36 days in Japan Itinerary

36 days in Japan Itinerary

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Route & dates

36 days in Japan Itinerary

Start: Ulaanbaatar
Fly:  10​h
1
Ishigaki
— 4 nights
+2
Fly + subway + train:  6​h
2
Nagasaki
— 3 nights
train:  3​h 30​min
3
Hiroshima
— 4 nights
train:  1​h
4
Himeji
— 4 nights
train:  45​min
5
Kyoto
— 5 nights
train:  45​min
6
Nagoya
— 4 nights
Drive:  2​h 45​min
7
Kanazawa
— 3 nights
train:  2​h 30​min
8
Tokyo
— 6 nights
Fly:  6​h 15​min
End: Ulaanbaatar

4
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.
Ishigaki is known for nature, beaches, adventure, historic sites, and parks. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: explore the activities along Kabira Bay, get outside with Yarabudake, enjoy the sea views from Cape Hirakubozaki, and enjoy the sand and surf at Yonehara Beach.

To see maps, where to stay, other places to visit, and tourist information, go to the Ishigaki trip itinerary builder website .

Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia to Ishigaki is an approximately 10-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight, taxi, and ferry. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 1 hour traveling from Ulaanbaatar to Ishigaki. Prepare for much hotter weather when traveling from Ulaanbaatar in February: high temperatures in Ishigaki hover around 25°C and lows are around 19°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 20th (Wed) so you can travel to Nagasaki.

Things to do in Ishigaki

Outdoors Parks Tours
Find places to stay Feb 16 — 20:
Highlights from your plan
Cape Hirakubozaki ©
Cape Hirakubozaki
Kabira Bay ©
Kabira Bay
Tamatorizaki Observatory ©
Tamatorizaki Observatory

3
nights
Nagasaki

Nagasaki ©
The hilly port city of Nagasaki has become known internationally as one of the two Japanese cities to be destroyed by an atomic bomb towards the close of World War II.
You'll find plenty of places to visit near Nagasaki: Sasebo (Huis Ten Bosch, Ishidake Observatory, & more). Next up on the itinerary: get engrossed in the history at Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Sofukuji Temple, pause for some serene contemplation at Ōura Church, and steep yourself in history at Nagasaki Peace Park.

For maps, more things to do, and more tourist information, read our Nagasaki road trip planner.

You can do a combination of flight and train from Ishigaki to Nagasaki in 6 hours. Alternatively, you can fly. Traveling from Ishigaki in February, things will get cooler in Nagasaki: highs are around 12°C and lows about 5°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 24th (Sun) so you can take a train to Hiroshima.

Things to do in Nagasaki

Parks Historic Sites Nature

Side Trip

Sasebo
Find places to stay Feb 20 — 24:
Highlights from your plan
Glover Garden ©
Glover Garden
Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum ©
Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum
Huis Ten Bosch ©
Huis Ten Bosch

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.
You'll find plenty of places to visit near Hiroshima: Mt. Misen (in Miyajima) and Hatsukaichi (Itsukushima Gekijyo, Miyajima, & more). Next up on the itinerary: see the interesting displays at Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, explore the historical opulence of Hiroshima Castle, admire the masterpieces at Hiroshima Museum of Art, and appreciate the history behind Peace Bell.

For ratings, more things to do, reviews, and tourist information, use the Hiroshima trip maker .

Take a train from Nagasaki to Hiroshima in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In February, plan for daily highs up to 11°C, and evening lows to 3°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 28th (Thu) so you can take a train to Himeji.

Things to do in Hiroshima

Historic Sites Museums Parks

Side Trip

Hatsukaichi
Find places to stay Feb 24 — 28:
Highlights from your plan
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum ©
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima ©
Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima
Atomic Bomb Dome ©
Atomic Bomb Dome

4
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 find plenty of places to visit near Himeji: Korakuen Garden (in Okayama), Otabu Gyoko Genroku Bohatei (in Bizen) and Chinatown (Nankinmachi) (in Chuo). Next up on the itinerary: don't miss a visit to Himeji Castle, admire the natural beauty at Kokoen Garden, contemplate the long history of Yoneda Taishiji Temple, and contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Sumiyoshi Shrine.

To find photos, more things to do, traveler tips, and more tourist information, go to the Himeji travel route planner .

Traveling by train from Hiroshima to Himeji takes an hour. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and train. Expect a daytime high around 10°C in February, and nighttime lows around 3°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 4th (Mon) to allow time to take a train to Kyoto.

