Itinerary for Japan


A super itinerary for Japan and South Korea, with daily details and unforgettable attractions! Come and find out how Rodrigo's third trip was with personalized consultancy here on the blog and get all the tips for visiting Asia!

Itinerary for Japan


Itinerary for Japan and South Korea

The itinerary with day-to-day details of the trip was very good, I was able to visit almost all the suggested places. Some of the suggested restaurants I couldn't go to, either because I couldn't find them, or because they were closed – but, overall, the daily schedule was great and I really enjoyed it! This was my third personalized itinerary with Rogério – the first was for France, England, Scotland and Ireland and the second for Spain and Portugal.

I had never thought about visiting South Korea as a tourist, but I ended up including the destination in my itinerary because I had a conference to attend there. Japan has always been a dream trip – my grandparents came to Brazil from Japan.

Itinerary for Japan


The cities

Alone: I spent five days sightseeing in Seoul, plus three in Congress – I think the time was adequate, I was able to do everything in the itinerary and a little more. It's a modern city, I found it a bit gray because of the pollution. I really enjoyed visiting the Seoul Tower and the Palaces, which I consider unmissable attractions there – especially the Imperial Palace. I also visited several Buddhist temples – the majority of the population there is of this religion. I really like sports, so I loved visiting the Olympic Park.

Hiroshima: From Korea, I left for Japan and started the trip in Hiroshima, where I stayed for three days. The rain got in the way a little, I would have liked to have stayed a day longer. I went to the Atomic Bomb Museum – a difficult but interesting tour – and I also enjoyed visiting Hiroshima Castle, which was destroyed by the bomb. Everything revolves around this issue there, it's sad but an important part of the country's history.

Miyajima: I spent a day and a night there and I think it's worth spending a night on the island, mainly because of the variation in tides. There was enough time to visit everything. The island is an hour away from Hiroshima and its main attraction is the Itsukushima temple, where the Great Torii is located, which is submerged when the tide rises at night. The Torii is considered a “gate” that separates worldly life and spiritual life, and one of the UNESCO world heritage sites.

Itinerary for Japan


Osaka: I stayed in Osaka for three days and, from there, I made two day trips (one to Nara and one to Kobe) and, therefore, it was a bit hectic, perhaps an extra day would be more than enough to get to know the city better. Osaka Castle is an unmissable attraction (I thought it was even more incredible than the one in Hiroshima), as is the Osaka Aquarium (Kayuukan). I also visited Dotonbory, one of the symbols of the city, an avenue full of neon lights and many restaurants.

Nara: I thought it was enough of a day trip to get to know Nara, the city where the giant Buddha is located, which is located in Nara Park. I walked a lot around Nara, I visited several temples too and my tip is: be careful with the deer in the Deer Park – there are several warnings saying not to touch the animals, as they may bite…

Kobe: I wanted to meet Kobe and I found the tour a bit rushed, but I managed to see everything, in the end. Kobe is the most cosmopolitan city in the traditional Kansai region. Its mercantile DNA, influenced by neighboring Osaka, has witnessed the continuous flow of ships, products, ideas and people from across the globe. Most of the Japanese immigrants who chose Brazil as their new home departed from there. I visited the Navy Museum, the iconic port tower and the Kawasaki Museum too.

Itinerary for Japan


Kyoto: I spent five days there and found the time to be adequate, it's a shame that the Imperial Palace was closed for a few days and so I had to change the itinerary a little. Kyoto is the soul and essence of Japanese culture and the first capital of Japan and there are many unmissable tours to do there. One of them is visiting Kiyomizu-dera, probably the most famous temple in ancient Kyoto, which attracts more than 3 million visitors a year. The view of the city seen from the temple is wonderful. The Imperial Palace is also incredible and, on the Ninen-zaka slope, you will take beautiful photos and find the Kyoto you imagined. I also visited Aoi Matsuri, considered the oldest continuously running festival in the world. It originated in the 6th century and takes place at Shimogamo Shrine.

Yokohama: Given the limited time, I only made a return trip to Yokohama and I found it a bit rushed, I think it's worth spending a night in the city. It is a very modern city. I really enjoyed visiting the Yokohama Aquarium and the port area.

Itinerary for Japan


Kamakura: Another place I went back and forth to and found that to be enough time. There, I visited another giant Buddha – as it is outdoors, I found it even more impressive than the one I saw in Nara – and I also visited other temples.

