Our Two-Week Japan Itinerary With Teens

Hey there! Planning a trip to Japan? Wondering where you should go and what you should do?

I know exactly how you feel!

My family visited Japan in June 2023. My teens were ages 16 and 19. We flew in and out of Tokyo and there was SO MUCH we wanted to do and SO MANY details to figure out that we felt overwhelmed at first.

We did a lot of research in the months before our trip and decided to visit Tokyo, Kyoto, and Hiroshima. We focused on the highlights of each city and the activities that my family would enjoy most.

This itinerary is filled with fun activities for kids and teens. My daughter was in charge of the first draft and my husband and I took it from there. And then we made changes during the trip. This itinerary is what we actually did, which is a little different from what we planned.

Be sure to check out these articles too: 12 Tips for Your First Trip to Japan and What Does a Trip to Japan Cost? With this itinerary, they should help make planning your trip to Japan faster and easier!

Here’s our two-week Japan itinerary, with tips for making the most of your trip.

Day 1 – Tokyo

  • Arrive at Haneda Airport. We arrived in the afternoon.
  • Take care of your Customs form online, in advance at https:www.vjw.digital.go.jp
  • Pick up our Japan Wireless portable Wifi device at the airport.
  • Exchange JR voucher or buy JR (Japan Rail) Pass at the airport office. We waited in a long, hot line for this and could have done it later at any JR train station, so this is optional if you don’t need to ride a JR train immediately.
  • Buy a Suica Card (or other transportation card) at an airport machine to take the train from the airport. Public transportation worked well for us. The train is clean, safe, and efficient in Japan. Google Maps helped us find the most efficient and least expensive routes.
  • Check in to JR East Hotel Mets Tokyo Bay Shinkiba. We chose this hotel because it was two train stops from Tokyo Disneyland, had easy train access to the rest of Tokyo, and was moderately priced.
  • By the time we had done all that, plus the time difference, we were EXHAUSTED. We ate dinner from a convenience store and spent the evening settling in at our hotel.

Day 2 – Tokyo

  • Toyosu or Tsukiji Fish Markets – Jet lag will probably wake you up early, and these are good early-morning activities. We chose Tsukiji, but Toyosu is newer. Eat breakfast here at one (or more) of the many food stalls.
  • TeamLab Planets – This interactive museum is fun with kids and teens. It’s popular, and reservations were required at the time of our visit. Wear short or loose pants. You will walk through water up to your knees in one exhibit.
  • Hachi Statue and Shibuya Crossing – The Hachiko Statue is a famous Tokyo landmark and Shibuya Crossing is one of the most busy and famous intersections in the world. You’ll find both just outside of Shibuya Station.
  • Lunch at Gusto Cafe – This family-friendly chain restaurant overlooks Shibuya Crossing. The food wasn’t amazing (it reminded me of Denny’s), but everyone found something they liked. Bonus: You order on an iPad and a robot brings your food. 
  • Shopping in Shibuya – If you like to shop, there are a lot of familiar and new (to us) stores in the malls surrounding Shibuya Crossing.
  • Meiji-Jinko Shrine and Yoyagi Park – The shrine is in Yoyagi Park. It’s lovely, historic, and peaceful.
  • Takeshita Dori – This narrow, crowded shopping street is in the heart of the Harajuku neighborhood and it’s fun to wander down it. We stopped at Marion Crepes for a delicious snack.
  • Our dinner plans were thwarted (long story), but many restaurants are nearby. We just did convenience store food again at our hotel. Convenience stores in Japan are awesome. Look for 7-11, Family Mart, or Lawson’s on every corner.

Related: Tips for Dealing With Jet Lag

Days 3 and 4 – Tokyo

  • Tokyo Disneyland Resort – We are Disney people and we spent two precious days at Tokyo Disneyland Resort – one at Disneyland and one at Disney Sea. It was SO FUN and I highly recommend it if you love Disney parks too. Be sure to read all my tips for visiting Tokyo Disney Resort.

Related: Tips for Visiting Tokyo Disneyland Resort

Day 5 – Tokyo

  • Check out of Shinkiba Hotel. Check into Richmond Hotel Premier Asakusa International. This hotel was more centrally located in a historic part of Tokyo. We loved this location and this was our favorite hotel.
  • Senso-ji Shrine – one of the most popular and colorful shrines in Tokyo. It was practically next door to our hotel.
  • Nakamise Dori – shopping at small street stalls around Senso-ji
  • Shopping at Don Quijote – this is a chain department store in Japan. It’s a great place to stock up on inexpensive snacks and souvenirs.
  • Ghibli Museum – We love Studio Ghibli movies and were lucky to get tickets to this popular and whimsical museum. Reservations sell out in minutes. We enjoyed it, but it’s located in the suburbs of Tokyo and it’s a small museum. If you are not a hardcore fan, don’t worry if you miss this one.

Day 6 – Tokyo

  • Shopping in Asakusa, the neighborhood around our hotel
  • Conveyor Belt Sushi at Kura Flagship in Asakusa – this is a chain restaurant, but we had never done conveyor belt sushi before. It was a lot of fun!
  • Yayoi Kusama Museum – Modern art museum in Shinjuku. It’s a popular and acclaimed museum, but it’s also small and not close to other attractions. My family likes modern art but didn’t think this museum was worth it unless you love Yayoi Kusama.
  • Shinjuku sightseeing – Bright colors, flashing lights, Godzilla statue on the hotel roof… that’s the Shinjuku neighborhood of Tokyo.
  • Tokyo Skytree – There are two or three tall towers where you can see all of Tokyo, This is the one that we chose. Make reservations in advance. Lots of shopping here too!

