BEST OF JAPAN’S TOP 10 ATTRACTIONS
The history of Japan is fascinating, and it makes the country stand out among the others. Both active vacationers and those who would rather relax in peace and quiet while still connecting with nature and local culture will find something to enjoy here. If you’ve come looking for fun things to do in Japan, you’ve come to the right place. However, before you visit Japan, here are some of the best tours to take while there:
THE MOST POPULAR TOURS IN JAPAN
- 🌄 Take a day trip to Mount Fuji to see the UNESCO World Heritage site and one of the world’s most recognizable mountains.
- 😋 Join a local, knowledgeable guide on a tour of the famous Tsukiji Fish Market (outside area) and Uogashi wholesaler market to learn all about the fascinating world of local seafood.
- 🤿 Take a half-day snorkeling tour with hotel transfers to the Kerama Islands and swim with tropical fish in the clear waters.
- 🕍 Take a day trip from Osaka to Kyoto to experience the city’s rich culture. While there, visit the Fushimi Inari Temple, Kiyomizu-dera Temple, Kinkakuji Temple, and Arashiyama.
- 🎎 Enjoy a day of fun immersed in the culture of Edo-era Japan, complete with live performances, classes, costume, and exhibits starring Ninjas, Samurais, and Geishas.
1. TAKE A BATH IN ONSEN HOT SPRINGS
Onsen, which literally means “hot spring” in Japanese, plays a huge role in Japanese culture. Japan’s active volcanic region has resulted in thousands of hot springs, which the Japanese regularly visit for relaxation.
PLANNING A LAST-MINUTE TRIP TO JAPAN?
TOP EXPERIENCES AND TOURS IN JAPAN:
- See the sights with a tour of Tokyo: Full-Day Private Tour with Nationally-Licensed Guide
- See Mount Fuji on the Private Full Day Sightseeing Tour to Mount Fuji and Hakone
- Explore more with this tour of Tokyo Half-Day Private Tour with Government-Licensed Guide
WHERE TO STAY IN JAPAN:
- Find accommodation with Booking.com
- Find your dream apartment in Japan with Agoda
- Find a hostel in Japan with Hostelworld
Members of the public with visible tattoos are not permitted to use the onsen facilities. Tattoos are generally not allowed in public Ryokan, but this policy is not always enforced.
Be sure to visit the onsen if you’re a fan of soothing temperatures of up to 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit) in the water. You should know that you can only sit in water that warm for a maximum of 10 minutes before needing a break.
2. VISIT THE HISTORICALLY SIGNIFICANT CITY OF HIROSHIMA
The city of Hiroshima, located in southern Japan, became infamous after being destroyed by an atomic bomb during World War II. Within two kilometers (1.24 miles) of the blast site, everything was wiped out, but the city was eventually rebuilt. The Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park and Museum is an extremely popular tourist destination.
The A-Bomb Dome in Hiroshima is a major tourist destination because it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Despite being one of the few structures still standing after the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, this building was used to advertise the city’s industrial sector.
The Mazda Museum is a must-see in Hiroshima. The world-famous car manufacturer now welcomes visitors to its factory and museum. You’ll get to see the assembly line in action and gain insight into the background of this manufacturer’s most popular models.
3. WATCH SUMO WRESTLING LIVE
There is no more popular sport in Japan than sumo. The winner in this style of wrestling is the one who successfully throws their opponent outside the ring. The whole match is over in a matter of seconds.
If you want to see sumo wrestlers in action, your best bet is to attend one of the four annual major tournaments held in Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya, and Fukuoka. Kokugikan sumo stadium, in Tokyo’s Ryogoku district, is where the majority of tournaments take place. You can time your trip to Japan to coincide with one of the tournaments, as they all last for 15 days.
4. EXPLORE BEAUTIFUL KYOTO
From ancient times until 1869, Kyoto served as Japan’s capital. That’s why you’ll find a lot of historic buildings like temples and castles here. One of the city’s most popular landmarks is a palace that once belonged to the imperial family.
Gion, located in Kyoto, is well-known for being a hotspot for geishas. There are lots of places to eat, as well as teahouses and stores. Fushimi Inari shrine, Kinkaku-Ji temple, and Monkey Park Iwatayama are also popular Kyoto attractions. However, the most popular destination is the stunning Arashiyama Bamboo Forest, which can be explored on foot along a path stretching for 4 kilometers or 2.48 miles.
If you want to see cherry blossoms, Kyoto is the place to do it in Japan. Typically, March is the beginning of cherry blossom season.
Nishiki Market in Kyoto is a fantastic tourist destination. Fresh seafood and Kyoto specialties have been sold at this centuries-old market. This is a fantastic spot for those who enjoy trying new foods.
On this early morning tour of Kyoto, you can experience one of Japan’s most visited cities without the usual tourist throngs.
