43 days in Japan Itinerary

43 days in Japan Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Japan attractions planner

Make it your trip
Fly
1
Kanazawa
— 5 nights
Train
2
Matsumoto
— 6 nights
Train
3
Tokyo
— 7 nights
Fly
4
Ishigaki
— 6 nights
Fly
5
Nagasaki
— 3 nights
Train
6
Hiroshima
— 5 nights
Train
7
Himeji
— 2 nights
Train
8
Kyoto
— 8 nights
Fly

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Kanazawa

— 5 nights
An old castle town largely unspoiled during World War II, Kanazawa features well-preserved architecture spread across a range of districts.
You'll find plenty of places to visit near Kanazawa: Shirakawa-mura (Nagase house, The Historic Villages of Shirakawa-go Gassho Style Houses, &more). And it doesn't end there: take in nature's colorful creations at Kenrokuen Garden, explore the world behind art at 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa, make a trip to Kenrokuen no Yukizuri, and examine the collection at Dolls Museum.

To find more things to do, other places to visit, traveler tips, and other tourist information, read Kanazawa sightseeing website.

San Francisco, USA to Kanazawa is an approximately 15-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight, tram, and train. You'll lose 17 hours traveling from San Francisco to Kanazawa due to the time zone difference. In October, daily temperatures in Kanazawa can reach 70°F, while at night they dip to 56°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 12th (Tue) to allow time to take a train to Matsumoto.

Things to do in Kanazawa

Historic Sites · Museums · Parks · Neighborhoods

Side Trip

Find places to stay Oct 7 — 12:

Matsumoto

— 6 nights
A castle town, Matsumoto possesses one of the best-preserved feudal structures in the country, and maintains its historical attractions and traditions while simultaneously exuding a modern, cosmopolitan charm.
Explore Matsumoto's surroundings by going to Tsugaike Natural Park (in Otari-mura), Takayama (Sanmachi Suji, Takayama Festival Floats Exhibition Hall, &more) and Happo-one Nature Study Course (in Hakuba-mura). There's still lots to do: explore the historical opulence of Matsumoto Castle, indulge in some personalized pampering at Zuisho Matsumotokan, explore the world behind art at Japan Ukiyo-e Museum, and head outdoors with Mt. KItahodaka.

For maps, traveler tips, where to stay, and other tourist information, you can read our Matsumoto trip planner.

Traveling by train from Kanazawa to Matsumoto takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. When traveling from Kanazawa in October, plan for a bit cooler days and about the same nights in Matsumoto: temperatures range from 65°F by day to 54°F at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 18th (Mon) early enough to take a train to Tokyo.

Things to do in Matsumoto

Outdoors · Parks · Wildlife · Nature

Side Trips

Find places to stay Oct 12 — 18:

Tokyo

— 7 nights
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.
Get out of town with these interesting Tokyo side-trips: Yokohama Museum of Art (in Minatomirai) and Tokyo DisneySea (in Maihama). Have a day of magic on the 25th (Mon) at Tokyo Disneyland. There's much more to do: don't miss a visit to Meiji Jingu Shrine, take a stroll through Odaiba District, take in panoramic vistas at Tokyo Skytree, and explore the world behind art at Tokyo National Museum.

To see other places to visit, ratings, photos, and other tourist information, use the Tokyo route maker tool.

Take a train from Matsumoto to Tokyo in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In October, Tokyo is somewhat warmer than Matsumoto - with highs of 72°F and lows of 60°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 25th (Mon) to allow time to fly to Ishigaki.

Things to do in Tokyo

Neighborhoods · Theme Parks · Parks · Museums

Side Trips

Find places to stay Oct 18 — 25:

Ishigaki

— 6 nights
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.
Step out of Ishigaki to go to Iriomote-jima and see Canyoning & Rappelling Tours, which is approximately 1h 55 min away. Spend 26th (Tue) immersed in the deep blue with Prime Scuba Ishigaki Diving Center - Day Tour. There's still lots to do: explore the activities along Kabira Bay, indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas, visit a coastal fixture at Cape Hirakubozaki, and kick back and relax at Yonehara Beach.

To find traveler tips, where to stay, more things to do, and tourist information, read Ishigaki trip site.

You can fly from Tokyo to Ishigaki in 4.5 hours. Expect a bit warmer temperatures when traveling from Tokyo in October; daily highs in Ishigaki reach 85°F and lows reach 76°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 31st (Sun) so you can fly to Nagasaki.

