questions & answers: itinerary check

first timers to japan

First timers to Japan

We are heading over to Japan for the first time in April and as this is a busy time we are wanting to finalise our itinerary to start booking accommodation. We don't like shopping and prefer spending our days sightseeing, walking around and sampling local cuisine. We are interested in the 'old' japan, and don't want to spend too much time in the bigger cities.

We will have a 14 day JR pass. Is the below itinerary too ambitious? Would you suggest spending less time or longer time in some places?

10th - arrive in Tokyo at 6pm - stay close to airport
11th - early start. Activate 14 day pass and travel into Shinjuku.
12th - Tokyo
13th - day trip to see Mt Fuji
14th - Shinjuku to Kanazawa. Early start
15th - Kanazawa
16th - Kanazawa to Shirakawa-Go to Takayama
17th - Takayama
18th - Takayama to Kyoto. Early start
19th - Kyoto
20th - Kyoto
21st - Kyoto day trip to Arashiyama
22nd - early start. Kyoto to Hiroshima to Osaka (late afternoon)
23rd - Osaka
24th - Osaka to Narita airport 8pm flight

I am debating on the Osaka part of the trip. Friends recommended it as they enjoyed it better than Tokyo, but as we are not really that interested in modern cities maybe we should extend our time somewhere else?

Thank you for your input!


Hello there,

It is an interesting itinerary and I certainly don't think it is too ambitious. Also like the idea of at least spending two nights in both Kanazawa and Takayama.

As for Osaka, I do think it is a great experience to add in. The atmosphere found around Namba/Shinsai-bashi and Dotonbori is unique and not found anywhere else. You can always make it a day trip to Nara instead if you do not like Osaka.

The rest looks very good!

Expert button 2

Thanks for your reply Daniel. I think you've sold me on Osaka, will definitely go there and see what it's like. I thought we could always break our final day up a bit and head back to Tokyo for a couple of hours before we make our way to the airport. It's a long day to fill in otherwise


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