11 days in Tokyo & Tohoku Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Japan visit planner
Make it your trip
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— 2 nights


Tokyo — 2 nights

Tokyo holds the status of most populous metropolitan area in the world--a fact you'll find tangible as you walk the bustling streets and explore its diverse neighborhoods and cultures.
Step out of Tokyo with an excursion to Tokyo DisneySea in Maihama--about 30 minutes away. Next up on the itinerary: don't miss a visit to Meiji Jingu Shrine, enjoy breathtaking views from Tokyo Skytree, take in the spiritual surroundings of Senso-ji Temple, and admire the striking features of Tokyo Tower.

To find traveler tips, more things to do, reviews, and other tourist information, use the Tokyo itinerary planner.

Singapore, Singapore to Tokyo is an approximately 10-hour flight. You can also do a combination of car and ferry. The time zone changes from Singapore Standard Time (SGT) to Japan Standard Time (JST), which is usually a 1 hour difference. Prepare for colder weather when traveling from Singapore in December: high temperatures in Tokyo hover around 14°C and lows are around 4°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Mon) to allow time to fly to Yamagata.
Museums · Theme Parks · Neighborhoods · Parks
Side Trip
Find places to stay Dec 3 — 5:

Yamagata — 3 nights

The town of Yamagata and its surrounding prefecture have a wealth of attractions, both man-made and natural.
Start off your visit on the 6th (Tue): don't miss a visit to Frost Covered Trees of Zao, then fly down the slopes at Yamagata Zao Onsen Ski Resort, and then test the waters at a local thermal spa. Here are some ideas for day two: make a trip to O-torii, then admire the landmark architecture of Yamagata Kyodokan, and then stroll around Kajo Park.

To see more things to do, traveler tips, photos, and other tourist information, use the Yamagata online travel route planner.

You can fly from Tokyo to Yamagata in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or drive. Traveling from Tokyo in December, things will get a bit cooler in Yamagata: highs are around 4°C and lows about 0°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 8th (Thu) early enough to drive to Semboku.
Parks · Winter Sports · Museums · Spas
Side Trip
Find places to stay Dec 5 — 8:

Semboku — 2 nights

Established in 2005 by the merging of several towns and villages, Semboku boasts an Old Japan atmosphere, punctuated by traditional onsen resorts, old samurai houses, and weeping cherry trees.
On the 8th (Thu), explore the activities along Lake Tazawa, then get engrossed in the history at Ishiguro Samurai House, then browse the exhibits of Aoyagi Samurai Manor Museum, and finally wander the streets of Samurai District. On the 9th (Fri), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: take a stroll through Kakunodate and then indulge in Japan's hot spring tradition at some of the top local onsens.

For ratings, maps, traveler tips, and more tourist information, read Semboku online tour planner.

Traveling by car from Yamagata to Semboku takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or do a combination of bus and train. In December in Semboku, expect temperatures between 3°C during the day and 0°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 10th (Sat) to allow enough time to take a train to Towada.
Neighborhoods · Historic Sites · Nature · Parks
Find places to stay Dec 8 — 10:

Towada — 1 night

Tucked away among the foothills of the Hakkoda mountain range, Towada tourism revolves around its eponymous lake and the surrounding national park.
On the 10th (Sat), contemplate the waterfront views at Kumoi no Taki Waterfall, contemplate the waterfront views at Oirase Gorge, and then indulge in Japan's hot spring tradition at some of the top local onsens.

To find traveler tips, more things to do, reviews, and tourist information, read Towada day trip planner.

Getting from Semboku to Towada by train takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: drive. In December, daytime highs in Towada are 3°C, while nighttime lows are 0°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 11th (Sun) so you can go by car to Aomori.
Nature · Parks · Spas · Baths
Find places to stay Dec 10 — 11:
Highlights from your trip

Aomori — 2 nights

Facing Mutsu Bay on the northernmost tip of Honshu, Aomori is a bustling regional capital known for its fresh seafood and modern architecture.
On the 11th (Sun), admire the masterpieces at Aomori Museum of Art, then admire the landmark architecture of Nebuta Museum Wa Rasse, and then buy something for everyone on your list at A-FACTORY. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: browse the eclectic array of goods at Auga Fresh Market, get answers to all your questions at Aomori Prefecture Tourist Centerl ASPAM, and then make a trip to Aomori Bay Bridge.

Make your Aomori itinerary with Inspirock to find out what to see and where to go.

You can drive from Towada to Aomori in 1.5 hours. Other options are to do a combination of bus and train; or take a bus. Traveling from Towada in December, expect a bit cooler with lows of -2°C in Aomori. On the 13th (Tue), you'll travel back home.
Shopping · Museums
Find places to stay Dec 11 — 13:

Tohoku travel guide

Sacred & Religious Sites · Landmarks · Historic Sites
Long a poor rural area known for its harsh climate, Tohoku remained off the tourist radar for most of modern Japanese history. Today, tourism in Tohoku remains refreshingly subdued, offering the chance to discover some of the country's finest natural scenery without the crowds. The area encompasses many scenic hot springs, developed ski areas, picturesque lakes, and historic castles and former samurai residences. Tohoku also serves as an ideal spot for that quintessential Japanese activity, the cherry blossom viewing: the trees bloom later here than elsewhere in the country, making the region a great alternative if you arrive a bit late in the season.

Akita Prefecture travel guide

Specialty Museums · Bodies of Water · Landmarks
Akita Prefecture is a prefecture located in the Tōhoku region of Japan. The capital is the city of Akita.HistoryThe area of Akita has been created from the ancient provinces of Dewa and Mutsu.Separated from the principal Japanese centres of commerce, politics, and population by several hundred kilometres and the Ōu and Dewa mountain ranges to the east, Akita remained largely isolated from Japanese society until after the year 600. Akita was a region of hunter-gatherers and principally nomadic tribes.The first historical record of what is now Akita Prefecture dates to 658, when the Abe no Hirafu conquered the native Ezo tribes at what are now the cities of Akita and Noshiro. Hirafu, then governor of Koshi Province (the northwest part of Honshū bordering the Sea of Japan), established a fort on the Mogami River, and thus began the Japanese settlement of the region.In 733, a new military settlement—later renamed Akita Castle—was built in modern-day Akita city at Takashimizu, and more permanent roads and structures were developed. The region was used as a base of operations for the Japanese empire as it drove the native Ezo people from northern Honshū.It shifted hands several times. During the Tokugawa shogunate it was appropriated to the Satake clan, who ruled the region for 260 years, developing the agriculture and mining industries that are still predominant today. Throughout this period, it was classified as part of Dewa Province. In 1871, during the Meiji Restoration, Dewa Province was reshaped and the old daimyō domains were abolished and administratively reconstructed, resulting in the modern-day borders of Akita.