Everyone ought to discover Japan no less than as soon as in their lifetime. Japan has hundreds of hidden gems and is a year-round vacation spot. You can go to its ski resorts in winter or the attractive shoreline in summer season. And, regardless of the season, Japan’s cities are at all times able to welcome you with fascinating points of interest, scrumptious road meals, and bucket a great deal of tradition.
The actual query is, which of the cities in Japan do you have to go to? In a super world, all of them. However, this information will slim it right down to the best possible cities.
Explore Japan: The Top Cities in Japan
Japan has some unimaginable cities. From Tokyo to Sapporo, these are the perfect cities in Japan in your subsequent journey. Let’s dive straight in.
When you consider cities in Japan, it’s protected to say that Tokyo shall be in your high three. As the capital, Tokyo is without doubt one of the main Japanese cities and attracts hundreds of thousands of vacationers a 12 months. It can be the biggest metropolis in Japan, with an estimated inhabitants of round 14 million folks.
Think busy streets, fast-paced leisure, and flashing neon lights – Tokyo is hectic however thrilling. Tokyo is the place to go to if you wish to be proper in the thick of all of the motion, with loads of museums to tour, purchasing to bag, and enjoyable available. The sheer dimension of town is thrilling in itself.
So, the place do you start? What are the greatest issues to do in Tokyo? Well, after visiting town just a few occasions we advise beginning with Tokyo Tower. Tokyo Tower might look acquainted, and it ought to be. The tower was closely impressed by the Eiffel Tower. In reality, the one distinction is that Tokyo Tower is 333 meters tall and purple and white.
Heading to the highest of the tower, you’ll be able to find out about Tokyo’s architectural historical past en route, ending with a spectacular view of the attractive metropolis beneath. Nearby, there’s additionally Tokyo Skytree which stands at a dizzying 634 meters and is the tallest tower in the world – so be ready to spend no less than just a few hours amongst the clouds.
To recognize Tokyo’s ambiance on the bottom, head to Golden Gai for a downtown vibe or Shibuya Crossing for a CBD expertise. Allow time to go to museums just like the Mori Art Museum, Japan Olympic Museum, and NHL Museum of Broadcasting.
Osaka is one other one among Japan’s giant cities. Osaka has a powerful character, and the port metropolis has a industrial soul with heaps occurring in any respect hours of day and evening. There’s at all times road meals to style, a bar to hop to, and points of interest to go to. Osaka is a good place to go to when you love a mix of partying, enjoyable, and sightseeing. The metropolis has numerous character and a stability of every part – like a compromise with no sacrifice.
To recognize the historical past of Osaka, a visit to Osaka Castle ought to be in your itinerary. The Sixteenth-century fortress is surrounded by cherry timber and a moat, and Osaka Castle is without doubt one of the prettiest locations to go to in town. While, if you would like a day of light-hearted enjoyable, there’s Universal Studios Japan to discover. The theme park has Hollywood-themed rides, and it’s conveniently situated simply exterior the middle of Osaka.
Finally, Osaka is the well-known dwelling of one among Japan’s oldest Shinto shrines. Sumiyoshi Taisha is a well-liked Shinto shrine to go to – on tourism or non secular grounds. We advocate visiting to totally expertise Japan’s lovely non secular tradition.
Tokyo may be the capital right now, however Kyoto was as soon as the nation’s capital. In the middle of the Kansai area, Kyoto is one among Japan’s most conventional cities. In Kyoto, you’ll discover traditional darkish wooden homes and loads of Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines. If you might be chasing tradition and custom, Kyoto is a good place to discover in Japan.
To expertise the standard streets lined by picket homes, head to Gion. You can wander in the early morning for the quietest streets or at evening to see the cobbled roads lit by paper lanterns. Visiting the numerous temples of Kyoto can be a must-do in your journey, particularly the Golden Pavilion. You can admire the Golden Pavilion from throughout its pond, being wowed by the golden tint that provides it its title and recognition.
Looking for picturesque scenes? Head to the bamboo forest of Arashiyama or the purple columned walkways of the Fushimi Inari-Taisha Shrine. Kyoto is stuffed with gorgeous surroundings and eye-opening cultural points of interest. You can learn extra in our guides on the greatest locations and issues to do in Kyoto.
Hiroshima is a reputation not many neglect. Sadly, the rationale behind Hiroshima being one of the crucial well-known cities in Japan is the atomic bombing that occurred in 1945. The US dropped an atomic bomb on the massive metropolis, inflicting over 100,000 casualties. Visitors to town can now pay their respects to the victims and destruction at many memorable points of interest, together with the Peace Park.
