56 days in East Asia Itinerary

56 days in East Asia Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Japan trip planner

Make it your trip
Fly
1
Sapporo
— 5 nights
Fly to Sendai Airport, Drive to Hiraizumi-cho
2
Hiraizumi-cho
— 1 night
+2
Drive to Sendai Airport, Fly to Komatsu Airport / JASDF Komatsu Air Base, Drive to Kanazawa
3
Kanazawa
— 6 nights
Drive
4
Nagoya
— 6 nights
Train
5
Kyoto
— 8 nights
Drive
6
Osaka
— 4 nights
Train
7
Hiroshima
— 5 nights
Train
8
Fukuoka
— 7 nights
Fly
9
Kochi
— 4 nights
Fly
10
Tokyo
— 8 nights
Fly

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Sapporo

— 5 nights

CIty of Ramen

A modern, bustling city known for its beer brewery, Sapporo attracts millions of visitors with its Snow Festival, during which elaborate ice and snow sculptures are exhibited all over town.
Step out of the city life by going to Niseko Hanazono Resort and Niseko Annupuri International Ski Area. Let the collections at Royce' Chocolate World and The Hokkaido University Museum capture your imagination. Get out of town with these interesting Sapporo side-trips: Niseko Outdoor Center (in Niseko-cho), Nikka Whisky Yoichi Distillery (in Yoichi-cho) and Nidom Classic Course (in Tomakomai). There's much more to do: hit the slopes at Okurayama Lookout, contemplate the long history of Hokkaido Jingu, make a trip to Sapporo Clock Tower, and get a sense of history and politics at Former Hokkaido Government Office Building.

To find ratings, photos, other places to visit, and other tourist information, use the Sapporo trip itinerary app.

San Francisco, USA to Sapporo is an approximately 17.5-hour flight. The time zone changes from Pacific Standard Time (PST) to Japan Standard Time (JST), which is usually a 17 hour difference. When traveling from San Francisco in April, plan for much colder days and slightly colder nights in Sapporo: temperatures range from 47°F by day to 43°F at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 6th (Tue) to allow time to travel to Hiraizumi-cho.

Things to do in Sapporo

Parks · Outdoors · Winter Sports · Nature

Side Trips

Find places to stay Apr 1 — 6:

Hiraizumi-cho

— 1 night
Start off your visit on the 7th (Wed): take in the spiritual surroundings of Takkoku no Iwaya, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Chuson-ji Konjiki-do, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Chuson-ji Temple, and finally contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Motsu-ji Temple.

For reviews, other places to visit, and more tourist information, you can read our Hiraizumi-cho trip itinerary planning site.

Use the Route module to find suitable travel options from Sapporo to Hiraizumi-cho. Traveling from Sapporo in April, expect nights in Hiraizumi-cho to be about the same, around 46°F, while days are a bit warmer, around 59°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 7th (Wed) early enough to travel to Kanazawa.

Things to do in Hiraizumi-cho

Historic Sites
Find places to stay Apr 6 — 7:

Kanazawa

— 6 nights
An old castle town largely unspoiled during World War II, Kanazawa features well-preserved architecture spread across a range of districts.
Shirakawago Gassho Zukuri Minkaen and Fukui Prefectural Dinosaur Museum will appeal to museum buffs. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Ogimachi Castle Old Site Observatory and D. T. Suzuki Museum. Get out of town with these interesting Kanazawa side-trips: Daihonzan Eihei-ji Temple (in Eiheiji-cho), Shirakawa-mura (The Historic Villages of Shirakawa-go Gassho Style Houses, Wada House, &more) and Maruoka Castle (in Sakai). There's still lots to do: see the interesting displays at Takayama Showa Museum, cruise along Chirihama Nagisa Driveway, stop by Gokayama, and steep yourself in history at Nomura Family Samurai House.

For reviews, maps, photos, and other tourist information, use the Kanazawa trip itinerary tool.

The Route module can help you plan travel from Hiraizumi-cho to Kanazawa. In April, daytime highs in Kanazawa are 63°F, while nighttime lows are 45°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 13th (Tue) early enough to go by car to Nagoya.

