27 days in Japan Itinerary

27 days in Japan Itinerary

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Route & dates

27 days in Japan Itinerary

Start: Melbourne
Fly:  15​h
1
Osaka
— 4 nights
train:  45​min
2
Nara
— 1 day
train:  45​min
3
Kyoto
— 2 nights
Drive:  4​h
4
Gotemba
— 2 nights
bus:  1​h 30​min
5
Yokohama
— 2 nights
+2
train + subway + train:  3​h 15​min
6
Nikko
— 2 nights
train:  1​h 45​min
7
Tokyo
— 5 nights
Fly:  4​h 15​min
8
Sapporo
— 3 nights
Fly:  4​h 15​min
9
Tokyo
— 4 nights
Fly:  13​h 30​min
End: Melbourne

4
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.
Your inner history buff will appreciate Himeji Castle and Nishinomiya Shrine. Museum-lovers will get to explore Osaka Shiritsu Toyo Toji Museum and Namban Culture Center. Get out of town with these interesting Osaka side-trips: Higashinada (Hakutsuru Sake Brewery Museum & Kobe Fashion Museum), CUPNOODLES MUSEUM OSAKA IKEDA (in Ikeda) and Takarazuka City Historical Museum Old Wada House (in Takarazuka). Next up on the itinerary: wander the streets of Dotonbori, examine the collection at Jikko Cutlery, take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Mt. Koya, and find something for the whole family at Universal Studios Japan.

For photos, ratings, other places to visit, and tourist information, you can read our Osaka online attractions planner .

Melbourne, Australia to Osaka is an approximately 15-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and train. Traveling from Melbourne to Osaka, you'll gain 1 hour due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Melbourne in January, expect Osaka to be cooler, temps between 10°C and 1°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 28th (Tue) to allow time to take a train to Nara.

Things to do in Osaka

Museums Historic Sites Theme Parks

Side Trips

Sakai, Amagasaki, Kobe, Nishinomiya Shrine, Himeji Castle
Find places to stay Jan 24 — 28:
Highlights from your plan
Osaka Shiritsu Toyo Toji Museum ©
Osaka Shiritsu Toyo Toji Museum
Himeji Castle ©
Himeji Castle
Osaka Castle ©
Osaka Castle

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.
Start off your visit on the 28th (Tue): steep yourself in history at Byodoin, take in the spiritual surroundings of Kasuga Grand Shrine, look for all kinds of wild species at Nara Park, then examine the collection at Todaiji Temple Cultural Center, then contemplate the long history of Todai-ji Temple, and finally look for gifts at Yu Nakagawa Masashichi Shoten Japan City Nara Sanjo.

For reviews, other places to visit, where to stay, and more tourist information, go to the Nara trip planner .

You can take a train from Osaka to Nara in an hour. Another option is to drive. Expect a daytime high around 9°C in January, and nighttime lows around 3°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 28th (Tue) to allow time to take a train to Kyoto.

Things to do in Nara

Historic Sites Parks Wildlife

Side Trip

Byodoin
Find places to stay Jan 28 — 29:
Highlights from your plan
Nara Park ©
Nara Park
Todai-ji Temple ©
Todai-ji Temple
Kasuga Grand Shrine ©
Kasuga Grand Shrine

2
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.
On the 29th (Wed), don't miss a visit to Nishiki Market Shopping District, explore the historical opulence of Nijo Castle, then contemplate the long history of Kiyomizu-dera Temple, and finally contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine.

To find ratings, photos, where to stay, and more tourist information, go to the Kyoto vacation maker tool .