Things to do in Himeji

Parks Historic Sites Outdoors

Side Trips

Kobe, Yoneda Taishiji Temple, Sumiyoshi Shrine, Otabu Gyoko Genroku Bohatei, Mt. Takamikura
Find places to stay Feb 28 — Mar 4:
Highlights from your plan
Okayama Korakuen Garden ©
Okayama Korakuen Garden
Himeji Castle ©
Himeji Castle
Koko-en ©
Koko-en

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.
Kyoto is known for historic sites, shopping, classes, parks, and museums. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: steep yourself in history at Kiyomizu-dera Temple, take a stroll through Dotonbori, take in the pleasant sights at Arashiyama, and explore the historical opulence of Osaka Castle.

For reviews, maps, ratings, and more tourist information, you can read our Kyoto trip itinerary maker tool .

You can take a train from Himeji to Kyoto in an hour. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. In March, daytime highs in Kyoto are 16°C, while nighttime lows are 5°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 9th (Sat) to allow time to take a train to Nagoya.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Theme Parks Neighborhoods

Side Trips

Osaka, Jishu Shrine
Find places to stay Mar 4 — 9:
Highlights from your plan
Kiyomizu-dera Temple ©
Kiyomizu-dera Temple
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine ©
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine
Universal Studios Japan ©
Universal Studios Japan

4
nights
Nagoya

Nagoya ©
Known nationally as an industrial heartland, Nagoya boasts a far more cosmopolitan and cultural core than its reputation would lead you to believe.
You'll find plenty of places to visit near Nagoya: Jozanen (in Anjo), Chubu Park (in Toin-cho) and Nabana no Sato (in Kuwana). There's much more to do: contemplate the long history of Nagoya Castle, admire the landmark architecture of Former Toba Elementary School, admire the masterpieces at Tokugawa Art Museum, and get great views at Okage Yokocho.

To find other places to visit, where to stay, ratings, and tourist information, refer to the Nagoya vacation planner .

Take a train from Kyoto to Nagoya in an hour. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. March in Nagoya sees daily highs of 13°C and lows of 7°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 13th (Wed) to allow enough time to drive to Kanazawa.

Things to do in Nagoya

Parks Zoos & Aquariums Museums

Side Trips

Ise, Toba, Chubu Park, Nishio City Iwase Bunko Library, Nabana no Sato
Find places to stay Mar 9 — 13:
Highlights from your plan
Chubu Park ©
Chubu Park
Port of Nagoya Public Aquarium ©
Port of Nagoya Public Aquarium
Toba Aquarium ©
Toba Aquarium

3
nights
Kanazawa

Kanazawa ©
An old castle town largely unspoiled during World War II, Kanazawa features well-preserved architecture spread across a range of districts.
Venture out of the city with trips to Shirakawa-mura (Shirakawago Gassho Zukuri Minkaen, The Historic Villages of Shirakawa-go Gassho Style Houses, & more), Aratama Valley (in Komatsu) and Nakaya Ukichiro Museum of Snow and Ice (in Kaga). Next up on the itinerary: admire the natural beauty at Kenrokuen Garden, examine the collection at Ishikawa Prefectural Museum for Traditional Products and Crafts, step into the grandiose world of Kanazawa Castle, and explore the world behind art at 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art.

To see ratings, photos, maps, and tourist information, you can read our Kanazawa day trip planner.

Traveling by car from Nagoya to Kanazawa takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or take a bus. Traveling from Nagoya in March, expect slightly colder with lows of 3°C in Kanazawa. Finish your sightseeing early on the 16th (Sat) so you can take a train to Tokyo.

Things to do in Kanazawa

Historic Sites Museums Parks

Side Trips

Shirakawa-mura, Aratama Valley, Nakaya Ukichiro Museum of Snow and Ice
Find places to stay Mar 13 — 16:
Highlights from your plan
Kenrokuen Garden
Kenrokuen Garden
Shirakawago Gassho Zukuri Minkaen ©
Shirakawago Gassho Zukuri Minkaen

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.
Take a break from Tokyo with a short trip to Tokyo DisneySea in Urayasu, about 30 minutes away. Have a day of magic on the 20th (Wed) at Tokyo Disneyland. There's much more to do: don't miss a visit to Meiji Jingu Shrine, get a sense of history and politics at Tokyo Metropolitan Government Buildings, take a stroll through Odaiba, and get engrossed in the history at Tokyo National Museum.

Quickly create a custom-made itinerary for Tokyo using our trip planner.

Traveling by train from Kanazawa to Tokyo takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of train, bus, and flight; or drive. Traveling from Kanazawa in March, expect Tokyo to be a bit warmer, temps between 17°C and 7°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 22nd (Fri) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Tokyo

Theme Parks Neighborhoods Museums

Side Trip

Urayasu
Find places to stay Mar 16 — 22:
Highlights from your plan
Owl cafe Akiba Fukurou ©
Owl cafe Akiba Fukurou
Meiji Jingu Shrine ©
Meiji Jingu Shrine
Tokyo Tower ©
Tokyo Tower

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