5. SEE THE SACRED MOUNT FUJI
Mount Fuji, a volcano on Honshu Island, has a snowy peak for the better part of the year. It hasn’t erupted in about 300 years, but the volcano is very much alive and well.
Mount Fuji is one of the three sacred mountains in Japan. About 200,000 people a year make the ascent to the summit, which sits at an altitude of 3,776 meters (12,388 feet).
A number of paintings and souvenirs feature Mount Fuji because it serves as an inspiration to many creatives. There are also guided tours that take visitors to off-the-beaten-path locations with breathtaking panoramas of Fuji.
Join us on this tour and learn about Mount Fuji from an experienced guide.
6. EXPLORE JAPAN BY BULLET TRAIN
Japan’s public transportation system works very well thanks to the Shinkansen bullet trains. The trains run by Japan Railways reach every corner of the country. The top speed of a bullet train is 520 kilometers per hour (almost 200 miles an hour).
A total of nine Shinkansen lines connect Japan’s major cities like Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya, Fukuoka, and Kyoto, making it easy to travel throughout the country. Bullet train tickets can be purchased at ticket vending machines, ticket offices, or online.
The bullet train allows you to bring two bags. Wheelchair passengers can easily board trains because there is room for them, and there are also elevators and escalators. Shinkansen trains are reliable, on-time, and have a high standard of safety and comfort.
7. SLEEP IN SMALL CAPSULE HOTELS
Capsule hotels are worth considering if you need a cheap place to stay in Japan. Some capsule hotels are located near train stations and provide separate facilities for male and female guests.
A mattress, pillow, and blanket are provided in each capsule. Furthermore, there are electronic conveniences such as a television, radio, alarm clock, electrical outlets, and wireless internet. Like a hostel, you can use the shared showers, toilets, and washrooms.
Lounge areas, video games, libraries, and vending machines stocked with food and drink are available at some capsule hotels.
8. TASTE THE SPECIALTIES OF JAPANESE CUISINE
Sushi is probably the first dish that comes to mind when you think of Japanese cuisine. This dish epitomizes Japanese cooking and is arguably the most well-known dish to originate from Japan. The Japanese really enjoy a dish that combines rice, fish, and vegetables in an artistic presentation. Oshi sushi, Nigiri sushi, Temaki sushi, etc., are all available in Japan.
Ramen is the second-most well-known Japanese cuisine. Ramen noodles, soup, and optional toppings (such as vegetables, meat, or eggs) make up this meal. Miso soup is a popular dish in Japan, alongside sushi and ramen. You should also try shabu-shabu, katsudon, kare raisu, and tempura if you haven’t already.
Try some sake if you’re interested in Japanese beverages. It’s a rice-based alcoholic drink. Of course you should be drinking green tea.
9. LEARN MORE ABOUT JAPANESE SHRINES AND TEMPLES
The Japanese have a deep reverence for their cultural past. Many people travel to Japan specifically to visit the numerous Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples spread across the country. Among Japan’s many sacred sites, the Fushimi Inari Shrine in Kyoto and the Sensoji Temple in Tokyo and Nara’s Todaiji Temple are among the most well-known.
A shrine can be identified by its distinctive wooden torii gate. When visiting a sacred site, such as a shrine or temple, you are expected to behave in a certain way.
It is common practice for some monasteries to be housed in temples. There are also rooms in every temple where priceless relics like Buddha statues are kept. Lecture halls are also available for use. The Kinkaku-Ji, Hokoku-Ji, and Kiyomizu-Dera temples are the three most well-known Buddhist shrines in Japan.
10. EXPERIENCE COMPLETELY DIFFERENT AREAS IN TOKYO
Japan’s capital is home to over 20 million people and a wide variety of tourist attractions.
Harajuku is the center of Japanese youth culture and a major shopping district.
Shinjuku is the heart of Tokyo’s commercial and entertainment district. Clubs, karaoke parlors, bars, and restaurants have made it famous. The Robot restaurant and the observation deck at the Metropolitan Government Office are two of the most frequented spots in the area.
Shibuya is Tokyo’s most well-known shopping district. There is also the well-known Shibuya Crossing nearby.
The central Tokyo neighborhood of Akihabara is where you want to be if you have a passion for electronics. Retailers specializing in consumer electronics are plentiful. We highly suggest checking out Radio Kaikan and the Tokyo Anime Center.
Asakusa is a fantastic location to visit if you’re interested in browsing traditional handicraft stores. Hanayashiki theme park and Sensoji temple are two of the most visited attractions in the region. You can sample Japanese street food, snacks, and beer as well.
Ueno Park is home to a number of Tokyo’s best museums as well as the city’s beloved Ueno Zoo. Especially the Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum and the Tokyo National Museum will impress you with their collections.