Top 10 Ultimate Guide To The Best Attractive Places In Japan

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Hitachi Seaside Park over Mount Fuji in Japan.

Japan is a mystery – a land of contrasts between the best attractive places and ultra-modern technology. If you are here for the first time, you can easily conclude that this country is definitely one of the most picturesque places in the world. It presents a full scale of culture and raw landscape, avant-garde high rise buildings and ancient temples.

The most striking point of Japan is that it is a nation where it has always something to offer for everyone. No matter where you go, it evokes haunting memories that you will always nurture for the rest of your life. From significant castles to impressive parks, here’s a guide to the best places in the land of the rising sun that you have to see for yourself, some of which I’ve mentioned in my past blogs.

Attractive and Imposing Mount Fuji, Yamanashi & Shizuoka Prefectures

Mount Fuji with Lake Kawaguchi at the foreground.

Foremost on the list of the best attractive places in Japan is majestic Mount Fuji. Many visitors are captivated with its exceptional beauty and appearance which is seen from the cities of Tokyo to Yokohama though it is located between Yamanashi and Shizuoka Prefectures (near Tokyo). You can enjoy viewing Japan’s iconic mountain from afar or pursue a trail which also allows you to explore the nearby areas such as Arakurayama Sengen Park that houses Chureito Pagoda, a peace memorial or Lake Kawaguchi, one of the five lakes around Mount Fuji where you can vividly see the volcano’s reflection on its crystal clear waters.

Picturesque Imperial Palace, Tokyo

The East Gardens of Tokyo Imperial Palace.

Located at Chiyoda ward in Tokyo, the Imperial Palace is the main residence of the Japanese Imperial Family. Referred as “kokyo” in Japanese, this structure was built in 1869 where the former Edo Castle had once stood. While the palace itself is off-limits to the public, some parts of the palace grounds are open like the East Gardens where you can explore seasonal flowers, some remnants of Edo Castle, guard houses and other significant buildings.

Most Favored Ghibli Park, Nagakute, Aichi Prefecture

Castle in The Sky clock tower at Ghibli Park in Nagakute, Aichi Prefecture.

If you are familiar or a fan of Ghibli animated films (My Neighbor Totoro), one reason for you to travel to Japan is to explore the newly-opened (last November 1, 2022) Ghibli Park in Aichi Prefecture. This is not your usual theme park where there are rides but it features attractions from the movies produced by Studio Ghibli. And as soon as you’ve entered the gate, a fantastic world is waiting for you like the smiling Totoro, or the seating life-sized No-Face, indeed all you have to do is “take a stroll, feel the wind and discover the wonders” of Ghibli world.

The life-sized No-Face seating in a train at the Ghibli Park.

Picture-Postcard Sagano Bamboo Forest, Kyoto

Sagano Bamboo Forest in Kyoto.

Japan’s most famous bamboo forest and a picture-postcard spot in Kyoto, the Sagano Bamboo Forest or Arashiyama Bamboo Grove is a thicket of tall bamboo trees that create a spectacular sight and sound when you walk through the area. A must-see destination if you are in this city, the bamboo grove has always been a favored spot since 18th century Japan when the noble class used to visit the place for its ethereal beauty. Located at the western part of Kyoto, Sagano Bamboo Forest can be visited all year round and for the best experience sans the crowd, go there in the early morning or late in the evening.

Overwhelming Red Torii Gates of Fushimi Inari Shrine, Kyoto

The vermilion or red torii gates of Fushimi Inari Shrine in Kyoto.

Still located in Kyoto and one of the best attractive places to see in Japan is Fushimi Inari Shrine and its 10,000 red torii gates that serve as passages all the way to the summit of Mount Inari. Torii gates serve as entrance from the physical world (humans) to the sacred world of Shinto gods and at Fushimi Inari Shrine, these gates form a remarkable variation with the green color of the surroundings. Inari is the (Shinto) god of rice and the red or vermilion gates erected in his shrine were donated by Japanese businessmen throughout the centuries as a token of gratitude for the good fortunes they received.

