22 days in Kansai Itinerary

22 days in Kansai Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Kansai trip planner

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Route & dates

22 days in Kansai Itinerary

Start: San Francisco
Fly:  17​h 15​min
1
Himeji
— 2 nights
train:  1​h 45​min
2
Toyooka
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h
3
Koya-cho
— 3 nights
Drive:  2​h 15​min
4
Tanabe
— 3 nights
Drive:  2​h
5
Nachikatsura-cho
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h
6
Kyoto
— 7 nights
train + Fly:  14​h 15​min
End: San Francisco

2
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.
On the 9th (Fri), step into the grandiose world of Himeji Castle, take in nature's colorful creations at Koko-en Garden, take in the pleasant sights at Otokoyama Haisuiike Park, then make a trip to Shoshazan Engyoji, and finally take in the spiritual surroundings of Nagoyama Reien Busharito. On the 10th (Sat), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: contemplate the long history of Yoneda Taishiji Temple, take in the awesome beauty at Mt. Takamikura, and then take in the views from Akashi Kaikyo Bridge.

To see photos, ratings, traveler tips, and tourist information, read Himeji travel planner.

San Francisco, USA to Himeji is an approximately 17.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and train; or do a combination of flight, bus, and train. Traveling from San Francisco to Himeji, you'll lose 17 hours due to the time zone difference. Traveling from San Francisco in October, plan for a bit warmer nights in Himeji, with lows around 64°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 10th (Sat) to allow enough time to take a train to Toyooka.

Things to do in Himeji

Historic Sites Parks Nature

Side Trips

Akashi Kaikyo Bridge, Yoneda Taishiji Temple, Mt. Takamikura
Find places to stay Oct 8 — 10:
Highlights from your plan
Himeji Castle ©
Himeji Castle
Shoshazan Engyoji ©
Shoshazan Engyoji
Akashi Kaikyo Bridge ©
Akashi Kaikyo Bridge

3
nights
Toyooka

Toyooka ©
A vacation in Toyooka lets you explore the UNESCO Global Geopark that completely surrounds the small town, notable for its scenic islands, rock formations, caves, and sand dunes.
Step off the beaten path and head to Ine no Funaya and Takeda Castle Ruins. Get out of town with these interesting Toyooka side-trips: Kotohira Shrine (in Kyotango), Miyazu (Amanohashidate & Kasamatsu Park) and Takeda Teramachi Street (in Asago). The adventure continues: get to know the fascinating history of Street of Kinosaki Onsen and observe the fascinating underwater world at Kinosaki Marine World.

For more things to do, maps, reviews, and tourist information, read our Toyooka journey planning website .

Take a train from Himeji to Toyooka in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive. Expect a bit cooler evenings in Toyooka when traveling from Himeji in October, with lows around 58°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 13th (Tue) so you can drive to Koya-cho.

Things to do in Toyooka

Parks Historic Sites Zoos & Aquariums

Side Trips

Miyazu, Asago, Ine no Funaya, Kotohira Shrine
Find places to stay Oct 10 — 13:
Highlights from your plan
Amanohashidate ©
Amanohashidate
Ine no Funaya ©
Ine no Funaya
Takeda Castle Ruins ©
Takeda Castle Ruins

3
nights
Koya-cho

Koya-cho ©
Discover out-of-the-way places like Koyasan Okunoin and Koyasan Danjo Garan. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Koya-cho: Tenkawa-mura (Omine Okugakemichi & Toro Cave) and Tanizeno Tsuribashi (in Totsukawa-mura).

For more things to do, ratings, and more tourist information, read our Koya-cho trip site .

Drive from Toyooka to Koya-cho in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and train; or take a train. In October, daily temperatures in Koya-cho can reach 73°F, while at night they dip to 63°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 16th (Fri) early enough to go by car to Tanabe.

