17 days in Japan Itinerary

17 days in Japan Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Japan vacation maker

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Route & dates

Start: Melbourne
Fly:  16 h 30 min
1
Hiroshima
— 2 nights
Train:  1 h 45 min
2
Kyoto
— 2 nights
Drive:  2 h
3
Ise
— 2 nights
Drive:  3 h 45 min
4
Kanazawa
— 2 nights
Train + Bus:  2 h 45 min
5
Hakuba-mura
— 3 nights
Bus + Train:  3 h 30 min
6
Tokyo
— 3 nights
Train + Fly:  14 h 30 min
End: Melbourne

2
nights
Hiroshima

Hiroshima ©
Grapple with history and appreciate modernity in Hiroshima, a city known around the world for its tragic past and inspiring rebirth.
Kick off your visit on the 18th (Wed): see the interesting displays at Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, then steep yourself in history at Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima, and then contemplate the long history of Atomic Bomb Dome. On your second day here, enjoy the sand and surf at Mikasahama Beach, then step off the mainland to explore Miyajima, then examine the collection at JMSDF Kure Museum, and finally explore the activities along Motoyasu River.

For reviews, other places to visit, and tourist information, refer to the Hiroshima tour planning website.

Melbourne, Australia to Hiroshima is an approximately 18- hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight, bus, and ferry; or do a combination of flight, bus, and train. The time zone difference when traveling from Melbourne to Hiroshima is minus 1 hour. When traveling from Melbourne in December, plan for cooler days in Hiroshima, with highs around 13°C, while nights are slightly colder with lows around 4°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 20th (Fri) so you can catch the train to Kyoto.

Things to do in Hiroshima

Museums Historic Sites Parks

Side Trips

Hatsukaichi, JMSDF Kure Museum
Find places to stay Dec 18 — 20:
Highlights from your plan
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum ©
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
JMSDF Kure Museum ©
JMSDF Kure Museum
Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima ©
Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima

2
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.
On the 20th (Fri), contemplate the long history of Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Kiyomizu-dera Temple, and then take in the spiritual surroundings of Kennin-ji Temple. On the next day, appreciate the extensive heritage of Hieizan Enryaku-ji Temple, take in the spiritual surroundings of Shimogamo Jinja, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Toji, contemplate the long history of Tofuku-ji Temple, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Kodai-ji Temple, and finally contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Eikando Zenrinji Temple.

To see more things to do, other places to visit, traveler tips, and other tourist information, refer to the Kyoto trip itinerary maker.

Take a train from Hiroshima to Kyoto in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In December in Kyoto, expect temperatures between 13°C during the day and 4°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 22nd (Sun) so you can drive to Ise.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites

Side Trip

Hieizan Enryaku-ji Temple
Find places to stay Dec 20 — 22:
Highlights from your plan
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine ©
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine
Kiyomizu-dera Temple ©
Kiyomizu-dera Temple
Eikando Zenrinji Temple ©
Eikando Zenrinji Temple

2
nights
Ise

Ise ©
A spiritual center of Shintoism, Ise stands as a traditional city where visitors can see the roots of Japanese culture in a number of well-preserved natural and historic sites.
Start off your visit on the 22nd (Sun): get to know the fascinating history of Ise Shrine Geku, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Yamato-hime Shrine, then steep yourself in history at Hinjitsukan, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Tsukiyomi-no-miya Shrine, and finally contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Takinomiya. Keep things going the next day: indulge in Japan's hot spring tradition at some of the top local onsens, steep yourself in history at Izawanomiya, contemplate the long history of Oharai-machi, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Aramatsurinomiya, and finally contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Ise Grand Shrine.

To see where to stay, photos, other places to visit, and more tourist information, refer to the Ise online trip planner.

You can drive from Kyoto to Ise in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or do a combination of bus and train. Traveling from Kyoto in December, plan for somewhat warmer nights in Ise, with lows around 9°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 24th (Tue) so you can go by car to Kanazawa.