Pretty Osaka Castle, Osaka

Osaka Castle during the sakura (spring) season.

Located at the center of Osaka and a major tourist destination, the 5-story Osaka Castle with a 450-year history is arguably one of the most elegant structures in Japan. Built by the feudal lord Hideyoshi Toyotomi in 1583 as a showcase of power and grandeur after unifying the country during the samurai era, the castle’s ultra-fine balance of color with its golden ornaments and aquamarine roof to its exquisite patterns and shapes that decorate each level are sights to behold. The surrounding parks are also worth exploring particularly during the sakura (cherry blossom) season in spring and in autumn’s koyo (falling leaves) season.

Fascinating Kiyomizu-dera Temple, Kyoto

Kiyomizu-dera Temple and its wooden terrace.

Best known for its 13-meter wooden terrace that overhangs from its main hall, Kiyomizu-dera is a UNESCO World Heritage Buddhist temple in Kyoto and built without the use of nails. Located in the historic Higashiyama District of the city’s eastern part, the temple’s terrace offers a stunning view of the whole metropolis and underneath are three streams of water (Otowa waterfall) believed to have healing powers when you drink from it. Behind the main hall is Jishu Shrine, the love deity and where you can find a pair of love stones that if you succeed in encircling the stones with your eyes closed then you will be lucky in love.

Uninterrupted Ashikaga Flower Park, Tochigi Prefecture

The wisteria and other flowers at Ashikaga Flower Park.

A famous destination in Tochigi Prefecture, Ashikaga Flower Park boasts a wide range of flowers that bloom in the different seasons but specifically the 100-year-old wisteria tree. This tree is a well-known plant in Japan that has long clusters of white, soft pink and violet flowers creating a tunnel that extend for tens of square meters. Located less than two hours from Tokyo in Ashikaga City, this park has other attractions such as the Rainbow Garden which displays a variety of roses or the Blue and White Garden filled with tulips, cherry trees, hydrangeas and iris.

Exotic Shirakawa-go Ancient Village, Gibu Prefecture

The ancient village of Shirakawa-go in Gifu Prefecture, Japan.

For the longest time, the historic village of Shirakawa-go in Gibu Prefecture of central Japan has been isolated from the outside world as it sits on a mountainous terrain and have to endure from heavy snowfall in winter. Famous for its well-defined architectural style, “gassho-zukuri” or triangular thatched roof, 250-year-old houses, this place is a must-see for any visitor who wants to uncover the well-preserved culture and traditions of Japanese rural life. Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995, it’s not only the wooden houses with roofs shaped like “clasped hands in prayer” that make this village one of the best attractive places to visit in Japan but its stunning scenery, being nestled in the Japanese Alps encompassed by rice fields and tall pine trees.

Shirakawa-go Village during wintertime.

Panoramic Baby Blue Eyes Flowers, Hitachi Seaside Park

Hitachi Seaside Park with baby blue eyes flowers.

Covering an area of 190 hectares with a diversity of flowers that bloom throughout the year, Hitachi Seaside Park is made more famous by the millions of baby blue eyes flowers or Nemophilia blossoms that thrive during the spring season. A picture-postcard space, the iconic blue flowers cover that whole Miharashi Hill of Hitachi Seaside Park that seems to resemble the color of the blue sky from late April to the middle of May each year. In autumn, the hill is covered by green kochia (summer cypress) bushes that turn to crimson red when the weather gets colder.

It’s either you want to explore the impressive castles and temples, spoil yourself in its distinct cuisine or soak in the country’s incredible scenery, a holiday in Japan guarantees a lot of best attractive places in every nook. It got the most efficient transportation system in the world like the Shinkansen or bullet rain, the people are friendly and they delight themselves on their neatness and orderliness. I am encouraging you to make a trip to this stunning nation at least once in your lifetime and you will never regret. There are numerous features and experiences here waiting for you to enjoy.


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