Places to visit in Japan are legion. There are over 200 locations listed as scenic spots around the country, and you can easily add more as you explore!
Many of these places have a rich historic past, so some of the most beautiful sites are still active. For instance, Takamisuka, a fishing village that has been preserved since the Edo era (1603-1867), is one of these.
It features beautiful ancient fishermen’s homes and a striking white-sand beach where you can sit and enjoy the view as the waves gently crash against the shore.
Another site that deserves special notice is Natsume Sazanami, a national park that encompasses several waterfalls. The park was designated as such due to its high concentration of azaleas, which are highly prized for their vivid colors.
Kyoto is one of the most beloved cities in Japan. Its temples, historical sites, and idyllic countryside make an unforgettable visit.
Visiting Kyoto is a slow, enjoyable journey. It takes about a week to explore all the places on foot and in reverse order. You will be in Kyoto for a short time too, so plan your trips around the seasons!
Weekdays are slowest, as are Saturdays and Sundays. Weekends are the busiest time, with everything open late and everything new going live.
Some highlights include visiting Shinto shrines such as Tokyo’s Todaiji Temple or Kyoto’s Ginkaku Temple; checking out one of the many botanical gardens; or taking a guided walking tour at one of the local museums.
As the largest city in Japan, Osaka is a classic big-city experience. Built upon the silk industry in the mid-20th century, Osaka is known for its vibrant streets and historic buildings.
Today, Osaka is a major cultural and economic center for the country. It’s one of only a handful of Japanese cities with an American street name: Canal Street is Ulysses Street.
Osaka was once called Heian Kyo, later renamed Nara and then Tokyo. Both Heian Kyo and Nara are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Heian Kyo was a medieval splendour that included old Imperial palaces, temples, manor houses, shops, and other visual representations of power and wealth. Today it’s a museum full of ancient artifacts from around the world.
Nara has been designated as another UNESCO World Heritage Site because of its history as both Heian Kyo and Buddhist temple complex.
Hiroshima is a city that will stay with you. It was one of the first cities to be destroyed in the atomic bombing during World War II, and as a result, it left an impact on everyone who went there.
The city was rebuilt using only valuable materials and was designated a UNESCO world heritage site for this reason. Today, Hiroshima is a vibrant city filled with shops, monuments, and memories of the war destruction.
Visiting Hiroshima is an experience in itself. First off, you must go visit the Atomic Bomb Dome where you can see firsthand how devastatingly powerful nuclear weapons actually are. You can also go to Peace Park where you can view the bomb effects and read about them.
You can also go visit Nagasaki Union Church where casualties from both cities were buried. Or if you are more morbidly inclined, visit Tokai-ji Temple where Hiroshi Hóshō repose after his heroic role in fighting Japan’s nuclear weapons program.
Miyajima is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, located in the city of Miyajima, Hiroshima Prefecture. The island is composed of four main islands that rise up from the water, forming an natural fortress.
The site was first inhabited around 600-700 BCE by Chinto Chinto no Mochikoshi-nya, who built a fortress and lived there. Over the centuries, the island was occupied by several cultures before being annexed to Japan in 1336.
Today, Miyajima is one of Japan’s top tourist destinations with over 1 million visitors annually. There are four main temples on the island: Kumano Jindai, Kumano Nukuiya-no-mai, Shiba Shingon and Daigo Kannon-ji. All are open for visitation and offer breathtaking sights including high ocean waves crashing against rocks and temples raised above them.
Hokkaido is one of Japan’s many scenic regions. There are many beautiful places in this area, and you can visit them all without leaving Japan.
Here are some of the most popular places to visit in Hokkaido:
Korokoro Caves – These caves were carved by glaciers thousands of years ago. You can experience a guided tour at Korokoro Caves, where a guide leads you inside the cave and explains the history behind it. On the tour, you learn about how people believed that water was valuable back then, and they hunted iceanimals to use as water purification agents.
– These caves were carved by glaciers thousands of years ago. You can experience a guided tour at Korokoro Caves, where a guide leads you inside an Inside the caves you also get introduced to some of their stories. One story about these caves involves a young girl who wasnt strong enough on her own to get inside, so her parents took her to Korokoro Caves to help find answers for her condition.
Okinawa is a small, lushly forested island in Japan’s Miyashinaheo Bay. It’s approximately 3 miles long and 1 mile wide, making it a pretty easy place to explore on your own.
Okinawa is famous for its beautiful beaches and marine life, so finding a tour or trip to Okinawa is an experience in itself. Tourists make up only a small part of the population, however, so you’ll be the one calling the shots as far as destinations go.
With just over 4 hundred sites recorded as historic buildings, there’s plenty to see and experience on Okinawa. Many are restored with modern conveniences such as electricity and plumbing, making them very livable even today.
Some of these sites are easily accessible by plane or boat, making them an easy way to get some exploring in.
Not only is Mount Fuji one of the world’s most famous landmarks, visiting its base is a must. Located in Japan’s highest city, Tokyo, you can take a cable car or bus to the top!
If you’re up for the challenge, you can make the short walk to see this iconic structure. It takes about an hour to an hour and a half to climb and enjoy all of its views.
You can start at any time of day, and even during the daytime if there are clouds floating by. There’s usually still some light coming from the snow as it falls, so you can make your visit go even longer!
For those with less strength or if winter weather is preventing you from going outside, there are plenty of activities that let you see Mount Fuji in real life.
Shiretoko National Park
Shiretoko National Park is one of the most beautiful national parks in Japan. Located in the northern region of Japan, it’s close to Hokkaido and Aomori prefectures.
Shiretoko is home to a large variety of animals, including fur seals and beautiful eagles. It’s also a popular destination for hikers and birders.
Visitors can get there by public transportation or on foot, depending on where you are located. A popular start point is Shiretoko-mae Station on the Hokuhara Line, which connects Sapporo and Tokyo.
The park has a hiker/biker track that connects different points of entry, making it easy to start your tour at a different location.