Getting from Nara to Kyoto by train takes about an hour. Other options: drive; or do a combination of train and subway. Expect a daytime high around 10°C in January, and nighttime lows around 1°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 30th (Thu) to allow enough time to drive to Gotemba.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Shopping
Find places to stay Jan 28 — 30:
Highlights from your plan
Kiyomizu-dera Temple ©
Kiyomizu-dera Temple
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine ©
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine
Nijo Castle ©
Nijo Castle

2
nights
Gotemba

Gotemba ©
Trips to Gotemba, a city at the foot of Mount Fuji, offer plenty of opportunities to admire Japan's most famous natural feature.
Start off your visit on the 30th (Thu): pause for some photo ops at Japan's Highest Peak Fujisan Kengamine Monument, contemplate the geological forces at Mount Fuji, and then take in the spiritual surroundings of Fujisan Hongu Sengen Taisha Shrine. Keep things going the next day: examine the collection at Mt. Fuji World Heritage Centre, Shizuoka, look for all kinds of wild species at Wildlife Areas, get engrossed in the history at Mishima Taisha Homotsukan, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Mishima Taisha, and finally stroll through Gotemba Kogen Toki no Sumika.

To see reviews, traveler tips, and tourist information, refer to the Gotemba trip planner .

Drive from Kyoto to Gotemba in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or do a combination of flight and train. Traveling from Kyoto in January, expect nights in Gotemba to be about the same, around 3°C, while days are little chillier, around 5°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 1st (Sat) to allow time for the car ride to Yokohama.

Things to do in Gotemba

Parks Outdoors Tours

Side Trips

Mishima, Fujinomiya, Nature & Wildlife Tours, Mount Fuji, Japan's Highest Peak Fujisan Kengamine Monument
Find places to stay Jan 30 — Feb 1:
Highlights from your plan
Mount Fuji ©
Mount Fuji
Mishima Taisha ©
Mishima Taisha
Fujisan Hongu Sengen Taisha Shrine ©

2
nights
Yokohama

Yokohama ©
Once a small fishing town, Yokohama was one of the first ports to welcome foreign trade in the 19th century, after which it grew into Japan's second largest city and a bustling metropolis.
Start off your visit on the 1st (Sat): hike along Katabira-gawa Shinsui Ryokudo and then get a taste of the local shopping with Minato Mirai 21.

For photos, maps, traveler tips, and other tourist information, read our Yokohama trip itinerary planner.

Drive from Gotemba to Yokohama in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or take a train. Traveling from Gotemba in February, you will find days in Yokohama are a bit warmer (11°C), and nights are about the same (3°C). Finish your sightseeing early on the 3rd (Mon) to allow enough time to drive to Nikko.

Things to do in Yokohama

Museums Neighborhoods Historic Sites

Side Trips

Kamakura, Enoshima Island
Find places to stay Feb 1 — 3:
Highlights from your plan
Cup Noodles Museum Yokohama ©
Cup Noodles Museum Yokohama
Hase-dera Temple ©
Hase-dera Temple
Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine ©
Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine

2
nights
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.
Kick off your visit on the 3rd (Mon): examine the collection at Oya History Museum, contemplate the waterfront views at Lake Chuzenji, take in the dramatic scenery at Kegon Falls, then tour the pleasant surroundings at Kirifuri Highlands Kisuge Plain, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Nikko Tosho-gu, and finally steep yourself in history at Taiyuimbyo Shrine. On your second day here, snap pictures at Shinkyo Bridge, explore the wealth of natural beauty at Nikko National Park, then steep yourself in history at Nikko Futarasan jinja, and finally take in the exciting artwork at Kousyuuya.

To see traveler tips, more things to do, ratings, and more tourist information, read our Nikko attractions planner.

Traveling by car from Yokohama to Nikko takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or take a bus. When traveling from Yokohama in February, plan for a bit cooler days in Nikko, with highs around 8°C, while nights are about the same with lows around 5°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 5th (Wed) so you can catch the train to Tokyo.

Things to do in Nikko

Parks Nature Historic Sites

Side Trips

Nikko National Park, Oya History Museum
Find places to stay Feb 3 — 5:
Highlights from your plan
Kegon Falls ©
Kegon Falls
Nikko Tosho-gu ©
Nikko Tosho-gu
Taiyuimbyo Shrine ©
Taiyuimbyo Shrine

5
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.
Museum-lovers will appreciate National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation Miraikan and Mori Art Museum. Get some cultural insight at National Museum of Nature and Science and Imperial Palace. Change things up with these side-trips from Tokyo: Hachikokuyama Ryokuchi (in Higashimurayama), Kamiyatsuno Okusuu (in Ogose-machi) and Mt. Takao (in Hachioji). The adventure continues: ponder the world of politics at Tokyo Metropolitan Government Buildings, trek along Rock Garden, shop like a local with Ameya Yokocho (Ameyoko), and take in panoramic vistas at Tokyo Skytree.