Things to do in Ishigaki

Outdoors · Tours · Parks · Wildlife

Side Trip

Find places to stay Oct 25 — 31:

Nagasaki

— 3 nights

City of Peace

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. This history, of course, remains important to the city, its inhabitants, and to the wider world, and should not be forgotten.
Go for a jaunt from Nagasaki to Sasebo to see Huis Ten Bosch about 1h 15 min away. Next up on the itinerary: get engrossed in the history at Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum, take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Mt. Inasa, don't miss a visit to Glover Garden, and walk around Nabekanmuriyama Park.

To see traveler tips, other places to visit, ratings, and tourist information, read Nagasaki travel planning website.

Fly from Ishigaki to Nagasaki in 5.5 hours. Traveling from Ishigaki in October, expect Nagasaki to be a bit cooler, temps between 75°F and 63°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 3rd (Wed) to allow time to take a train to Hiroshima.

Things to do in Nagasaki

Parks · Museums · Historic Sites · Theme Parks

Side Trip

Find places to stay Oct 31 — Nov 3:

Hiroshima

— 5 nights

City of Peace

Grapple with history and appreciate modernity in Hiroshima, a city known around the world for its tragic past and inspiring rebirth.
Get out of town with these interesting Hiroshima side-trips: Ohara Museum of Art (in Kurashiki), Hatsukaichi (Itsukushima Shrine & Paddle Park) and Mt. Misen (in Miyajima). There's lots more to do: examine the collection at Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, take in nature's colorful creations at Okayama Korakuen Garden, explore the world behind art at Hiroshima Museum of Art, and appreciate the history behind Children's Peace Monument.

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

Getting from Nagasaki to Hiroshima by train takes about 4 hours. Other options: do a combination of bus and train; or drive. Expect a daytime high around 63°F in November, and nighttime lows around 49°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 8th (Mon) early enough to take a train to Himeji.

Things to do in Hiroshima

Historic Sites · Museums · Parks · Outdoors

Side Trips

Find places to stay Nov 3 — 8:

Himeji

— 2 nights
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.
Start off your visit on the 9th (Tue): admire the natural beauty at Koko-en, then explore the historical opulence of Himeji Castle, and then contemplate the long history of Nishi no Maru. On your second day here, admire the natural beauty at Kobe Nunobiki Herb Gardens and then wander the streets of Nankinmachi (Kobe Chinatown).

To see where to stay, other places to visit, maps, and more tourist information, read Himeji visit website.

Traveling by train from Hiroshima to Himeji takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and train. In November, daytime highs in Himeji are 62°F, while nighttime lows are 52°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 10th (Wed) so you can take a train to Kyoto.

Things to do in Himeji

Historic Sites · Parks · Shopping · Neighborhoods

Side Trip

Find places to stay Nov 8 — 10:

Kyoto

— 8 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 find plenty of places to visit near Kyoto: Dotombori District (in Dotombori) and Osaka (Osaka Shiritsu Toyo Toji Museum & Universal Studios Japan). There's still lots to do: contemplate the long history of Kiyomizu-dera Temple, take in the spiritual surroundings of Ryoanji Temple, explore the historical opulence of Nijo Castle, and wander the streets of Gion.

To find ratings, other places to visit, photos, and tourist information, go to the Kyoto online travel route planner.

You can take a train from Himeji to Kyoto in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive. Expect a daytime high around 62°F in November, and nighttime lows around 48°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 18th (Thu) so you can fly back home.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites · Neighborhoods · Shopping · Theme Parks

Side Trip

Find places to stay Nov 10 — 18:

Japan travel guide

4.3
Sacred & Religious Sites · Landmarks · Historic Sites
Land of the Rising Sun
Part of a volcanic archipelago that encompasses over 6,800 islands, Japan remains one of Asia's most fascinating tourist destinations, where a blend of modernity and tradition creates a look and feel completely different from any other place in the world. A tour of Japan lets you discover big cities filled with ancient temples and innovative skyscrapers, as well as quiet country landscapes dotted with castles, perfectly manicured gardens, cherry orchards, and primeval forests seemingly untouched by the hand of mass tourism. Many tourists on vacation in Japan devote lots of time to the country's unique cuisine, prepared with painstaking attention to detail and a genius for simple yet effective presentation.