12 days in Japan Itinerary

12 days in Japan Itinerary

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Route & dates

12 days in Japan Itinerary

Start: Singapore
Fly + Train:  10​h
1
Nagoya
— 1 night
Train:  45​min
2
Kyoto
— 4 nights
Train:  45​min
3
Nara
— 2 nights
Train:  45​min
4
Osaka
— 4 nights
Fly:  10​h
End: Singapore

1
night
Nagoya

Nagoya ©
Known nationally as an industrial heartland, Nagoya boasts a far more cosmopolitan and cultural core than its reputation would lead you to believe.
Start off your visit on the 1st (Wed): contemplate the long history of Nagoya Castle, see the interesting displays at Toyota Commemorative Museum of Industry and Technology, then contemplate the long history of Nagoya Higashiyamaso, and finally get up close and personal with brilliant marine life at Port of Nagoya Public Aquarium.

To find photos, ratings, where to stay, and other tourist information, you can read our Nagoya trip app .

Singapore, Singapore to Nagoya is an approximately 10-hour combination of flight and train. You can also fly; or do a combination of car and ferry. You'll lose 1 hour traveling from Singapore to Nagoya due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Singapore in March, things will get cooler in Nagoya: highs are around 13°C and lows about 7°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 1st (Wed) early enough to take a train to Kyoto.

Things to do in Nagoya

Parks Zoos & Aquariums Historic Sites
Find places to stay Mar 31 — Apr 1:
Highlights from your plan
Port of Nagoya Public Aquarium ©
Port of Nagoya Public Aquarium
Nagoya Castle ©
Nagoya Castle

4
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.
Change things up with a short trip to Takenomichi in Muko (about 30 minutes away). There's much more to do: take in the spiritual surroundings of Kiyomizu-dera Temple, wander the streets of Gion, contemplate the long history of Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine, and take in the pleasant sights at Arashiyama.

For maps, more things to do, where to stay, and more tourist information, read our Kyoto road trip planner .

You can take a train from Nagoya to Kyoto in an hour. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Traveling from Nagoya in April, expect nights in Kyoto to be about the same, around 11°C, while days are somewhat warmer, around 22°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 5th (Sun) so you can take a train to Nara.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Neighborhoods Shopping

Side Trip

Takenomichi
Find places to stay Apr 1 — 5:
Highlights from your plan
Kiyomizu-dera Temple ©
Kiyomizu-dera Temple
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine ©
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine
Nijo Castle ©
Nijo Castle

2
nights
Nara

Nara ©
The country's first established capital, Nara houses some of the most storied buildings and natural attractions in Japan, with eight World Heritage Sites in total.
Start off your visit on the 6th (Mon): take in the spiritual surroundings of Kasuga Grand Shrine, identify plant and animal life at Nara Park, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Kofuku-ji Temple, then pause for some photo ops at Todai-ji Temple, and finally see the interesting displays at Todaiji Temple Cultural Center. Here are some ideas for day two: contemplate the waterfront views at Saho River, then explore the historical opulence of Nara Palace Site Historical Park, and then take in the spiritual surroundings of Hase-dera Temple.

For more things to do, ratings, where to stay, and tourist information, use the Nara day trip site .

Traveling by train from Kyoto to Nara takes an hour. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of subway and train. Traveling from Kyoto in April, you can expect nighttime temperatures to be somewhat warmer in Nara, with lows of 15°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 7th (Tue) to allow time to take a train to Osaka.

Things to do in Nara

Historic Sites Parks Wildlife

Side Trip

Hase-dera Temple
Find places to stay Apr 5 — 7:
Highlights from your plan
Todai-ji Temple ©
Todai-ji Temple
Nara Park ©
Nara Park
Kasuga Grand Shrine ©
Kasuga Grand Shrine

4
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'll find plenty of places to visit near Osaka: Himeji (Koko-en & Himeji Castle), Koyasan Okunoin (in Koya-cho) and Gyoja no Taki (in Izumisano). There's lots more to do: get in on the family fun at Universal Studios Japan, enjoy breathtaking views from Kuchu Teien Observatory, don't miss a visit to Kuromon Market, and explore the historical opulence of Osaka Castle.

To see more things to do, where to stay, photos, and more tourist information, refer to the Osaka trip itinerary planner .

Traveling by train from Nara to Osaka takes an hour. Alternatively, you can drive. Traveling from Nara in April, Osaka is a bit cooler at night with lows of 12°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 11th (Sat) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Osaka

Theme Parks Historic Sites Parks

Side Trips

Himeji, Gyoja no Taki, Koyasan Okunoin
Find places to stay Apr 7 — 11:
Highlights from your plan
Sunset Owl Cafe ©
Sunset Owl Cafe
Universal Studios Japan ©
Universal Studios Japan
Himeji Castle ©
Himeji Castle

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