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, Nankinmachi (Kobe Chinatown), Nishinomiya Shrine
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.
Give yourself a bit of retail therapy at Nishiki Market Shopping District and Kyoto Station Building. Do some cultural sightseeing at Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine and Sanjusangendo Temple. Explore Kyoto's surroundings by going to Nagoya Castle (in Nagoya), Todai-ji Temple (in Nara) and Ise Grand Shrine (in Ise). There's lots more to do: take in the spiritual surroundings of Kiyomizu-dera Temple, identify plant and animal life at Yase Momiji no Komichi, step into the grandiose world of Nijo Castle, and don't miss a visit to Arashiyama.

For photos, ratings, other places to visit, and more tourist information, refer to the Kyoto journey planning tool.

Kyoto is very close to Osaka. In December, daily temperatures in Kyoto can reach 13°C, while at night they dip to 4°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 31st (Tue) early enough to take a train to Tokyo.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Shopping Neighborhoods

Side Trips

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

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.
Do some cultural sightseeing at Odaiba and Asakusa. Head to Ginza and Takeshita Streetfor some retail therapy. There's much more to do: take in the spiritual surroundings of Senso-ji Temple, make a trip to Meiji Jingu Shrine, visit Akihabara, and have some family-friendly fun at Owl cafe Akiba Fukurou.

To find maps, ratings, and other tourist information, read our Tokyo itinerary planning tool.

Traveling by train from Kyoto to Tokyo takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or drive. In December in Tokyo, expect temperatures between 14°C during the day and 4°C at night. 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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