Things to do in Koya-cho

Historic Sites Nature Parks

Side Trips

Tenkawa-mura, Tanizeno Tsuribashi
Find places to stay Oct 13 — 16:
Highlights from your plan
Koyasan Danjo Garan ©
Koyasan Danjo Garan
Kongobu-ji Temple ©
Kongobu-ji Temple
Mt. Koya ©
Mt. Koya

3
nights
Tanabe

Tanabe ©
Considered a holy space where the gods once lived, the city of Tanabe teems with spiritual, cultural, and natural beauty.
You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Kumano Kodo Pilgrimage Routes and Shirarahama Beach. And it doesn't end there: take in the spiritual surroundings of Kumano Hongu Taisha Shrine, contemplate the long history of Oyunohara - Original Kumano Hongu Taisha Site, make a trip to 十丈峠 Kumano Kodo Trail, and savor the flavors at Kisaikan Farmers Market.

To find out how to plan a trip to Tanabe, use our trip itinerary maker.

You can drive from Koya-cho to Tanabe in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or take a train. Expect a daytime high around 74°F in October, and nighttime lows around 66°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 19th (Mon) to allow time to drive to Nachikatsura-cho.

Things to do in Tanabe

Parks Outdoors Trails

Side Trips

十丈峠 Kumano Kodo Trail, Shirarahama Beach
Find places to stay Oct 16 — 19:
Highlights from your plan
Shirarahama Beach ©
Shirarahama Beach
Kumano Hongu Taisha Shrine ©
Kumano Hongu Taisha Shrine
十丈峠 Kumano Kodo Trail ©
十丈峠 Kumano Kodo Trail

3
nights
Nachikatsura-cho

Nachikatsura-cho ©
The town of Nachikatsuura-cho wows visitors with its superlative landscape and impressive cultural attractions.
Step off the beaten path and head to Nachi Mitaki Falls and Kumano Nachi Taisha. Get out of town with these interesting Nachikatsura-cho side-trips: Shingu (Kamikura Shrine & Kumano Hayatama Taisha) and Hashigui Rock (in Kushimoto-cho). There's still lots to do: take in the spiritual surroundings of Seigantoji Temple, make a trip to Daimonzaka, enjoy breathtaking views from Hiramidaienchi, and explore the activities along Kajitorizaki.

To see traveler tips, other places to visit, maps, and more tourist information, read Nachikatsura-cho itinerary planner .

Getting from Tanabe to Nachikatsura-cho by car takes about 2 hours. Other options: take a train. Expect a daytime high around 74°F in October, and nighttime lows around 66°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 22nd (Thu) so you can go by car to Kyoto.

Things to do in Nachikatsura-cho

Historic Sites Nature Parks

Side Trips

Taiji-cho, Shingu, Hashigui Rock
Find places to stay Oct 19 — 22:
Highlights from your plan
Kumano Nachi Taisha ©
Kumano Nachi Taisha
Nachi Mitaki Falls ©
Nachi Mitaki Falls
Kamikura Shrine ©
Kamikura Shrine

7
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 explore the less-touristy side of things at Eikando Zenrinji Temple and Hikone Castle. Get out of town with these interesting Kyoto side-trips: Osaka (Osaka Castle, Senko-ji Temple, & more). There's much more to do: contemplate the long history of Kiyomizu-dera Temple, take in the spiritual surroundings of Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine, admire the natural beauty at Nanzen-ji Temple, and get to know the fascinating history of Hieizan Enryaku-ji Temple.

For more things to do, maps, other places to visit, and tourist information, you can read our Kyoto trip itinerary builder .

You can drive from Nachikatsura-cho to Kyoto in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or take a bus. Traveling from Nachikatsura-cho in October, plan for a bit cooler nights in Kyoto, with lows around 60°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 29th (Thu) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Neighborhoods Parks

Side Trips

Osaka, Hieizan Enryaku-ji Temple, Hikone Castle
Find places to stay Oct 22 — 29:
Highlights from your plan
Eikando Zenrinji Temple ©
Eikando Zenrinji Temple
Kiyomizu-dera Temple ©
Kiyomizu-dera Temple
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine ©
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine