15 days in Japan & China Itinerary

15 days in Japan & China Itinerary

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Route & dates

Start: Durango, United States
Fly:  18 h 45 min
1
Tokyo, Japan
— 3 nights
Train:  2 h 45 min
2
Kyoto, Japan
— 2 nights
Train + Fly:  6 h 30 min
3
Shanghai, China
— 2 nights
+3
Fly + Bus + Foot + Train:  5 h 30 min
4
Hong Kong, China
— 3 nights
Fly:  6 h 15 min
5
Beijing, China
— 3 nights
Fly:  26 h
End: Durango, United States


Learn more about your trip

3
nights
Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo ©
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.
Tokyo is known for historic sites, parks, and shopping. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: don't miss a visit to Meiji Jingu Shrine, see the interesting displays at Edo-Tokyo Museum, take in the spiritual surroundings of Senso-ji Temple, and admire the masterpieces at Tokyo National Museum.

For ratings, where to stay, maps, and tourist information, you can read our Tokyo trip itinerary planning website.

Durango, USA to Tokyo is an approximately 18.5- hour flight. You can also do a combination of shuttle and flight. You'll lose 16 hours traveling from Durango to Tokyo due to the time zone difference. While traveling from Durango, expect somewhat warmer days and much warmer nights in Tokyo, ranging from highs of 54°F to lows of 39°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 12th (Thu) early enough to catch the train to Kyoto.

Things to do in Tokyo

Neighborhoods Museums Historic Sites
Find places to stay Dec 9 — 12:
Highlights from your plan
Owl cafe Akiba Fukurou ©
Owl cafe Akiba Fukurou
Meiji Jingu Shrine ©
Meiji Jingu Shrine
Tokyo Tower ©
Tokyo Tower

2
nights
Kyoto, Japan

Kyoto ©
The national capital for over a thousand years, Kyoto retains much of the charm of old Japan, boasting numerous temples and shrines that seem completely untouched by the modern world.
Kick off your visit on the 13th (Fri): steep yourself in history at Heian Shrine, contemplate the long history of Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine, and then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Kiyomizu-dera Temple. On the next day, admire the striking features of Kyutei Omuro, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Kinkaku-ji, then explore the historical opulence of Nijo Castle, and finally take a stroll through Gion.

To see ratings, traveler tips, where to stay, and more tourist information, refer to the Kyoto trip itinerary builder tool.

Take a train from Tokyo to Kyoto in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and bus; or drive. Expect a daytime high around 52°F in December, and nighttime lows around 39°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 14th (Sat) early enough to travel to Shanghai.

Things to do in Kyoto

Historic Sites Neighborhoods
Find places to stay Dec 12 — 14:
Highlights from your plan
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine ©
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine
Kiyomizu-dera Temple ©
Kiyomizu-dera Temple
Gion
Gion

2
nights
Shanghai, China

Shanghai ©
With a nickname like the "Pearl of the Orient," it's not surprising Shanghai offers some of the most rewarding attractions and activities in the Far East.
Kick off your visit on the 15th (Sun): admire the striking features of 1933 Old Millfun, admire the striking features of Oriental Pearl Tower (Dongfang Mingzhu), then take in panoramic vistas at Shanghai World Financial Center, then go for a walk through The Bund (Wai Tan), and finally make a trip to Nanjing Lu (Nanjing Road). Here are some ideas for day two: examine the collection at Shanghai Museum (Shanghai Bowuguan), then admire the natural beauty at Yu Garden (Yuyuan), then wander the streets of Maoming Road, and finally admire the striking features of Jade Buddha Temple.

For where to stay, photos, more things to do, and more tourist information, read Shanghai online tour itinerary planner.

You can do a combination of train and flight from Kyoto to Shanghai in 6.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of train, bus, and flight; or do a combination of bus and flight. The time zone difference moving from Japan Standard Time (JST) to China Standard Time (CST) is minus 1 hour. December in Shanghai sees daily highs of 52°F and lows of 40°F at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 16th (Mon) to allow time to travel to Hong Kong.

Things to do in Shanghai

Museums Historic Sites Shopping
Find places to stay Dec 14 — 16:
Highlights from your plan
Shanghai Museum (Shanghai Bowuguan) ©
Shanghai Museum (Shanghai Bowuguan)
The Bund (Wai Tan) ©
The Bund (Wai Tan)
Oriental Pearl Tower (Dongfang Mingzhu) ©
Oriental Pearl Tower (Dongfang Mingzhu)

3
nights
Hong Kong, China

Hong Kong ©
Witness the vibrant skyline of Hong Kong, an impressive urban territory on the southern coast of China.
Hong Kong is known for shopping, theme parks, and parks. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: get in on the family fun at Hong Kong Disneyland, observe the fascinating underwater world at Ocean Park, take in panoramic vistas at Victoria Peak (The Peak), and get engrossed in the history at Hong Kong Museum of History.

To find where to stay, traveler tips, maps, and other tourist information, read Hong Kong tour itinerary planner.

Do a combination of flight, bus, and train from Shanghai to Hong Kong in 5.5 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or drive. Traveling from Shanghai in December, you will find days in Hong Kong are somewhat warmer (70°F), and nights are much warmer (61°F). Finish up your sightseeing early on the 19th (Thu) so you can travel to Beijing.

Things to do in Hong Kong

Parks Theme Parks Historic Sites
Find places to stay Dec 16 — 19:
Highlights from your plan
Victoria Peak (The Peak) ©
Victoria Peak (The Peak)
Hong Kong Disneyland ©
Hong Kong Disneyland
Ocean Park ©
Ocean Park

3
nights
Beijing, China

Beijing
As the political and cultural capital of China, Beijing stands at the heart of Chinese history, buzzing with the energy of its high population density and centuries of importance.
Kick off your visit on the 20th (Fri): see Mutianyu Great Wall and then take some stellar pictures from Tiananmen Square (Tiananmen Guangchang). Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: get engrossed in the history at Lama Temple (Yonghegong) and then get to know the fascinating history of Summer Palace (Yiheyuan).

To see more things to do, traveler tips, maps, and tourist information, use the Beijing trip planner.

You can fly from Hong Kong to Beijing in 6.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of train, bus, and flight; or drive. Prepare for much colder weather when traveling from Hong Kong in December: high temperatures in Beijing hover around 40°F and lows are around 19°F. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 22nd (Sun) to allow time for travel back home.

Things to do in Beijing

Historic Sites Parks Outdoors
Find places to stay Dec 19 — 22:
Highlights from your plan
Mutianyu Great Wall
Mutianyu Great Wall
Summer Palace (Yiheyuan) ©
Summer Palace (Yiheyuan)
Lama Temple (Yonghegong) ©
Lama Temple (Yonghegong)

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