Best Autumn Spots in Japan

Let's go around Japan in autumn well
in 5
nights and 6 days!


Welcome to the first day of your Japan adventure! Along the way, you'll glide through the Japanese countryside, past imposing mountains, quaint villages, and charming rice fields. By the time you arrive at an iconic castle, you'll have whet your appetite for all things Japan!

Maruoka Castle

Stepping off the bus, you'll be in the shadow of Maruoka-jo. This age-old castle was first built in the 16th century. The castle is also known as "Castle of the Mist" as a legend states that whenever an enemy approached the castle, a thick mist would surround the keep, protecting it from enemy armies. Regardless of the myth, the castle today is one of the finest remaining examples of castle architecture left standing in the country.

◉ Maruoka Castle
Address: Fukui, Sakai, Maruokacho Kasumicho, 1 Chome-59
Opening hours: 8:30AM-5PM
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For your second full day of the trip, you'll be taking in a bit of relaxation as you stroll around Yokokan Garden in the morning. After that, a quick train ride will bring you to Yamanaka Onsen, one of the most celebrated hot spring towns in the area.

Yokokan Garden

Yokokan Garden was formerly the site of the Matsudaira clan's villa around 400 years ago. The garden is now open to the public and offers superbly manicured arrangements of rock gardens, landscaped scenes, and water features. The garden is tastefully presented and is a great example of a classical Japanese garden.

Yamanaka Onsen Yuge Kaido

Yamanaka Onsen is a small resort town located alongside the Kakusenkei Gorge, which you'll check out tomorrow. The town has an almost sleepy feel, as it has retained a lot of its olden charm, with wooden architecture and picturesque streets. Be sure to give Yuge Kaido a visit, which is by far the best-kept of all the charming roads. With lovely boutique shops on either side of the street, along with cozy restaurants and cafes, this street is a great way to keep the relaxation theme going!

Stay in Yamanaka Onsen

No stay in a hot springs town is complete without a soak in the baths! Yamanaka Onsen water has been touted over the centuries as having restorative and curative effects. Pair this experience with a fantastic dinner of locally-sourced ingredients and you have a perfect night planned in Yamanaka Onsen.

◉ Yokokan Garden
Address: 3 Chome-11-36 Hoei, Fukui
Opening hours: 9AM-7PM
(The park will close at 5pm from November 6th to the end of February next year. Entry is until 30 minutes before closing time)
◉ Yamanaka Onsen Yuge Kaido
Address: Kaga, Ishikawa
Opening hours: -
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Your third day in Japan is a good mix of historical districts, super modern tranport, and some gorgeous nature. You'll also be stopping for lunch in one of the best places in the world for fresh seafood, the coastal town of Kanazawa. Let's get started!

Kakusenkei Gorge

Kakusenkei Gorge is one of Japan's best kept secrets. A must-see attraction if staying in Yamanaka Onsen, the gorge is surrounded by lush forest, running from a number of striking bridges. During your stroll, you'll be able to glimpse a number of peculiar rock formations and azure, deep water pools. The gorge so moved the famous poet Matsuo Basho that he wrote a poem about the place: "Here / the joy of a good / outdoor walk". Follow in Basho's footsteps and take in a bit of rustic nature!

Seafood Lunch at Kanazawa Station

Kanazawa prides itself on its refinement and heritage, as well as it's seafood. So, what better place to stop for lunch! The sushi is so good in Kanazawa, in fact, that the station itself has world-class offerings, so you don't have to go far. Try the Ajiwai Koji, or Flavor Lane, for some great options!

Ecchu Yatsuo Suwa-machi Main Street

You've now arrived at the restored town of Ecchu Yatsuo. This town makes you seem as if time hasn't moved since the Edo Period, almost 400 years ago. The charm of the town can really be felt during the Owara Kaze no Bon Festival held on 9/1-9/3 every year. This unique festival is known for its elegant dances, which belie the reason for the festival itself: to appease the winds so as not to destroy crops during typhoon season. Colorful dress, straw hats, and synchronized dances make for a mesmerizing experience.

