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  • 1

    Beppu

    4.5
    7 reviews

    If you head south, and want to visit onsen (hot spring) town, Beppu is the best place. The whole town smells like egg, which is a good sign for the hot spring town. Though, it can be tricky to navigate since the town is old and streets are small and curvy. I got super lost when I Was there, barely ...

  • 2

    Nagano and the Japanese Alps

    4.5
    3 reviews

    The Japanese Alps in central Honshu are one of the highlights of a trip to Japan, and one that most visitors miss in their classic Tokyo-to-Kyoto circuit. Jaw-dropping scenery, gnarly trekking, and amazing resorts for skiing and snowboarding are all to be found here, just a five-hour ride away from the neon lights of Tokyo. Personal favorite? The 3-day circuit ...

  • 3

    Kamakura

    4.5
    30 reviews

    A nice day trip to the beach and temples. Particularly lovely during cherry blossom season.

  • 4

    Sapporo

    4.5
    23 reviews

    With excellent beer and outstanding ramen and seafood (crab and salmon especially, though it'll hurt your wallet), Sapporo is synonymous in the mind of many Japanese with eating, but it's also an attractive city of parks with an outstanding Winter Festival where the northern character of the city really shines. Best of all, unlike much of Hokkaido, it's directly accessible ...

  • 5

    Aso

    3.5
    3 reviews

    The town at the base of Mt. Aso, Japan's largest active volcano, is a small one, with plentiful budget lodging. It's a natural point of access to hiking and sightseeing around the volcano, and to the nearby onsen village of Kurokawa Onsen, a hidden highlight of Kyushu.

  • 6

    Hakone

    4.5
    19 reviews

    Despite the hoards of daytrippers that crowd the hot springs and the scenic viewpoints of Mt Fuji, Hakone is still a relaxing place to visit if you stick around for dinner and stay overnight in a traditional ryokan (inn) with private pools and views.

  • 7

    Kyoto

    4.5
    136 reviews

    Kyoto made me feel like I was in James Clavell's Shogun. Ok, I was a kid back then, way into karate, had just read Shogun and had an imagination that I let run wild but in Kyoto you don't really need any of the above to get that feeling of stepping into old Japan especially if you stay at a ...

  • 8

    Nara

    4.5
    27 reviews

    From what I could tell Nara is known for two things... 1. It is the "ancient capital" of Japan and 2. THE DEER! I think it is worth a visit just to see the deer in Nara! They are everywhere, sitting along the side of the street or walking down the road, and they will come right up to you! ...

  • 9

    Nikko

    4.5
    16 reviews

    This was as advertised! Temples galore and in the middle of the woods. A beautiful 5-story pagoda and gorgeous scenery. A must if you plan on venturing out of the cities of Japan.

  • 10

    Tatsuno

    5
    1 review

    A short train ride from the press of Osaka, this lovely little town has narrow winding streets famous as former homes of the samurai. A river wends through the place, enhancing the historic and intimate natural feel.

  • 11

    Matsushima-machi

    4
    2 reviews

    Matsushima is considered by the Japanese to be one of the country's most important "beauty spots." The mix of temples, red bridges, islands, and hot springs makes this a very special place that is easily managed on foot. The major sights can be seen at a leisurely pace in a single day though the town is pleasant enough to linger ...

  • 12

    Nagano

    4
    8 reviews

    You've got to get outside the Tokyo metro area to go skiing, but this mountain town in the so-called Japanese Alps has everything that downhill fiends will want, thanks to all the ski resort upgrades done before the winter Olympics back in the '90s. Even if you're not a pro, you can learn to ski here, too. The town itself ...

  • 13

    Matsumoto

    5
    5 reviews

    A little castle town in the Japanese Alps, Matsumoto lets you experience real small-town country life, even if you're just staying for one night. There are peaceful temples to visit, hot springs within a short bus ride, and great food stalls in the center of town.

  • 14

    Tokyo

    4.5
    452 reviews

    Tokyo is a huge, modern, busy, fast-paced, but also a very orderly and clean city. You can walk the busy streets and quiet parks, see some very interesting modern architecture and very important historical sites, view the city from one of the observation towers, take a boat ride with great city views, visit popular shopping streets, gawk at some amazing ...

  • 15

    Osaka

    4
    82 reviews

    Osaka is the second largest city in Japan by population, with over 10 million people, and is known for its excellent culinary delights, independent and entreprenurial spirit, home to the country's top comedians, and site of one of the country's most famous castles from the Samurai period, Osaka-Jo.

  • 16

    Greater Tokyo

    4.5
    52 reviews

    There is nothing like Tokyo. Modern, dense, chaotic but somehow orderly. It takes a bit of time to sort it all out but all-in-all fairly easy to navigate and explore. Don't be nervous. Just get out and see it.

  • 17

    Shinjuku

    4.5
    18 reviews

    Shinjuku is what many people think of when they imagine what Tokyo must look like: towering buildings (some with futuristic architecture), tons of flashing neon, and no shortage of crowds. One of the city's major commercial and entertainment centres, it's a great place for shopping, dining, and people-watching, particularly in the evenings, when the neon turns the district into a ...

  • 18

    Hiroshima

    4.5
    28 reviews

    At once a pleasantly relaxed and quiet city, and a potent symbol of the destructive horrors of the modern age, Hiroshima is practically an expected visit for anyone with a JR pass and an extra day or two. Still, some things are popular for a reason, and a morning spent in quiet reflection in the Atomic Bomb Memorial Museum and ...

  • 19

    Narita

    4
    14 reviews

    I had several hours layover at Narita (Tokyo) airport, so took a short train ride to Narita City. Easy walk from train station to shops and a scenic temple, definitely worth t the trip.

  • 20

    Fukuoka

    4
    15 reviews

    Fukuoka is a laid back town on a sea side. There's something unique about the cities near the ocean and Fukuoka is one of them. There are a lot of budget hotels to stay near the city square. Many options for the ferry boat if you want to travel other parts of the country by ferry boat!

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