32 days in Japan Itinerary

32 days in Japan Itinerary

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Route & dates

32 days in Japan Itinerary

Start: Bangkok
+2
Fly + subway + train:  9​h 45​min
1
Hatsukaichi
— 1 night
2
Matsue
— 5 nights
taxi + Fly:  3​h 45​min
3
Tokyo
— 5 nights
train:  1​h
4
Narita
— 1 night
train:  3​h 45​min
5
Kyoto
— 5 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
6
Naniwa
— 1 night
Drive + Fly:  4​h 45​min
7
Ishigaki
— 2 nights
ferry:  1​h
8
Iriomote-jima
— 5 nights
ferry:  4​h
9
Miyakojima
— 5 nights
Fly:  9​h 45​min
End: Bangkok


Learn more about your trip

1
night
Hatsukaichi

Hatsukaichi ©
The city of Hatsukaichi developed from a small market town, frequented by passing samurais during the Edo period.
Start off your visit on the 14th (Fri): make a trip to Miyajima and then take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Mt. Misen. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Daishoin Temple, then contemplate the long history of Itsukushima Shrine Torii, and then contemplate the long history of Itsukushima Shrine.

To see maps, traveler tips, photos, and tourist information, refer to the Hatsukaichi online journey planner .

Bangkok, Thailand to Hatsukaichi is an approximately 10-hour combination of flight and train. Traveling from Bangkok to Hatsukaichi, you'll lose 2 hours due to the time zone difference. Prepare for much colder weather when traveling from Bangkok in December: high temperatures in Hatsukaichi hover around 13°C and lows are around 4°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 15th (Sat) early enough to drive to Matsue.

Things to do in Hatsukaichi

Historic Sites Nature Parks
Find places to stay Dec 14 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Itsukushima Shrine ©
Itsukushima Shrine
Daishoin Temple ©
Daishoin Temple
Itsukushima Shrine Torii ©
Itsukushima Shrine Torii

5
nights
Matsue

Matsue ©
Matsue sits on the banks of the Ohashi-gawa river, channeling its waters through a series of canals and rivers that add much to the scenic aspect of the urban area.
Your inner history buff will appreciate Yaegaki Shrine and Izumo Hinomisaki Lighthouse. Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Adachi Museum of Art and Shimane Museum of Ancient Izumo. Explore Matsue's surroundings by going to Oki Chibu Red Cliff (in Chibu-mura), Izumo (Former Taisha Station, Hinomisaki Shrine, & more) and Jokyu Sea Way Kinnyamonya Center (in Ama-cho). Next up on the itinerary: take in the spiritual surroundings of Miho Shrine, explore the world behind art at Shimane Art Museum, explore the activities along Shinji Lake, and explore the historical opulence of Matsue Castle.

For where to stay, ratings, maps, and tourist information, read our Matsue trip planner .

Traveling by car from Hatsukaichi to Matsue takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of train and bus; or take a train. In December, daytime highs in Matsue are 11°C, while nighttime lows are 4°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 20th (Thu) early enough to travel to Tokyo.

Things to do in Matsue

Historic Sites Parks Nature

Side Trips

Izumo, Daisen-cho, Shinji Lake, Oki Chibu Red Cliff, Jokyu Sea Way Kinnyamonya Center
Find places to stay Dec 15 — 20:
Highlights from your plan
Yaegaki Shrine ©
Yaegaki Shrine
Adachi Museum of Art ©
Adachi Museum of Art
Susa Shrine ©
Susa 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.
Explore hidden gems such as Minato Mirai 21 and Samurai Museum. Museum-lovers will appreciate Tokyo National Museum and Edo-Tokyo Museum. There's lots more to do: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Senso-ji Temple, view the masterpieces at Wa Space, wander the streets of Harajuku Takeshita-dori, and make a trip to Meiji Jingu Shrine.

To find traveler tips, reviews, more things to do, and tourist information, refer to the Tokyo itinerary planning site .

Traveling by combination of taxi and flight from Matsue to Tokyo takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of train and flight; or drive. Expect a daytime high around 14°C in December, and nighttime lows around 4°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 25th (Tue) early enough to drive to Narita.

Things to do in Tokyo

Neighborhoods Shopping Historic Sites

Side Trip

Minato Mirai 21
Find places to stay Dec 20 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
Odaiba ©
Odaiba
Tokyo National Museum ©
Tokyo National Museum
Sensō-ji ©
Sensō-ji

1
night
Narita

Narita ©
Pilgrims and aviators come to Narita, a town known during the Edo period for its temple, and now known primarily for its airport.
On the 26th (Wed), make a trip to Naritasan Omote Sando and then contemplate the long history of Naritasan Shinsho-ji Temple.

To see traveler tips, other places to visit, reviews, and other tourist information, read our Narita day trip planning tool .

Traveling by car from Tokyo to Narita takes an hour. Alternatively, you can take a train; or take a bus. Expect a bit cooler evenings in Narita when traveling from Tokyo in December, with lows around 1°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 26th (Wed) to allow time for travel to Kyoto.