◉ Kakusenkei Gorge
Address: 152 Yamanakaonsen Shimotanimachi, Kaga, Ishikawa
Opening hours: Open 24 hours
◉ Seafood Lunch at Kanazawa Station
Address: Ishikawa, Kanazawa, Kinoshinbomachi, 1-1
Opening hours: vary depending on the restaurant
◉ Ecchu Yatsuo Suwa-machi Main Street
Address: 2605 Yatsuomachi Suwamachi, Toyama
Opening hours: -
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Immerse yourself in culture today, as you visit a number of breathtaking spots, important culturally to the area. In the morning, after a quick ride on the bullet train, you'll visit Zuiryu-ji Temple, a national treasure. After, you'll be able to wander the grounds of World Heritage Sites before dining on the best beef in the country in the mountain village of Takayama.

Hokuriku Shinkansen

First thing this morning you'll hop back onto that venerable Japanese classic, the bullet train. So make your way smoothly from Toyama Station to Shin-Takaoka, only an eight-minute journey!

Zuiryu-ji Temple

Your first stop of the day is the beautiful Zuiryu-ji Temple, designated a National Treasure. The architecture is almost exactly symmetrical, with corridors connecting the buildings on both sides of the imposing Sanmon Gate.

World heritage site Gokayama

Gokayama is part of the area designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Over hundreds of years, the villagers refined their techniques and made a life for themselves away from the rest of civilization. Today, most of the houses are still used, either privately or for lodging.

World heritage site Shirakawa-go

With techniques developed over generations, the Shirakawa-go villagers designed unique gassho-zukuri buildings: farmhouses, barns and sheds with steeply pitched, thatched roofs designed to withstand the heavy winter snowfall.
Gassho-zukuri means "like praying hands", as the tall triangular roofs are said to resemble the hands of Buddhist monks pressed together in worship.

Hida Beef

After all that sightseeing it must be time to indulge in some of the local speciality cuisine! The famed Hida beef is what is highly recommended by visitors and locals alike. Some say the pristine water of Takayama is the secret of why the beef is so good, and others say it's gotta be the intense marbling of the beef itself.

◉ Zuiryu-ji Temple
Address: Toyama, Takaoka, Sekihonmachi, 35
Opening hours: 9AM-4:30PM
◉ World heritage site Gokayama
Address: Ainokura, Nanto, Toyama
Opening hours: -
◉ World heritage site Shirakawa-go
Address: Ogimachi, Shirakawa, Ono District, Gifu
Opening hours: -
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The final day of your Japan adventure offers a variety of experiences. You'll start the day with a quick train journey over to a small, hidden gem of a mountain village before taking a comfortable train ride after lunch. Upon arriving, you can do some shopping for authentic Japanese knives and then enjoy a last night out in the bright lights of Nagoya.

Hida Furukawa

Hida Furukawa is a charming village full of picturesque streets lined with historic wooden buildings seemingly taken straight from a picture book. Hida Furukawa exudes a bit of a calmer atmosphere, exemplified by its canals full of colorful carp that flow through the streets. Cypress, matsu pine, and cedar trees are abundant in this idyllic little town. A perfect place to stroll!

Seki terrace

Only a 15-minute walk away, Seki Terrace is a fantastic place to buy authentic Japanese knives. Renknowned for their sharp edges and classic design, Japanese knives have been a staple in high-end kitchens across the world. In a city known for its cutlery, be sure to buy a few to sharpen your kitchen skills at home.

Stay at Nagoya Gate Tower Hotel

Nagoya has countless hotels and lodging options. However, what better way to end the adventure then to be in the middle of it all, connected to Nagoya Station? The Nagoya Gate Tower Hotel is ideal after a long day of travel. The rooms start at the 18th floor, ensuring birdseye views of the dazzling city lights. The Nagoya Gate Tower Hotel is a fine option for those needing to take the journey to the airport in the morning.

◉ Hida Furukawa
Address: 8-5 Furukawacho Tonomachi, Hida, Gifu
Opening hours: -
◉ Seki terrace
Address: 4 Chome-12, 1 Heiwadori, Seki, Gifu
Opening hours: 9AM-5PM (Closed on Tuesday)
◉ Nagoya Gate Tower Hotel
Address: 1 Chome-1-3 Meieki, Nakamura Ward, Nagoya, Aichi
Opening hours: -
Tap here for useful tickets!

Click here for the tour MAP!