30 days in Japan Itinerary

30 days in Japan Itinerary

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Route & dates

30 days in Japan Itinerary

Start: London
Fly:  14​h 45​min
1
Tokyo
— 6 nights
Drive:  2​h
2
Fujikawaguchiko-machi
— 4 nights
Drive:  4​h 30​min
3
Kanazawa
— 5 nights
train:  2​h 30​min
4
Kyoto
— 6 nights
train:  45​min
5
Himeji
— 3 nights
train:  1​h
6
Hiroshima
— 4 nights
+2
train + subway + Fly:  16​h 30​min
End: London

6
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.
Change things up with these side-trips from Tokyo: Ghibli Museum Mitaka (in Mitaka), Tokyo DisneySea (in Maihama) and Kōtoku-in (in Kamakura). Next up on the itinerary: make a trip to Meiji Jingu Shrine, take some stellar pictures from Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden, ponder the world of politics at Tokyo Metropolitan Government Buildings, and contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Senso-ji Temple.

For maps, other places to visit, more things to do, and tourist information, you can read our Tokyo planning website .

London, UK to Tokyo is an approximately 15-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and train. Traveling from London to Tokyo, you'll lose 9 hours due to the time zone difference. In December, daytime highs in Tokyo are 14°C, while nighttime lows are 4°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 21st (Sat) to allow enough time to drive to Fujikawaguchiko-machi.

Things to do in Tokyo

Neighborhoods Historic Sites Museums

Side Trips

Urayasu, Kōtoku-in, Ghibli Museum Mitaka, Nagakubo Park
Find places to stay Dec 15 — 21:
Highlights from your plan
Owl cafe Akiba Fukurou ©
Owl cafe Akiba Fukurou
Tokyo Tower ©
Tokyo Tower
Tokyo Metropolitan Government Buildings ©

4
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.
Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Fujikawaguchiko-machi: Reijin Brewery (in Suwa), Fujisan Hongu Sengen Taisha Shrine (in Fujinomiya) and Mt. Mano (in Shizuoka). Next up on the itinerary: get impressive views of Mount Fuji, see the interesting displays at Ikeda museum of 20th century art, admire the masterpieces at The Hakone Open-Air Museum, and contemplate the waterfront views at Lake Kawaguchi.

For where to stay, other places to visit, traveler tips, and other tourist information, read Fujikawaguchiko-machi road trip planner .

You can drive from Tokyo to Fujikawaguchiko-machi in 2 hours. Another option is to take a bus. When traveling from Tokyo in December, plan for a bit cooler days and about the same nights in Fujikawaguchiko-machi: temperatures range from 8°C by day to 5°C at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 25th (Wed) so you can go by car to Kanazawa.

Things to do in Fujikawaguchiko-machi

Nature Parks Museums

Side Trips

Hakone-machi, Mount Fuji, Mt. Mano, Matsumoto Castle, Fujisan Hongu Sengen Taisha Shrine
Find places to stay Dec 21 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
Mount Fuji ©
Mount Fuji
Matsumoto Castle ©
Matsumoto Castle
The Hakone Open-Air Museum ©
The Hakone Open-Air Museum

5
nights
Kanazawa

Kanazawa ©
An old castle town largely unspoiled during World War II, Kanazawa features well-preserved architecture spread across a range of districts.
Get out of town with these interesting Kanazawa side-trips: Ryokufu Resort Hida Nagareha (in Hida), Takayama (Takayama Jinya, Hida Minzoka Mura Folk Village (Hida no Sato), & more) and Shirakawa-mura (Wada House, Shirakawago Gassho Zukuri Minkaen, & more). And it doesn't end there: stroll around Kenrokuen Garden, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Ninja Temple, wander the streets of Higashichaya Old Town, and see the interesting displays at Ishikawa Prefectural Museum for Traditional Products and Crafts.

Before you visit Kanazawa, use our trip planner to discover what you can do and see there.

Drive from Fujikawaguchiko-machi to Kanazawa in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and train; or do a combination of bus and flight. In December in Kanazawa, expect temperatures between 11°C during the day and 3°C at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 30th (Mon) early enough to catch the train to Kyoto.

Things to do in Kanazawa

Historic Sites Museums Parks

Side Trips

Takayama, Shirakawa-mura, Ryokufu Resort Hida Nagareha
Find places to stay Dec 25 — 30:
Highlights from your plan
Kenrokuen Garden
Kenrokuen Garden
Takayama Jinya ©
Takayama Jinya

6
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.
Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Kyoto: Todai-ji Temple (in Nara) and Osaka (Universal Studios Japan, Osaka Castle, & more). There's much more to do: don't miss a visit to Kiyomizu-dera Temple, take in the spiritual surroundings of Kinkaku-ji, steep yourself in history at Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine, and take a stroll through Gion.

For reviews, ratings, traveler tips, and tourist information, you can read our Kyoto driving holiday planner.

Traveling by train from Kanazawa to Kyoto takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In December, plan for daily highs up to 13°C, and evening lows to 4°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 5th (Sun) so you can catch the train to Himeji.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Theme Parks Neighborhoods

Side Trips

Osaka, Todai-ji Temple
Find places to stay Dec 30 — Jan 5:
Highlights from your plan
Kiyomizu-dera Temple ©
Kiyomizu-dera Temple
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine ©
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine
Universal Studios Japan ©
Universal Studios Japan

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.
Change things up with these side-trips from Himeji: Daisen Outlook (in Mimasaka), Okayama Korakuen Garden (in Okayama) and Mt. Kuma (in Bizen). The adventure continues: make a trip to Himeji Castle, take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Mt. Takamikura, contemplate the long history of Yoneda Taishiji Temple, and take in nature's colorful creations at Koko-en Garden.

For where to stay, maps, photos, and other tourist information, refer to the Himeji planner .

Traveling by train from Kyoto to Himeji takes an hour. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. January in Himeji sees daily highs of 10°C and lows of 3°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 8th (Wed) to allow enough time to take a train to Hiroshima.

Things to do in Himeji

Parks Nature Historic Sites

Side Trips

Kunimi no Mori Park, Okayama Korakuen Garden, Yoneda Taishiji Temple, Mt. Kuma, Daisen Outlook
Find places to stay Jan 5 — 8:
Highlights from your plan
Okayama Korakuen Garden ©
Okayama Korakuen Garden
Himeji Castle ©
Himeji Castle
Koko-en ©
Koko-en

4
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 Hiroshima's surroundings by going to Hatsukaichi (Itsukushima Shrine & Miyajima), Kurashiki (Ohara Museum of Art & Kurashiki Bikan Historical Quarter) and Mt. Misen (in Miyajima). Next up on the itinerary: examine the collection at Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, get engrossed in the history at Hiroshima National Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims, explore the historical opulence of Hiroshima Castle, and admire the masterpieces at Hiroshima Museum of Art.

For traveler tips, ratings, photos, and tourist information, go to the Hiroshima itinerary site .

Traveling by train from Himeji to Hiroshima takes an hour. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of train and bus. In January, daily temperatures in Hiroshima can reach 11°C, while at night they dip to 2°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 12th (Sun) to allow time to travel back home.

Things to do in Hiroshima

Historic Sites Museums Nature

Side Trips

Hatsukaichi, Kurashiki
Find places to stay Jan 8 — 12:
Highlights from your plan
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum ©
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima ©
Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima
Itsukushima Shrine ©
Itsukushima Shrine

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