11 days in Kansai Itinerary

11 days in Kansai Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Kansai vacation planner
Make it your trip
— 2 nights
— 4 nights
— 1 night
— 1 night
— 2 nights


Osaka — 2 nights

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.
For shopping fun, head to Dotombori District or Tower Knives Osaka. Step off the beaten path and head to Waterfall of Mino and Osaka Shiritsu Toyo Toji Museum. There's still lots to do: explore the historical opulence of Osaka Castle, wander the streets of Midosuji Street, and browse the exhibits of Mint Museum.

To see photos, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read Osaka trip tool.

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia to Osaka is an approximately 9-hour flight. You can also do a combination of car and ferry. You'll lose 1 hour traveling from Kuala Lumpur to Osaka due to the time zone difference. Prepare for cooler weather when traveling from Kuala Lumpur in December: high temperatures in Osaka hover around 13°C and lows are around 4°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 15th (Thu) so you can take a train to Kyoto.
Shopping · Neighborhoods · Museums · Historic Sites
Side Trip
Find places to stay Dec 13 — 15:

Kyoto — 4 nights

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 discover tucked-away gems like Kyoto Gyoen National Garden and Chishaku-in. Your inner history buff will appreciate Shimogamo Jinja and Nijo Castle. There's still lots to do: take in the spiritual surroundings of Chion-in Temple, steep yourself in history at Kitano Tenmangu Shrine, relax and rejuvenate at some of the best spas, and learn and have fun at Ninja Dojo and Store.

To find other places to visit, reviews, photos, and tourist information, read our Kyoto day trip website.

Getting from Osaka to Kyoto by train takes about an hour. Other options: drive; or take a bus. In December, plan for daily highs up to 13°C, and evening lows to 4°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 19th (Mon) to allow time to drive to Nara.
Historic Sites · Parks · Classes · Spas
Find places to stay Dec 15 — 19:

Nara — 1 night

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.
To find traveler tips, where to stay, more things to do, and other tourist information, read our Nara online tour itinerary planner.

Traveling by car from Kyoto to Nara takes an hour. Alternatively, you can take a train. In December, daytime highs in Nara are 13°C, while nighttime lows are 6°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 20th (Tue) to allow time to drive to Kobe.
Historic Sites · Wildlife · Parks
Find places to stay Dec 19 — 20:

Kobe — 1 night

Walkable, small, and aesthetically charming, Kobe has served as Japan's first and premier international trading outpost since opening to trade with China in the mid-19th century.
Start off your visit on the 21st (Wed): indulge in Japan's hot spring tradition at some of the top local onsens.

For maps, traveler tips, reviews, and tourist information, read Kobe trip itinerary planning tool.

You can drive from Nara to Kobe in 1.5 hours. Other options are to take a train; or take a bus. In December in Kobe, expect temperatures between 13°C during the day and 6°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 21st (Wed) to allow enough time to drive to Osaka.
Spas · Baths
Find places to stay Dec 20 — 21:
Highlights from your trip

Osaka — 2 nights

Start off your visit on the 21st (Wed): admire the sheer force of Waterfall of Mino. On your second day here, take in the pleasant sights at Midosuji Street, wander the streets of Dotombori District, and then test your problem-solving skills at popular escape rooms.

To find more things to do, maps, photos, and more tourist information, refer to the Osaka trip planner.

You can drive from Kobe to Osaka in an hour. Other options are to take a train; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 23rd (Fri) to allow time to fly back home.
Neighborhoods · Shopping · Nature · Museums
Side Trip
Find places to stay Dec 21 — 23:

Kansai travel guide

Sacred & Religious Sites · Historic Sites · Landmarks
The center of Japan's military and political power for many centuries, the region of Kinki (or Kansai) contains most of the country's major cities. The majority of vacations in Kinki begin in Kyoto--the Japanese capital for nearly 1,000 years. This old city with a modern flare contains hundreds of ancient temples, 13 of which claim spots on the World Heritage List. Kinki's attractions stretch beyond just historical shrines and temples--the area's big claim to fame is its outstanding cuisine and a range of outdoor activities and shopping options. Convenient train routes linking three major regional centers--Osaka, Kobe, and Kyoto--make sightseeing in Kinki easy and pleasant.