Things to do in Kanazawa

Historic Sites · Museums · Parks · Neighborhoods

Side Trips

Find places to stay Apr 7 — 13:

Nagoya

— 6 nights
Known nationally as an industrial heartland, Nagoya boasts a far more cosmopolitan and cultural core than its reputation would lead you to believe.
Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Toyota Commemorative Museum of Industry and Technology and Ise Shrine Geku. Do some cultural sightseeing at Hikone Castle and Futami Okitama Shrine. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Nagoya: Nakatsugawa (Nakasendo Magome-juku & Nakatsugawa Mineral Museum), Ise (Sarutahiko Shrine, Oharai-machi, &more) and Nakasendo Tsumagojuku (in Nagiso-machi). Next up on the itinerary: see the interesting displays at SCMAGLEV and Railway Park, explore the historical opulence of Seinan Sumiyagura, take in the spiritual surroundings of Atsuta Jingu Shrine, and engage your brain at Nagoya City Science Museum.

To see where to stay, photos, and more tourist information, refer to the Nagoya driving holiday planner.

You can drive from Kanazawa to Nagoya in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or take a bus. Traveling from Kanazawa in April, Nagoya is a bit warmer at night with lows of 53°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 19th (Mon) early enough to catch the train to Kyoto.

Things to do in Nagoya

Historic Sites · Museums · Parks · Outdoors

Side Trips

Find places to stay Apr 13 — 19:

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.
Visit Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine and Kiyomizu-dera Temple for their historical value. Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Kinkaku-ji and Eikando Zenrinji Temple. Change things up with these side-trips from Kyoto: Todai-ji Temple (in Nara) and Jindoji Temple (in Kizugawa). Next up on the itinerary: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Kennin-ji Temple, stop by Pontocho District, take some stellar pictures from Sagano, and don't miss a visit to Nijo Castle.

For where to stay, reviews, photos, and tourist information, go to the Kyoto trip itinerary planning tool.

Traveling by train from Nagoya to Kyoto takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. While traveling from Nagoya, expect somewhat warmer days and about the same nights in Kyoto, ranging from highs of 67°F to lows of 50°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 27th (Tue) to allow time to drive to Osaka.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites · Neighborhoods · Parks · Shopping

Side Trips

Find places to stay Apr 19 — 27:

Osaka

— 4 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.
Your inner history buff will appreciate Nigatsu-do Temple and Izanagi Shrine. Discover out-of-the-way places like Otsuka Museum of Art and Kasuga Grand Shrine. Venture out of the city with trips to Himeji (Koko-en & Himeji Castle), Nara (Kofuku-ji Temple & Nara Park) and Akamon Oneribei (in Nishinomiya). There's much more to do: step into the grandiose world of Osaka Castle, meet the residents at Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan, and wander the streets of Dotombori District.

To find other places to visit, maps, ratings, and tourist information, go to the Osaka day trip tool.

Traveling by car from Kyoto to Osaka takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or take a bus. In April, plan for daily highs up to 68°F, and evening lows to 51°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 1st (Sat) to allow time to travel to Hiroshima.

Things to do in Osaka

Historic Sites · Parks · Museums · Wildlife

Side Trips

Find places to stay Apr 27 — May 1:

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 some historical perspective at Daishoin Temple and Peace Memorial Park - Hiroshima. Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Yamato Museum and Senjokaku. Change things up with these side-trips from Hiroshima: Kintaikyo Bridge (in Iwakuni), Itsukushima Shrine (in Hatsukaichi) and JMSDF Kure Museum (in Kure). Next up on the itinerary: take in the spiritual surroundings of Mitaki Temple, explore the historical opulence of Hiroshima Castle, walk around Momijidani Park, and contemplate the long history of Atomic Bomb Dome.

Plan my trip to Hiroshima with suggested itineraries provided by Inspirock.

