21 days in Japan Itinerary

21 days in Japan Itinerary

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Route & dates

21 days in Japan Itinerary

Start: Vancouver
Fly:  13​h 15​min
1
Tokyo
— 4 nights
2
Takayama
— 4 nights
train:  4​h 15​min
3
Himeji
— 3 nights
train:  1​h
4
Hiroshima
— 3 nights
train:  1​h 45​min
5
Kyoto
— 5 nights
train + Fly:  13​h 15​min
End: Vancouver

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.
Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Food Tours and Mt. Takao. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Tokyo: Kinchakuda Manjushage Park (in Hidaka) and Yokohama Intl Passenger Terminal (in Naka). There's still lots to do: take in nature's colorful creations at Happoen Garden, wander the streets of Ueno, admire the landmark architecture of Tokyo Tower, and enjoy breathtaking views from Observatory, Seaside Top.

To find ratings, photos, where to stay, and more tourist information, read Tokyo trip itinerary maker .

Vancouver, Canada to Tokyo is an approximately 13.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and train; or do a combination of train and flight. The time zone difference moving from Pacific Standard Time (PST) to Japan Standard Time (JST) is 17 hours. Expect somewhat warmer temperatures when traveling from Vancouver in October; daily highs in Tokyo reach 26°C and lows reach 18°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 25th (Fri) early enough to drive to Takayama.

Things to do in Tokyo

Parks Nature Tours

Side Trips

Mt. Takao, Kinchakuda Manjushage Park, Yokohama Intl Passenger Terminal
Find places to stay Oct 21 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
Kinchakuda Manjushage Park ©
Kinchakuda Manjushage Park
Food Tours
Mt. Takao ©
Mt. Takao

4
nights
Takayama

Takayama ©
Hidden high up in the Japanese Alps, Takayama remained largely cut off from the rest of Japan for centuries, allowing the local culture to grow in relative isolation.
You'll discover tucked-away gems like Senjojiki Cirque and Onsen Resorts. Take a break from Takayama with a short trip to Taisho Pond in Matsumoto, about 1h 05 min away. And it doesn't end there: savor the flavors at Food & Drink, snap pictures at Nakabashi Bridge, learn more about the world around you at Hida Minzoka Mura Folk Village (Hida no Sato), and make a trip to Shokawa-Zakura.

To find ratings, traveler tips, maps, and other tourist information, go to the Takayama trip itinerary planning app .

Traveling by car from Tokyo to Takayama takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or take a bus. In October in Takayama, expect temperatures between 24°C during the day and 16°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 29th (Tue) to allow enough time to take a train to Himeji.

Things to do in Takayama

Parks Winter Sports Outdoors

Side Trips

Senjojiki Cirque, Taisho Pond
Find places to stay Oct 25 — 29:
Highlights from your plan
Senjojiki Cirque ©
Senjojiki Cirque
Wine Tours & Tastings
Taisho Pond ©
Taisho Pond

3
nights
Himeji

Himeji ©
The castle around which the city of Himeji has developed represents one of the best preserved in the country, and has been designated as a national treasure and a World Heritage Site.
You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Koko-en Garden and Otokoyama Haisuiike Park. Venture out of the city with trips to Okayama (Okayama Korakuen Garden & Yumeji Art Museum (Yumeji-Kyodo Bijutsukan)) and Fuji Park (in Wake-cho). The adventure continues: go for a walk through Himeji Castle, look for gifts at Yamasa Kamaboko Yumesenkan, admire the natural beauty at Himeji City Tegarayama Botanical Garden, and tour the pleasant surroundings at Mt Shosha hiking.

For other places to visit, traveler tips, where to stay, and more tourist information, go to the Himeji trip planner.

Take a train from Takayama to Himeji in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and train. Traveling from Takayama in October, plan for a bit warmer nights in Himeji, with lows around 20°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 1st (Fri) so you can take a train to Hiroshima.

Things to do in Himeji

Parks Outdoors Trails

Side Trips

Okayama, Fuji Park
Find places to stay Oct 29 — Nov 1:
Highlights from your plan
Koko-en Garden ©
Koko-en Garden
Himeji Castle ©
Himeji Castle
Okayama Korakuen Garden ©
Okayama Korakuen Garden

3
nights
Hiroshima

Hiroshima ©
Grapple with history and appreciate modernity in Hiroshima, a city known around the world for its tragic past and inspiring rebirth.
Explore hidden gems such as Mitaki Temple and Peace Flame. There's lots more to do: appreciate the history behind Peace Bell, step into the grandiose world of Hiroshima Castle, explore the activities along Motoyasu River, and make a trip to Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima.

For traveler tips, maps, ratings, and more tourist information, read our Hiroshima trip itinerary builder website .

Traveling by train from Himeji to Hiroshima takes an hour. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of train and bus. In November, daily temperatures in Hiroshima can reach 20°C, while at night they dip to 11°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 4th (Mon) to allow time to take a train to Kyoto.

Things to do in Hiroshima

Historic Sites Museums Parks
Find places to stay Nov 1 — 4:
Highlights from your plan
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum ©
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
Mitaki Temple ©
Mitaki Temple
Peace Bell ©
Peace Bell

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.
You'll discover tucked-away gems like Eikando Zenrinji Temple and Tenryuji Temple. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Kyoto: Koyasan Okunoin (in Koya-cho), Amanohashidate (in Miyazu) and Suzuka Circuit (in Suzuka). There's much more to do: contemplate the long history of Kiyomizu-dera Temple, take in nature's colorful creations at Nanzen-ji Temple, take in the spiritual surroundings of Chion-in Temple, and appreciate the extensive heritage of Hieizan Enryaku-ji Temple.

To see ratings, where to stay, more things to do, and more tourist information, refer to the Kyoto online driving holiday planner .

You can take a train from Hiroshima to Kyoto in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In November, plan for daily highs up to 19°C, and evening lows to 10°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 9th (Sat) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Parks Nature

Side Trips

Hieizan Enryaku-ji Temple, Amanohashidate, Koyasan Okunoin, Suzuka Circuit
Find places to stay Nov 4 — 9:
Highlights from your plan
Eikando Zenrinji Temple ©
Eikando Zenrinji Temple
Kiyomizu-dera Temple ©
Kiyomizu-dera Temple
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine ©
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine

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