questions & answers: general japan travel

12 day travel recommendations

12 Day Travel Recommendations

Hello all,

I am planning to travel to Japan with my mother for a 12 day trip at the end of march 2014
She is giving me this as a highschool graduation present but we will be going on a very tight budget.

We are going to buy a 7 day JR Pass.

Some of the places I want to visit are:
Tokyo (Asakusa, Mt. Fuji, Tokyo Skytree, Ueno Zoo, Ghibli Museum , Kamakura)
Kusatsu Onsen (the hot springs of course and Sainokawara Park)
Nagoya (Science Museum, Nagoya Castle, Sakae and Atsuta Shrine)
Kyoto (Kiyomizudera, Gion, Philosopher's path or Maruyama Park, Kyoto Aquarium)
Osaka (Dotonbory arcade, Osaka Castle
Nara (Kasuga Taisha, Horyuji Temple)

I would be very grateful if I could get recommendations about the order in which I should visit the different places or if I'm leaving out something we shouldn't miss.

Also, any tips about modest cost hotels will be greatly appreciated.



Hi there!

Kyoto, Nara and Osaka are all located closely to each other and the order in which you visit them does not matter. Most people visit Nara as a day trip and either stay in Osaka or Kyoto and visit the other city from there. Nagoya is direclely on the route between Tokyo - Kyoto/Osaka so you can make a stop there either before you go to Kyoto or on the way back to Tokyo.

As for Kusatsu, I think that you could best visit it as a day trip from Tokyo as it is to the north and all other places you wish to visit are more to the south of Tokyo.

For budget accommodation I would recommend looking into hostels, they are generally very clean and well maintained in Japan and it's a good way to save money on accommodations. Hostelworld offers a nice selection of hostels all throughout Japan and you can find a list of official youth hostels here.

I hope this helps!


I would recommend you buy suica+NEX pkg round trip at Narita to use at the beginning and end of your trip and plan to use your 7 day pass in the middle of the trip.

You have enough time till March to plan out your trip.

Have fun!!!


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