Things to do in Ise

Historic Sites Baths Spas

Side Trips

Takinomiya, Izawanomiya, Onsen Resorts
Find places to stay Dec 22 — 24:
Highlights from your plan
Tsukiyomi-no-miya Shrine ©
Tsukiyomi-no-miya Shrine
Oharai-machi ©
Oharai-machi
Ise Grand Shrine ©
Ise Grand Shrine

2
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 some cultural insight at Ainokura Gassho Community and Suganuma Gassho Community. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Gokayama and Toyama Glass Art Museum. Step out of Kanazawa to go to Shirakawa-mura and see The Historic Villages of Shirakawa-go Gassho Style Houses, which is approximately 1h 15 min away. There's much more to do: don't miss a visit to Kazuemachi Tea House Street, stop by Higashichaya Old Town, explore the world behind art at Kanazawa Yuwaku Yumeji-kan Museum, and steep yourself in history at Shima.

To see other places to visit, more things to do, ratings, and tourist information, refer to the Kanazawa online attractions planner.

You can drive from Ise to Kanazawa in 4 hours. Other options are to take a train; or do a combination of train and bus. Traveling from Ise in December, Kanazawa is slightly colder at night with lows of 3°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 26th (Thu) so you can travel to Hakuba-mura.

Things to do in Kanazawa

Historic Sites Museums Neighborhoods

Side Trips

Nanto, The Historic Villages of Shirakawa-go Gassho Style Houses, Toyama Glass Art Museum
Find places to stay Dec 24 — 26:
Highlights from your plan
Ainokura Gassho Community ©
Ainokura Gassho Community
Gokayama ©
Gokayama
Suganuma Gassho Community ©
Suganuma Gassho Community

3
nights
Hakuba-mura

Hakuba-mura ©
Skiing enthusiasts traveling in Japan should consider a trip to Hakuba-mura: tucked away in the Northern Alps, this village hosted several competitions during the Nagano 1998 Winter Olympics.
Your inner history buff will appreciate Zenkoji Sesonin Shakado Temple and Togakushi Jinja Hokosha. Museum-lovers will appreciate Hakuba Olympic Museum and Hakuba Saegusa Art Museum. And it doesn't end there: take a stroll through Hakuba, contemplate the waterfront views at Happo Pond, fly down the slopes at Hakuba 47 Winter Sports Park, and see the interesting displays at Hakuba Alpine Library.

To see reviews, maps, ratings, and other tourist information, use the Hakuba-mura trip itinerary planner.

Do a combination of train and bus from Kanazawa to Hakuba-mura in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a train. Traveling from Kanazawa in December, expect Hakuba-mura to be slightly colder, temps between 7°C and 0°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 29th (Sun) to allow time to travel to Tokyo.

Things to do in Hakuba-mura

Parks Outdoors Winter Sports

Side Trip

Nagano
Find places to stay Dec 26 — 29:
Highlights from your plan
Hakuba 47 Winter Sports Park ©
Hakuba 47 Winter Sports Park
Hakuba ©
Hakuba
Hakuba Snow Sports School ©
Hakuba Snow Sports School

3
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.
Museum-lovers will appreciate Kanda Myojin and Tokyo National Museum The Heiseikan. Deepen your sense of the past at sights like Samukawa Shrine and Kinomiya Shrine. Step out of Tokyo with an excursion to Oyama Afuri Shrine in Isehara--about 1h 30 min away. The adventure continues: wander the streets of Ueno District, explore the world behind art at Nezu Museum, examine the collection at Fire Museum, and steep yourself in history at Nezu Shrine.

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

Do a combination of bus and train from Hakuba-mura to Tokyo in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a train. Prepare for a bit warmer weather when traveling from Hakuba-mura in December: high temperatures in Tokyo hover around 14°C and lows are around 4°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 1st (Wed) to allow time to travel back home.

Things to do in Tokyo

Historic Sites Museums Neighborhoods

Side Trips

Oyama Afuri Shrine, Samukawa Shrine, Kinomiya Shrine
Find places to stay Dec 29 — Jan 1:
Highlights from your plan
Asakusa Shrine ©
Asakusa Shrine
Nezu Shrine ©
Nezu Shrine
Samukawa Shrine ©
Samukawa Shrine

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