All About Japan

TripAdvisor's Top 10 Japan Spots for 2018

Hakone Shoryudo Sapporo Kanazawa Yokohama Naha Tokyo Osaka Kyoto Fukuoka Okinawa Hokkaido Ishikawa Kanagawa Nagano Kanto Chubu Kansai Kyushu Koshinetsu

Choosing where to go in Japan can be a daunting task. There's so much to see, do, eat and enjoy that it can be a bit overwhelming! Thankfully, TripAdvisor can help us track down the best cities, towns and villages to visit to help newcomers narrow down their search. Let's dive in!

10. Hakuba-mura (Nagano)

Located on the snowy, northern side of Japan's Northern Alps, Hakuba-mura (白馬村), or Hakuba Village, was the perfect location in Japan to host the 1988 Winter Olympic Games. With the winter season packed with snow, it's a popular destination for skiers and snowboarders alike. Just don't forget to take a dip in the local hot springs afterward to relax those strained muscles!

9. Kanazawa (Ishikawa)

Another spot on the Japan Alps, Kanazawa—located in Ishiskawa Prefecture—offers a wide range of attractions , from the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art to food-hunting at Omicho Market. Famous for its gold leaf, the city also has a thing for putting gold over its snacks and drinks, from soft-serve ice cream to gold-leaf castella.

8. Yokohama (Kanagawa)

Located just south of Tokyo, this city is home to some major attractions including not one, but two famous ramen museums: Cupnoodles Museum Yokohama and the Shin-Yokohama Raumen Museum. If you fancy some cheap drinks to go with that ramen, head on over to Noge-cho, the city's old-school entertainment district.

Yokohama also boasts Japan's largest Chinatown, where you can get your hands on some delicious Chinese dumplings. Before heading back home, don't forget to grab some chocolate "Red Shoes"!

7. Naha (Okinawa)

The southernmost city to be featured on this list, Naha boasts Shuri Castle, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and former place of residence for Ryukyu royalty (Okinawa was once a vassal state of Japan called the Ryukyu Kingdom). If you're an adventurous drinker, try out Okinawa's famous alcohol, habushu, an awamori-based liquor mixed with herbs, honey and... pit viper. Of course, you could also just look into pottery in the Tsuboya area or take home a box of chinsuko cookies!

6. Hakone (Kanagawa)

Known as one of Japan's premier hot spring resort towns, Hakone is a great place to just relax and unwind. The town also features Hakone Kowakien Yunessun, which has over two dozen weird water attractions including a sake spa, a green tea spa, a coffee spa and a wine spa that's filled with real wine! For accommodation, why not stay at one of Ichinoyu Group's ryokan (Japanese-style inns), or perhaps at a ryokan designed after a Moon Princess?

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