Hakone: I was in Hakone during a day trip and it was enough. From there, I was able to see Mount Fuji in my last days of the trip – it spent the rest of the days hiding, I thought I wouldn't see it but in the end, everything worked out. The day I went to Hakone, the weather was great and I was able to see Mount Fuji and take good photos!

Tokyo: I only spent two days in Tokyo and I would have liked to have stayed a few more days in the city. I ended up doing three day trips from there (Hakone, Kamakura and Yokohama), but I managed to do some sightseeing. I went to the Tokyo Sky Tree, to the Imperial Palace garden (which, unfortunately, was closed). Tokyo is impressive – the famous intersection in Shibuyia is really crowded but you will find more tourists than Japanese there – and I also saw another side of the city when I was at Sanja Matsuri, a very traditional festival, celebrating its 700th anniversary in 2012! I watched a baseball game at the Tokyo Dome, another really cool experience!

Itinerary for Japan


Flights and train travel

The flights from São Paulo-Seoul and Tokyo-São Paulo with Turkish and Seoul-Tokyo with United were smooth, without delays, on comfortable planes.

The Tokyo-Hiroshima (ANA) flight had no delays or problems, but it was on a very small plane, and the space for hand luggage was very small – especially for those traveling intercontinentally. I had a little trouble accommodating my luggage.

All trains were very punctual and provided clear information, and when necessary the station staff were very attentive. If you also want to travel by train like I did, you can buy your ticket in advance using this service, recommended by the blog.

Itinerary for Japan


The accommodations

Rogério recommended some hotels for my itinerary, here are my reviews of the experience:

Seul – Holiday Inn Express Seoul Euljiro: well located for what I was looking for, easy to get to the congress and tours, very close to the metro station, but without many restaurants in the area. I found the room simple and with good space. A bit expensive.

Hiroshima – Hotel Park Side Hiroshima Peace Park: well located, very close to Parque da Paz. Very simple and small room. Good price.

Osaka – APA Villa Hotel: very well located, in front of the subway station and very close to Osaka castle. Simple and small room. Average price.

Itinerary for Japan


Kyoto – M's Inn Higashiyama: a little far from train and metro stations with some bus lines nearby. Very large room by Japanese standards with microwave oven, minibar and washing machine. However, there are no employees at reception and it does not allow luggage to be left before check-in or after check-out. Average price.

Tóquio – Hotel Check-In Shimbashi: well located, close to the metro station, with several restaurants in the area. Very small and simple room. Average price.

Itinerary for Japan


Transport card

I used two transport cards during my trip, the T-Money Card (Seoul) and the PASMO (Tokyo). There is no monetary advantage to both, it is worth it because of the practicality of not having to buy tickets individually. They are accepted in convenience stores and taxis.

I also used the Hakone Free Pass in Hakone. Despite being valid for two days, it is worth purchasing even for a single day, as it entitles you to ropeway, train, bus and boat in the Hakone region. If you buy all these services separately, it is a little more expensive and gives you a discount in some museums or stores. It can be purchased in Tokyo (Shinagawa) or in Odawara (in this case, transportation to Tokyo is not included).

Itinerary for Japan


Advance tickets

I only bought one advance ticket for the trip, which was the ticket to watch the baseball game in Tokyo. I received it at the hotel with all the instructions for the purchase and it was worth it.

Immigration procedures

My immigration procedures were carried out, respectively, in Seoul and Tokyo. No problem.

Itinerary for Japan


The weather during the trip

I had good weather for almost the entire trip. Only the two days in Hiroshima and the last day in Tokyo where it rained all day.

Internet and telephony

I used MaxRoam, a prepaid chip used on international trips. My opinion: I think that if you are going to visit many countries, MaxRoam is worth it because you don't have to go around town looking for SIM cards in every country you arrive in.

Itinerary for Japan


Consultancy evaluation

The itinerary was very good, I took advantage of it, I really enjoyed it and I did almost everything that was suggested in the day-to-day tour plan prepared by Rogério!

The trip was very good, I had new experiences, I got to know different cultures, I was in beautiful landscapes and I took a lot of photos. Very good experience. The consultancy was again very positive and I found the day-to-day itinerary very interesting and well put together.

Tips for other travelers

A region that wasn't on my itinerary, but was nice to visit, was Roppongi (in Tokyo) with lots of foreigners and several not-so-expensive restaurants, as well as Roppongi Hills.

Sao Paulo-SP
Travel date: April and May 2017

Itinerary for Japan



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