There is far to understand about Hiroshima in its personal proper, although. Food lovers ought to pattern the Japanese pancake, nicknamed Hiroshima-style okonomiyaki. There’s additionally Hiroshima Castle to tour and Shukkei-en scenic backyard to walk. Hiroshima’s tradition and historical past haven’t been tainted by the tragic atomic bomb, and also you’ll love town’s number of points of interest.
Nagoya is thought for manufacturing and delivery and is the capital of the Aichi Prefecture. Have you heard of Honda? Toyota? Mitsubishi? All of those huge automotive manufacturers had been developed in Nagoya. Nagoya has an modern, industrial ambiance, excellent for these desirous to expertise the enterprise facet of Japan.
Visitors ought to tour the Toyota Exhibition Hall to get a greater concept of automotive manufacturing in Japan. Nagoya Castle is nice for a historic introduction to Nagoya. There are additionally one-off occasions in Nagoya just like the Nagoya Sumo Tournament in July, the Nagoya Matsuri pageant in October, and the World Cosplay Summit in July and August.
Nagoya has heaps occurring, so don’t neglect to examine town’s schedule. And, in your downtime, be certain that to attempt some miso katsu – miso katsu is a regional specialty.
Looking to go to the actual facet of Japan? Saitama is a primarily residential metropolis, excellent for getting a quieter expertise of Japan. One of the perfect methods to expertise a rustic is by escaping its most important vacationer areas. If you favor this model of journey, Saitama is the place for you. Many residents use Saitama as a commuter city, touring to Tokyo for work in the course of the week.
So, what’s there to see in Saitama? Hitsujiiyama Park is a beautiful place to go to and is famed for its carpet-like development of pink moss. For those that like tasting classes, you can even take a sake tour across the metropolis – sampling the standard Japanese alcohol. Saitama is a phenomenal place to go to, not too distant from the opposite main cities however far sufficient away to flee the fixed buzz.
Another of the foremost cities in Japan is Fukuoka. Fukuoka is legendary for its lovely islands and sits on the shoreline, surrounded by attractive seashores excellent for a summer season getaway. The port metropolis is situated in Fukuoka Prefecture. The prefecture capital is common amongst younger professionals, college students, and companies.
The metropolis’s most important points of interest are Fukuoka Castle, Kyushu National Museum, and Dazaifu Tenman-gu, a shrine to the god of schooling. Fukuoka is a particular metropolis. If you’re keen on an thrilling metropolis ambiance filled with motion, daring delicacies, and leisure, Fukuoka is ideal. It lacks the historical past of Kyoto and the recognition of Tokyo. Still, if you would like a enjoyable ‘second city’, you’ll have a incredible time.
Nara is most well-known for its deer inhabitants. If you’ve seen footage of Nara on-line, chances are high you’ve seen the idyllic temple scenes. The temples are surrounded by inexperienced area and Bambi-look-a-likes – cute, we all know. Like Kyoto, Nara was additionally as soon as a capital metropolis. However, now, Nara is best recognized for its serene ambiance and regal historical past.
The high issues to do in Nara are to go to Nara Deer Park, Todai-Ji Temple, and Tamukeyama Hachimangu Shrine. You may simply spend a complete day temple-hopping although, and Nara is stuffed with peaceable locations for guests to immerse themselves in Japan’s lovely tradition.
Nara can be straightforward to mix with visiting different cities in Japan. Traveling from Kyoto to Nara is only a brief prepare trip, taking round 45 minutes a method.
Like Hiroshima, Nagasaki was sufferer to an atomic bomb in 1945. The devastation was heartbreaking, and guests will pay their respects right now at points of interest just like the Peace Park. Nagasaki has many different elements that make it an academic vacation spot although. Nagasaki is without doubt one of the largest port cities in Japan and has an extended historical past of buying and selling with Europe.
The result’s a fusion of European and Japanese tradition and affect. You’ll discover Christian websites like Oura Cathedral amongst the gathering of gorgeous shrines and temples. To immerse your self in the historical past of Japan’s worldwide relations, you actually can’t discover a higher place.
Then, whenever you’re prepared, you’ll be able to go to the Atomic Hypocenter Park and Peace Park to find the darker facet of Nagasaki’s historical past. The metropolis has heaps so that you can be taught.
Do you acknowledge the title Sapporo? The metropolis of Sapporo simply occurs to be the namesake (and birthplace) of one among Japan’s most well-known beer manufacturers. Sapporo is the capital of the Hokkaido Prefecture and is well probably the greatest cities in Japan. Situated on Japan’s Northern Island, Sapporo is well-combined with a go to to Tokyo.
