Where should I go for my first time in Japan?
Japan is a country with a unique blend of ancient traditions and modern technology. It has endless sights to explore, making it difficult to decide what to do and where to go. If it’s your first time going to Japan, consider visiting these top destinations:
The bustling capital of Japan, Tokyo, is the perfect place to immerse yourself in Japanese culture. Visit the iconic Tokyo Tower for a panoramic view of the city and make sure to experience the famous Shibuya Crossing. You can also explore traditional neighborhoods like Asakusa, where you can see the Sensoji Temple and Nakamise-dori shopping street.
Kyoto is known as the cultural capital of Japan, with over 2,000 temples and shrines. The city is home to some of Japan’s most famous landmarks, such as Kiyomizu-dera Temple and Fushimi Inari Shrine. Don’t forget to try traditional Kyoto cuisine like Kaiseki Ryori, a multi-course meal featuring seasonal ingredients.
Osaka is an exciting city with a vibrant food scene. Known as “Japan’s kitchen,” Osaka is famous for its street food like takoyaki and okonomiyaki. Visit Osaka Castle for a glimpse into the city’s history or go shopping at Shinsaibashi-suji Shopping Street.
Hiroshima is a city that has overcome tragedy and rebuilt itself into a beautiful destination. Visit the Peace Memorial Park and Museum to learn about its history. You can also take a ferry to Miyajima Island to see the famous Itsukushima Shrine and its floating torii gate.
Nara is a small city known for its friendly deer that roam freely in the streets. It’s also home to some of Japan’s oldest and largest temples, like Todai-ji Temple and Kasuga-taisha Shrine. Don’t forget to try Nara’s famous dish, kakinoha-zushi, which is sushi wrapped in persimmon leaves.
Hokkaido is Japan’s northernmost island, known for its beautiful nature and fresh seafood. Visit Sapporo, the capital city, to try Hokkaido’s famous ramen and beer. You can also go hiking in Daisetsuzan National Park or skiing in Niseko.
Okinawa is a tropical island chain located south of mainland Japan. It has a unique culture and history influenced by China and Southeast Asia. Visit Shuri Castle, a UNESCO World Heritage site, or go snorkeling in the clear waters of Kerama Islands.
Hakone is a popular destination for those looking to escape the city and relax in nature. It’s located near Mount Fuji and is known for its hot springs and scenic views. Take a ride on the Hakone Tozan Railway or visit the Open-Air Museum for some art and culture.
Takayama is a small town located in the Japanese Alps, known for its preserved Edo-period streets and traditional houses. Visit the Hida Folk Village to learn about local culture or taste some sake at one of Takayama’s breweries.
Kamakura is a coastal town located south of Tokyo, known for its numerous temples and shrines. Visit the Great Buddha at Kotoku-in Temple or hike to the top of Mount Takao for a panoramic view of the area.
11. Mount Fuji
Mt. Fuji is Japan’s highest mountain and a UNESCO World Heritage site. It’s a popular destination for hiking and climbing, with trails open from July to September. You can also take a day trip from Tokyo to see the mountain from afar.
12. Tokyo Disney Resort
If you’re traveling with children or just love Disney, consider visiting Tokyo Disney Resort. It’s home to two theme parks, Disneyland and DisneySea, as well as shopping and dining options. Make sure to try unique Japanese snacks like green tea popcorn while you’re there.
How long should I visit Japan for the first time?
For those visiting Japan for the first time, a recommended time frame is between 7 to 10 days. While it may not allow for a complete tour of the entire country, it is sufficient to experience the most noteworthy attractions and destinations.
How many days in Japan is enough?
What is the ideal length of time for a trip to Japan? We suggest spending at least 2 weeks to fully explore the different parts of the Japanese archipelago, including Tokyo, Kyoto, and their surrounding areas. To do this, we recommend spending a minimum of 6 nights in both Tokyo and the Kyoto region.
Should I go to Osaka or Tokyo?
If you are looking to be in the center of everything, Tokyo may be the ideal location for you. However, if you prefer a more affordable cost of living and more approachable locals, Osaka could be the better option. Each city has its own distinctive features and living in either one can be a wonderful experience.
What is the first thing to do when you go to Japan?
When visiting Japan, it’s important to obtain a public transit smart card at a subway or train station as one of the first things to do. These rechargeable cards are essential for public transportation and can also be used for purchases at vending machines, shops, and restaurants. Additionally, they are accepted as a form of payment for taxis and even the Shinkansen.
What is the best month to go to Japan?
The ideal seasons to travel to Japan are spring (March to May) and fall (September to November). These times of year are particularly lively, with beautiful cherry blossoms and colorful autumn foliage adding to the scenery. However, it’s important to keep in mind that these seasons can also be crowded.
Do they speak English in Japan?
Is English Spoken in Japan? While Japanese is the primary language spoken in Japan, research indicates that approximately 13-30% of Japanese individuals also have some ability to speak English, but only around 9% report feeling confident using the language.
Nikko is a small town located in Tochigi Prefecture, known for its stunning natural beauty and historic shrines and temples. The most famous attraction is the Toshogu Shrine, a UNESCO World Heritage site and the final resting place of Tokugawa Ieyasu, the founder of the Tokugawa shogunate. Visitors can also hike through the beautiful Nikko National Park.
Located just south of Tokyo, Yokohama is Japan’s second-largest city and a major port town. The city is known for its international vibe, with a mix of Japanese and Western architecture. Visit the Landmark Tower for a panoramic view of the city or stroll through the historic Yamate district.
Aomori is a prefecture located in the northern part of Honshu, Japan’s main island. The region is known for its unique festivals and traditions, including the Nebuta Festival where giant illuminated floats parade through the streets. Visitors can also enjoy local delicacies like fresh seafood and apples.
The Ise-Shima region, located in Mie Prefecture, is known for its sacred Shinto shrines and beautiful coastline. The most famous shrine in the area is the Ise Jingu Shrine, which is dedicated to Amaterasu, the sun goddess. Visitors can also relax on the beaches of Shima Peninsula or explore the picturesque fishing villages.
17. Kinosaki Onsen
Kinosaki Onsen is a hot spring town located on the coast of northern Hyogo Prefecture. The town has seven public hot springs that visitors can bathe in while wearing traditional yukata robes. Visitors can also enjoy the town’s historic atmosphere and try local specialties like Tajima beef and seafood.
Kanazawa is a city located on the west coast of Honshu, known for its traditional crafts and beautiful gardens. Visitors can explore the Kenrokuen Garden, one of Japan’s most famous gardens, or visit the Higashi Chaya District to see traditional teahouses. The city is also known for its gold leaf production and visitors can try gold leaf ice cream or buy gold leaf souvenirs.
19. Sado Island
Sado Island is a remote island located off the coast of Niigata Prefecture. The island is known for its traditional taiko drumming and was once a place of banishment for political prisoners. Visitors can explore the island’s rugged coastline and visit historic sites like the Sado Gold Mine.
Matsushima is a scenic bay located in Miyagi Prefecture, known for its picturesque islands and pine trees. Visitors can take a boat tour of the bay or hike to one of the many viewpoints for stunning panoramic views. The area is also known for its fresh seafood, including oysters and scallops.