18 days in Japan Itinerary

18 days in Japan Itinerary

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Route & dates

18 days in Japan Itinerary

Start: Singapore
Fly:  9​h 45​min
1
Osaka
— 5 nights
train:  30​min
2
Kyoto
— 7 nights
train:  2​h 45​min
3
Tokyo
— 4 nights
Fly:  10​h 15​min
End: Singapore

5
nights
Osaka

Osaka ©
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.
You've now added Sunset Owl Cafe to your itinerary. Do some cultural sightseeing at Dotonbori and Nara Park. For shopping fun, head to Shinsaibashi-suji Shopping Street or Nankinmachi (Kobe Chinatown). Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Osaka: Nara (Todaiji Temple Cultural Center, Rokuen, & more). The adventure continues: explore the historical opulence of Osaka Castle, meet the residents at Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Senko-ji Temple, and take in the exciting artwork at Daimaru Museum Umeda.

Before you visit Osaka, use our trip planner to discover what you can do and see there.

Singapore, Singapore to Osaka is an approximately 10-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and train; or do a combination of flight, bus, and train. Traveling from Singapore to Osaka, you'll lose 1 hour due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Singapore in December, things will get much colder in Osaka: highs are around 13°C and lows about 4°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 24th (Tue) to allow time to take a train to Kyoto.

Things to do in Osaka

Shopping Neighborhoods Theme Parks

Side Trips

Nara, Nishinomiya Shrine, Nankinmachi (Kobe Chinatown)
Find places to stay Dec 19 — 24:
Highlights from your plan
Nara Park ©
Nara Park
Dotonbori ©
Dotonbori
Osaka Castle ©
Osaka Castle

7
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.
Head to Nishiki Market Shopping District and Nowakifor plenty of shopping. Get a sense of the local culture at Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine and Kinkaku-ji. Get out of town with these interesting Kyoto side-trips: Todai-ji Temple (in Nara), Nagoya Castle (in Nagoya) and Ise Grand Shrine (in Ise). The adventure continues: steep yourself in history at Kiyomizu-dera Temple, admire the striking features of Kyoto Station Building, wander the streets of Gion, and stop by Maiko Antiques Kyoto.

For reviews, more things to do, traveler tips, and more tourist information, read our Kyoto day trip planning website .

Kyoto is just a short distance from Osaka. In December, plan for daily highs up to 13°C, and evening lows to 4°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 31st (Tue) so you can catch the train to Tokyo.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Shopping Neighborhoods

Side Trips

Todai-ji Temple, Nagoya Castle, Ise Grand Shrine
Find places to stay Dec 24 — 31:
Highlights from your plan
Gion
Gion
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine ©
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine
Kiyomizu-dera Temple ©
Kiyomizu-dera Temple

4
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.
Shop till you drop at Ginza and Asakusa. Your cultural itinerary includes sights like Odaiba and Senso-ji Temple. There's lots more to do: wander the streets of Takeshita Street, have some family-friendly fun at Owl cafe Akiba Fukurou, and don't miss a visit to Meiji Jingu Shrine.

To find where to stay, more things to do, and more tourist information, refer to the Tokyo road trip planner.

Take a train from Kyoto to Tokyo in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or drive. In December, daily temperatures in Tokyo can reach 14°C, while at night they dip to 4°C. On the 4th (Sat), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Tokyo

Neighborhoods Shopping Historic Sites
Find places to stay Dec 31 — Jan 4:
Highlights from your plan
Odaiba ©
Odaiba
Senso-ji Temple ©
Senso-ji Temple
Ginza ©
Ginza

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