Meiji Jingu Shrine ©
Meiji Jingu Shrine

1
day
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.
On the 24th (Mon), contemplate the long history of Taiyuimbyo Shrine and then take in the spiritual surroundings of Nikko Tosho-gu.

For traveler tips, other places to visit, where to stay, and tourist information, refer to the Nikko trip planner .

Traveling by train from Tokyo to Nikko takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In June in Nikko, expect temperatures between 28°C during the day and 24°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 24th (Mon) to allow time for the car ride to Fujikawaguchiko-machi.

Things to do in Nikko

Historic Sites
Find places to stay Jun 24 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
Nikko Tosho-gu ©
Nikko Tosho-gu
Taiyuimbyo Shrine ©
Taiyuimbyo Shrine

2
nights
Fujikawaguchiko-machi

Fujikawaguchiko-machi ©
A resort town located in the foothills of Mount Fuji, Fujikawaguchiko-machi acts as a base for many who plan to take one of the trails up the iconic volcano.
On the 25th (Tue), take in the pleasant sights at Lake Kawaguchi, take in the spiritual surroundings of Kitaguchi Hongu Fuji Sengen Jinja Shrine, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Arakura Fuji Sengen Jinja, and finally explore the world behind art at Kawaguchiko Music Forest Museum.

To find maps, where to stay, more things to do, and other tourist information, you can read our Fujikawaguchiko-machi online road trip planner .

You can drive from Nikko to Fujikawaguchiko-machi in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of train and bus; or take a train. Prepare for a bit cooler weather when traveling from Nikko in June: high temperatures in Fujikawaguchiko-machi hover around 23°C and lows are around 21°C. On the 26th (Wed), you're off toMatsumoto.

Things to do in Fujikawaguchiko-machi

Parks Nature Historic Sites

Side Trip

Fujiyoshida
Find places to stay Jun 24 — 26:
Highlights from your plan
Lake Kawaguchi ©
Lake Kawaguchi
Arakura Fuji Sengen Jinja ©
Arakura Fuji Sengen Jinja

3
nights
Matsumoto

Matsumoto ©
A castle town, Matsumoto possesses one of the best-preserved feudal structures in the country, and maintains its historical attractions and traditions while simultaneously exuding a modern, cosmopolitan charm.
On the 27th (Thu), step into the grandiose world of Matsumoto Castle, indulge in Japan's hot spring tradition at some of the top local onsens, then take a stroll through Nawate Shopping District, and finally take a stroll through Nakamachi Street. Keep things going the next day: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Suwa Shrine, sample the tasty concoctions at Miyasaka Brewery, then stop by Cella Masumi, then explore and take pictures at Daio Wasabi Farm, and finally steep yourself in history at Kaichi Gakko Primary School.

To see ratings, where to stay, reviews, and other tourist information, go to the Matsumoto itinerary maker website .

You can drive from Fujikawaguchiko-machi to Matsumoto in 2 hours. Other options are to do a combination of bus and train; or take a train. Expect a bit warmer weather when traveling from Fujikawaguchiko-machi in June: highs in Matsumoto hover around 29°C, while lows dip to 21°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 29th (Sat) early enough to go by car to Kanazawa.

Things to do in Matsumoto

Historic Sites Neighborhoods Spas

Side Trips

Suwa, Daio Wasabi Farm
Find places to stay Jun 26 — 29:
Highlights from your plan
Matsumoto Castle ©
Matsumoto Castle
Suwa Shrine ©
Suwa Shrine
Kaichi Gakko Primary School ©
Kaichi Gakko Primary School

3
nights
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 2nd (Tue), step into the grandiose world of Kanazawa Castle, then take a stroll through Higashichaya Old Town, and then buy something for everyone on your list at Kanazawa Hyakubangai Shopping Center.

For more things to do, ratings, where to stay, and other tourist information, use the Kanazawa online trip planner .

Traveling by car from Tateyama-machi to Kanazawa takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train. July in Kanazawa sees daily highs of 34°C and lows of 26°C at night. On the 2nd (Tue), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can take a train to Kyoto.

Things to do in Kanazawa

Shopping Historic Sites Neighborhoods
Find places to stay Jun 29 — Jul 2:
Highlights from your plan
Kanazawa Castle ©
Kanazawa Castle
Higashichaya Old Town ©
Higashichaya Old Town

5
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.
Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Gion and Kinkaku-ji. Next up on the itinerary: steep yourself in history at Kiyomizu-dera Temple.

To see other places to visit, photos, and more tourist information, read our Kyoto trip itinerary builder site .

Take a train from Kanazawa to Kyoto in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. July in Kyoto sees daily highs of 37°C and lows of 28°C at night. On the 6th (Sat), you'll travel back home.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Neighborhoods
Find places to stay Jul 2 — 7:
Highlights from your plan
Kiyomizu-dera Temple ©
Kiyomizu-dera Temple
Kinkaku-ji ©
Kinkaku-ji
Gion
Gion

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