Traveling by train from Osaka to Hiroshima takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of flight and train. Expect a daytime high around 75°F in May, and nighttime lows around 60°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 6th (Thu) to allow time to take a train to Fukuoka.

Things to do in Hiroshima

Historic Sites · Museums · Parks

Side Trips

Find places to stay May 1 — 6:

Fukuoka

— 7 nights

City of Yatai

The largest city on the island, Fukuoka formed through the merger of two former cities that had grown up either side of the Naka River.
Get some cultural insight at Nanzoin and Tochoji Temple. Museum-lovers will appreciate Kyushu Railway History Museum and Fukuoka City Museum. Change things up with these side-trips from Fukuoka: Nagoya Castle Ruins (in Karatsu), Hompuku-ji Temple (in Kiyama-cho) and Dazaifu (Komyozen-ji Temple, Dazaifu Tenman-gu, &more). There's much more to do: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Kushida Shrine, take an in-depth tour of Munakata Shrine, step into the grandiose world of Kumamoto Castle, and admire the landmark architecture of Hakata Station.

For where to stay, other places to visit, maps, and other tourist information, go to the Fukuoka online journey planner.

Traveling by train from Hiroshima to Fukuoka takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In May, daily temperatures in Fukuoka can reach 76°F, while at night they dip to 60°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 13th (Thu) to allow enough time to travel to Kochi.

Things to do in Fukuoka

Historic Sites · Museums · Parks · Classes

Side Trips

Find places to stay May 6 — 13:

Kochi

— 4 nights
The port city of Kochi has a rich and varied history that has left its mark on the look and feel of the urban area.
Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Kotohira-gu and Kochi Castle. Get some historical perspective at Zentsu-ji Temple and Old Samurai Residence of Rojyu Doi. Get out of town with these interesting Kochi side-trips: Izutama Shrine (in Kotohira-cho), Ryoma History Museam (in Konan) and Kami City Takashi Yanase Memorial Museum Anpanman Museum (in Kami). There's lots more to do: take in the spiritual surroundings of Chikurinji Temple, hunt for treasures at Sunday Market, kick back and relax at Katsura Hama, and take in nature's colorful creations at The Kochi Prefectural Makino Botanical Garden.

To see reviews, traveler tips, where to stay, and other tourist information, you can read our Kochi trip planner.

You can fly from Fukuoka to Kochi in 3 hours. Other options are to take a train; or drive. In May in Kochi, expect temperatures between 73°F during the day and 61°F at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 17th (Mon) so you can travel to Tokyo.

Things to do in Kochi

Historic Sites · Parks · Museums · Childrens Museums

Side Trips

Find places to stay May 13 — 17:

Tokyo

— 8 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.
Popular historic sites such as Naritasan Shinsho-ji Temple and Asakusa Shrine are in your itinerary. Do some cultural sightseeing at Hase-dera Temple and Tokyo National Museum. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Tokyo: Naritasan Omote Sando (in Narita) and Kōtoku-in (in Kamakura). There's lots more to do: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Zojo-ji Temple, examine the collection at Samurai Museum, steep yourself in history at Hie Jinjya, and indulge in some personalized pampering at Waho-An NATURE Tokyo.

To find more things to do, ratings, traveler tips, and tourist information, go to the Tokyo visit planning app.

Traveling by flight from Kochi to Tokyo takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or drive. May in Tokyo sees daily highs of 76°F and lows of 61°F at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 25th (Tue) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Tokyo

Historic Sites · Neighborhoods · Museums · Parks

Side Trips

Find places to stay May 17 — 25:

Hokkaido travel guide

4
Bodies of Water · Landmarks · Parks
The northernmost of Japan's big four islands, Hokkaido seems a world apart from the rest of the country, with nearly a quarter of its total land area and only five percent of the population. To the Japanese, this island is synonymous with photogenic mountains and abundant wildlife. To most foreign visitors, a vacation in Hokkaido means exploring an area reminiscent of northern Europe, abundant in waterfalls, hot springs, volcanoes, mossy canyons, and peaceful lakes. Hokkaido also boasts the world's longest railway tunnel, the only land connection between this and Japan's main island Honshu.