Things to do in Narita

Historic Sites
Find places to stay Dec 25 — 26:
Highlights from your plan
Naritasan Shinsho-ji Temple ©
Naritasan Shinsho-ji Temple
Naritasan Omote Sando ©
Naritasan Omote Sando

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.
Discover out-of-the-way places like Tofuku-ji Temple and Kodai-ji Temple. Popular historic sites such as Kiyomizu-dera Temple and Kinkaku-ji are in your itinerary. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Kyoto: Nara (Nara Park & Todai-ji Temple). Next up on the itinerary: contemplate the long history of Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine, take in the spiritual surroundings of Ryoanji Temple, get the lay of the land with Walking tours, and explore the historical opulence of Nijo Castle.

To see where to stay, maps, traveler tips, and more tourist information, read Kyoto online road trip planner .

You can do a combination of train and flight from Narita to Kyoto in 4 hours. Other options are to take a train; or drive. In December, plan for daily highs up to 13°C, and evening lows to 4°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 31st (Mon) to allow enough time to travel to Naniwa.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Tours Neighborhoods

Side Trip

Nara
Find places to stay Dec 26 — 31:
Highlights from your plan
Kiyomizu-dera Temple ©
Kiyomizu-dera Temple
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine ©
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine
Eikando Zenrinji Temple ©
Eikando Zenrinji Temple

1
night
Naniwa

Naniwa ©
Kick off your visit on the 1st (Tue): don't miss a visit to Shinsaibashi, wander the streets of Dotonbori, and then shop like a local with Minami (Namba).

For photos, where to stay, other places to visit, and other tourist information, use the Naniwa online tour itinerary planner .

Traveling by car from Kyoto to Naniwa takes 1.5 hours. In December, daytime highs in Naniwa are 13°C, while nighttime lows are 6°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 1st (Tue) so you can travel to Ishigaki.

Things to do in Naniwa

Shopping Neighborhoods

Side Trip

Osaka
Find places to stay Dec 31 — Jan 1:
Highlights from your plan
Dotonbori ©
Dotonbori
Minami (Namba) ©
Minami (Namba)
Shinsaibashi-suji Shopping Street ©
Shinsaibashi-suji Shopping Street

2
nights
Ishigaki

Ishigaki ©
Ishigaki, the most populous island in the chain, features the country's southernmost city and acts as a transport hub for exploring the landmasses that surround.
Kick off your visit on the 2nd (Wed): stroll through Yonehara Beach, enjoy breathtaking views from Tamatorizaki Observatory, and then visit a coastal fixture at Cape Hirakubozaki. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: glide peacefully along the water with some of the best stand-up paddleboarding in the area and then enjoy the sand and surf at Kondoi Beach.

To find other places to visit, maps, ratings, and tourist information, read our Ishigaki travel route planner .

Use the Route module to find suitable travel options from Naniwa to Ishigaki. Traveling from Naniwa in January, things will get much warmer in Ishigaki: highs are around 24°C and lows about 19°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 3rd (Thu) to allow enough time to ride a ferry to Iriomote-jima.

Things to do in Ishigaki

Outdoors Parks Beaches

Side Trip

Kondoi Beach
Find places to stay Jan 1 — 3:
Highlights from your plan
Cape Hirakubozaki ©
Cape Hirakubozaki
Kondoi Beach ©
Kondoi Beach
Yonehara Beach ©
Yonehara Beach

5
nights
Iriomote-jima

Iriomote-jima ©
Taketomicho Iriomote-Jima stands as the second largest island in Okinawa.
Get outdoors at Canyoning & Rappelling Tours and Iriomote Wildlife Conservation Center. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Funauki Village and Kayaking & Canoeing. And it doesn't end there: head off the coast to Iriomote Island, enjoy the sand and surf at Ida no Hama Beach, take in the dramatic scenery at Mizuochi Falls, and contemplate the long history of Wasurenaishi.

For ratings, traveler tips, where to stay, and tourist information, use the Iriomote-jima sightseeing planning app .

You can ride a ferry from Ishigaki to Iriomote-jima in an hour. Expect a daytime high around 24°C in January, and nighttime lows around 19°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 8th (Tue) early enough to ride a ferry to Miyakojima.

Things to do in Iriomote-jima

Parks Outdoors Tours
Find places to stay Jan 3 — 8:
Highlights from your plan
Iriomote Island ©
Iriomote Island
Pinaisara Falls ©
Pinaisara Falls
Kayaking & Canoeing

5
nights
Miyakojima

Miyakojima ©
A city jurisdiction formed after the merger of several towns in 2005, Miyakojima spans six linked-up islands.
Get outdoors at Sunayama Beach and Shimojiiima Island. You'll discover tucked-away gems like Scuba & Snorkeling and Aragusuku Beach. Next up on the itinerary: stroll through Toguchi no Hama, kick back and relax at Yonaha Maehama Beach, enjoy the sea views from Higashi Hennazaki Lighthouse, and step off the mainland to explore Kouri Island.

For traveler tips, other places to visit, reviews, and more tourist information, refer to the Miyakojima trip itinerary builder .

Ride a ferry from Iriomote-jima to Miyakojima in 4 hours. In January in Miyakojima, expect temperatures between 24°C during the day and 19°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 13th (Sun) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Miyakojima

Parks Outdoors Beaches
Find places to stay Jan 8 — 13:
Highlights from your plan
Sunayama Beach ©
Sunayama Beach
Aragusuku Beach ©
Aragusuku Beach
Scuba & Snorkeling

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