Day 7 – Hiroshima

  • Travel to Hiroshima on Shinkansen (bullet train/JR Pass). 4-5 hours. Made reservations at a train station kiosk in advance to be sure we all got seats together.
  • Check in to Capsule Hotel CUBE. A capsule hotel is a uniquely Japanese experience, and we are glad we did it for one night. This hotel has a walkable downtown location. Ages 16+ only. Men and women on different floors. Great price. The beds were not very comfortable, but our teens didn’t notice.
  • Atomic Bomb Dome, Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum and Park – There was one building left standing after the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima and the Atomic Bomb Dome still stands as a reminder of that day. The Peace Memorial Park is a beautiful public park. The museum was well done and worthwhile, but sobering.
  • Dinner at Okonomiyaki Village – This was one of our favorite meals of the trip – especially for my vegetarian son who had a hard time finding good vegetarian food in Japan. Imagine three floors of stalls, all serving okonomiyaki. It’s a pancake loaded with meat, eggs, vegetables, and other toppings. It was easy to customize for individual preferences.

Related: 12 Tips for Your First Trip to Japan

Day 8 – Hiroshima

  • Check out of the capsule hotel. Store luggage in lockers at the train station.
  • Train and ferry to Miyajima Island. Both the train and ferry were included on our JR Pass.
  • Floating Torii Gate – a 10-minute walk from the ferry. May be underwater or not, depending on the tides. We did not pay to go inside Itsukushima Shrine.
  • Daisho-in Temple – We meant to go to this one, but I think we actually saw Daigan-ji. It’s smaller, closer to the Torii Gate, and also lovely.
  • Shopping and Street Food on Miyajima Omotesando – If you like oysters, this is a good place for them. We ate lunch here.
  • Wild Deer – These animals wander all over near the ferry. They are cute but can be a little aggressive.
  • Ferry/Train back to Hiroshima main station
  • Travel by Shinkansen (bullet train/JR Pass) to Kyoto – about 1 hour 40 minutes
  • Public transit to Ranzan hotel – this was a ryokan in Arashiyama where we had the option of a traditional Japanese room with futons on the floor or a Western-style room. We chose the traditional Japanese room.

Day 9 – Kyoto

  • Iwatayama Monkey Park – I skipped this one because of the uphill hike, but my husband and kids enjoyed seeing monkeys in the wild. It was just across the famous Togetsu-kyo Bridge from our hotel.
  • Tenryu-ji – this lovely Buddhist temple was next to our hotel.
  • Arashiyama Bamboo Forest – accessible from several points in Arashiyama. We entered near Tenryu-ji. It gets crowded. My husband and daughter returned early in the morning on our last day to get photos without other people. Walk through as much of it as you like.
  • Lunch in Arashiyama – there are lots of fun places here and most of them close before dinner
  • Public transit to Kinkaku-ji (Golden Palace) – one of the top sights in Kyoto
  • Ryoan-ji Temple – Walk from Kinkaku-ji for a famous rock garden. Uncrowded and peaceful by comparison.

Day 10 – Kyoto

  • Fushimi Inari – Famous red Torii gates. We arrived early to avoid the crowds and are glad we did. Hike up as far as you want
  • Nijo Castle – Historic Imperial Palace
  • Lunch at Menbaka – short walk from Nijo Castle. FUN ramen restaurant with a vegetarian set menu option. Expect a wait.
  • Higashiyama District/Kiyomizu-dera Temple – winding streets with traditional shops and famous temples
  • Gion neighborhood  – historic geisha district
  • Nishiki Market – food stalls and shopping in downtown Kyoto

Day 11 – Kyoto

  • Scenic train trip from Arashiyama to Kameoka
  • Karaoke in downtown Kyoto
  • Shopping/Nishiki Market in downtown Kyoto  – we were too tired to enjoy these places the first time, so we went back
  • Gion/Dinner in Pontocho Alley

Day 12 –  Kyoto to Tokyo

  • Travel to Tokyo on Shinkansen – about 3 hours
  • Flight leaves Haneda Airport in the afternoon

Related: What Does a Trip to Japan Cost?

Alternate/Additional Activities

We walked 15,000-20,000 steps per day on our trip and were worn out by the end of the trip. But the pace and variety of activities fit our family’s personality and goals.

If we had more time or were to do a couple of things differently, here are some activities we considered, but didn’t do. 


  • Imperial Palace and Tokyo Station neighborhood
  • Dinner or karaoke in Roppongi neighborhood
  • Shopping/sightseeing in Akihabara neighborhood
  • Ueno Park
  • Tokyo National Museum


  • Day trip to Nara
  • Philosopher’s Path – more shrines and temples


This is a city we would have loved to visit! Next time…


Japan was a dream trip! Honestly, it wasn’t my dream before we went and I felt sleep-deprived and a little overwhelmed during most of it. But as I reflect on all the beautiful and interesting places we visited there, I long to return. It’s one of my favorite trips.

I hope that our experience helps your family plan a great trip to Japan!

Happy travels!

Hi there! I am the founder of Tips for Family Trips. I am a married mom of two children, ages 14 and 17, living near Salt Lake City, Utah. We took our first child on a two-week road trip when she was four weeks old and we have been traveling as a family ever since. We love to get out of the house to see and do fun things, both far away and in our own neighborhood.

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