Tohoku travel guide

4.1
Sacred & Religious Sites · Landmarks · Historic Sites
Long a poor rural area known for its harsh climate, Tohoku remained off the tourist radar for most of modern Japanese history. Today, tourism in Tohoku remains refreshingly subdued, offering the chance to discover some of the country's finest natural scenery without the crowds. The area encompasses many scenic hot springs, developed ski areas, picturesque lakes, and historic castles and former samurai residences. Tohoku also serves as an ideal spot for that quintessential Japanese activity, the cherry blossom viewing: the trees bloom later here than elsewhere in the country, making the region a great alternative if you arrive a bit late in the season.

Chubu travel guide

4.2
Sacred & Religious Sites · Landmarks · Castles
In the middle of Japan's largest island, the region of Chubu remains best known for its picturesque natural scenery and numerous hot springs. The region contains the rugged Japanese Alps, which separate the country's sunny Pacific from the snowy Sea of Japan side. Thanks to this high mountain range, most vacations in Chubu include skiing in the cold months and hiking in the warmer part of the year. Don't miss a tour of Mount Fuji, Japan's enduring symbol and a hugely popular attraction, both for climbing and viewing. When you need to add some urban flair to your Chubu itinerary, the large city of Nagoya holds plenty of appeal with museums, shrines, and parks.

Kansai travel guide

4.3
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.

Chugoku travel guide

4.4
Historic Sites · Sacred & Religious Sites · History Museums
The western portion of the island of Honshu, Chugoku features two distinct seacoasts. The area along the Seto Inland Sea represents one of Japan's most industrialized and urbanized sections, while the coastline lapped by the Sea of Japan remains more rural--as well as less touristy. Both areas offer plenty of vacation ideas in Chugoku, with pilgrimages to see over 30 historic temples among the most popular things to do here. The region also contains Hiroshima, which is not only the site of the infamous atomic bombing, but also a modern urban center with a busy nightlife and a cosmopolitan atmosphere that appeals to foreign tourists.

Kyushu travel guide

3.9
Sacred & Religious Sites · Landmarks · Historic Sites
Enthusiastic shutterbugs and lovers of all things picturesque often choose to tour Kyushu-Okinawa on one of the island's epic train trips, leading through a landscape shaped by thousands of years of volcanic activity. With mild winters, warm summers, and plenty of developed beaches, the region offers a wealth of marine sports and recreation. Those with relaxation on their mind take a vacation in Kyushu-Okinawa for a chance to explore some of Japan's finest onsens, in which pristine nature meets modern amenities for an unforgettable tourist experience.

Shikoku travel guide

3.9
Landmarks · Sacred & Religious Sites · Castles
Spiritual Island
The smallest of Japan's four main islands, Shikoku remains one of the country's forgotten tourist destinations, still considered little more than a rural backwater. Despite this reputation, the island boasts numerous notable temples and outstanding hiking areas, sure to satisfy nature lovers and those looking to add a bit of culture to their visit. Shikoku tourism gets a boost from its famed "88 Temple Route," appealing to pilgrims seeking spiritual perfection, as well as pristine natural scenery of picturesque rivers and majestic mountains. Thanks to the area's rugged but easily accessible wilderness, some of the most popular things to do in Shikoku include hiking, kayaking, surfing, climbing, and sailing.

Kanto travel guide

4.3
Sacred & Religious Sites · Landmarks · Parks
Nearly synonymous with Tokyo and its suburban sprawl, the region of Kanto encompasses many historical sites, hot springs, semitropical islands, and picturesque mountains. Predictably, most tours of Kanto begin and end in Tokyo, which serves as an ideal base for day trips to nearby national parks, ancient temples, and grand monuments reminding visitors of Japan's shogun era. During feudal times, Kanto reigned as the center of political and military power; today, the area represents one of the country's tourism hubs. As you plan your Kanto itinerary, be sure to include a stop in Kamakura, a small temple town filled with notable cultural treasures.