To find other places to visit, traveler tips, maps, and tourist information, refer to the Tokyo trip planner .

Traveling by train from Nikko to Tokyo takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive. While traveling from Nikko, expect a bit warmer days and slightly colder nights in Tokyo, ranging from highs of 12°C to lows of 2°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 10th (Mon) early enough to travel to Sapporo.

Things to do in Tokyo

Parks Shopping Museums

Side Trips

Tokyo Disneyland, Rock Garden, Kamiyatsuno Okusuu, Hachikokuyama Ryokuchi, Kiyose Sunflower Farm
Find places to stay Feb 5 — 10:
Highlights from your plan
Mt. Takao ©
Mt. Takao
Imperial Palace ©
Imperial Palace

3
nights
Sapporo

Sapporo ©
A modern, bustling city known for its beer brewery, Sapporo attracts millions of visitors with its Snow Festival, during which elaborate ice and snow sculptures are exhibited all over town.
Get some historical perspective at Sapporo Clock Tower and Hokkaido Shrine Tongu. Historical Village of Hokkaido (Kaitaku-no Mura) and Hokkaido Jingu are good opportunities to explore the local culture. Venture out of the city with trips to Earth Dream Kakuyama Farm (in Ebetsu), Rusutsu Resort Ski (in Rusutsu-mura) and Otaru Canal (in Otaru). The adventure continues: take a stroll around Sapporo Underground Shopping Centre Aurora Town, stroll around Odori Park, contemplate the long history of Former Hokkaido Government Office Building, and examine the collection at Sapporo Beer Museum.

To plan Sapporo vacation without wasting time, ask Inspirock to design an itinerary.

Traveling by flight from Tokyo to Sapporo takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of train, taxi, and flight; or do a combination of flight and train. Traveling from Tokyo in February, you will find days in Sapporo are much colder (-1°C), and nights are a bit cooler (-5°C). Wrap up your sightseeing on the 13th (Thu) early enough to travel to Tokyo.

Things to do in Sapporo

Parks Outdoors Winter Sports

Side Trips

Earth Dream Kakuyama Farm, Rusutsu Resort Ski, Otaru Canal
Find places to stay Feb 10 — 13:
Highlights from your plan
Earth Dream Kakuyama Farm ©
Earth Dream Kakuyama Farm
Sapporo Clock Tower ©
Sapporo Clock Tower

4
nights
Tokyo

Tokyo ©
Shop till you drop at Ginza and Art Jeunesse Akihabara. Your cultural itinerary includes sights like Tokyo National Museum and Ghibli Museum Mitaka. Change things up with these side-trips from Tokyo: America Camp Village (in Okutama-machi), Minamisawa Ajisaiyama (in Akiruno) and Marugami Falls (in Ogano-machi). See some other sides of Tokyo: take in the spiritual surroundings of Senso-ji Temple, take a stroll through Asakusa, make a trip to Meiji Jingu Shrine, and get a taste of the local shopping with TOKYO Samurai Kembu.

To find traveler tips, more things to do, ratings, and more tourist information, go to the Tokyo trip itinerary maker tool .

Traveling by flight from Sapporo to Tokyo takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight, taxi, and train; or do a combination of train and flight. Traveling from Sapporo in February, expect nights in Tokyo to be somewhat warmer, around 2°C, while days are much hotter, around 12°C. On the 17th (Mon), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Tokyo

Neighborhoods Shopping Museums

Side Trips

Marugami Falls, Minamisawa Ajisaiyama, Mito Eki Building Excel Minami, Wildlife Center, America Camp Village
Find places to stay Feb 13 — 17:
Highlights from your plan
Tokyo National Museum ©
Tokyo National Museum
Senso-ji Temple ©
Senso-ji Temple
Edo-Tokyo Museum ©
Edo-Tokyo Museum

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