Visitors can tour the Sapporo Beer Museum or trip as much as the highest of the Sapporo TV Tower. There’s a incredible combination of points of interest in Sapporo. It has that metropolis buzz, with numerous big-city-style leisure and vacationer infrastructure.
If you’ll be able to, coincide your go to to Sapporo with the Snow Festival. The winter pageant is without doubt one of the greatest in the world, and the winter wonderland spreads 1.5 km – filled with ice sculptures, an ice skating rink, and sledding areas.
Kobe is one among Japan’s largest port cities, starting to overflow with glitzy skyscrapers and fashionable dwelling. This shouldn’t be what acquired Kobe its place in this information although; its meals scene is what makes it stand other than Japan’s different greatest cities. Kobe is world well-known for its Kobe beef and famend for its seafood. If you go to Kobe, be ready to splash out on every day restaurant meals, as its delicacies is just too tempting to move by.
We counsel exploring Kitano Village to see Kobe’s old-school structure. Of course, when you stroll by a steakhouse, be sure you pop in and seize a desk for a style of Kobe beef. Steak Aoyama is a small, family-run steakhouse with a superb popularity for scrumptious meals and fairly affordable costs. Finish your day with a stroll across the harbor, with views of the fashionable skyline lighting up after darkish.
Got a bit of additional time? Hike up Mount Rokko. Mount Rokko overshadows town as a phenomenal however fierce pure landmark. There are a variety of route choices so check out which most closely fits your health and technical talents.
Nikko is without doubt one of the smallest cities in Japan. Situated in the Tochigi Prefecture, Nikko is surrounded by the Japanese Alps. It is without doubt one of the most lovely locations to go to in the nation – not to mention simply amongst Japan’s greatest cities.
You can discover Nikko itself or use town as a gateway to Nikko National Park. You’ll discover temples, monkeys, and pure surroundings galore. Nikko is ideal for lovers of the nice outside. Visitors can simply stability mountain climbing days and outside actions with sightseeing in the Nikko metropolis heart.
When it involves issues to do in Nikko, the Shinko Bridge is a should. The iconic purple bridge is the postcard picture of Nikko, and it’s best to add it to even the shortest of itineraries. We additionally advocate spending no less than a day temple hopping. Outside of Nikko, Kegon Falls is incredible to go to. And, when you get an opportunity, take a scenic boat tour down the Kinugawa River.
Nikko is gorgeous. To get off the overwhelmed monitor and encompass your self with nature, look no additional. Nikko has a serenity that the foremost cities in Japan simply can’t present. We stayed in a conventional Ryokan in Nikko, and you may examine our expertise right here.
Matsue is in the Shimane Prefecture on the southwest coast of Japan. The giant metropolis is known as ‘the water city’, because of its location between the ocean and Lake Shinji. Mastue is much less common than main cities like Tokyo, however those that stray off the overwhelmed path shall be richly rewarded. Matsue is stuffed with feudal historical past, historic websites, and exquisite surroundings.
The greatest issues to do are to go to Matsue Castle, the Adachi Museum of Art, and one of many shrines. The Yaegaki and Miho shrines are each well-known for his or her magnificence. While, if you wish to embrace the water actions of ‘the water city’, you’ll be able to take a sundown cruise on Lake Shinji.
Matsue has a calming ambiance and is a wonderful summer season vacation spot. It is without doubt one of the greatest cities to unwind and be taught on the identical journey.
Beppu isn’t at all times included in lists of the perfect cities in Japan. Sure, Beppu isn’t one among Japan’s main cities. However, it is without doubt one of the nation’s most enjoyable locations to go to. Beppu is a geologist’s delight and the perfect vacation spot for warm springs in Japan. If you desire a spa getaway or simply to expertise the pure wonders in Japan, Beppu is value visiting.
Since Beppu has over 2,000 scorching spring sources, you’ll have numerous spa-related issues to do in town. You can select heated mineral springs or bathe in nutrient-rich heated mud or sand baths. You may even steam your personal meals over the onsen steam.
Want one thing completely totally different? Take a cable automobile journey up the Beppu Ropeway or go to the Harmonyland theme park. Beppe is without doubt one of the greatest cities in Japan for a brief getaway and is certainly value an area in your itinerary.
There are so many wonderful cities in Japan. The nation is a treasure trove of fascinating city scenes, and also you’ll discover a distinctive tradition, traditions, and scrumptious meals. Whether you need the neon lights of Tokyo or the blue waters of the ocean by Fukuoka, you’ll rapidly discover a metropolis to fit your wants and pursuits. Besides, all of those cities in Japan are value visiting.
We hope that you’ve an exquisite go to to Japan. The nation is bound to encourage a return go to, so put together to fall in love.