• TOKYO
  • HIROSHIMA

WATERSIDE BEAUTY

After taking in the metropolitan sights of the Tokyo Bay coastal area, take a journey to Itsukushima Shrine, a World Heritage Site floating in the sea. Then head to Onomichi, at the crossroads of the Seto Inland Sea. A trip to experience a Japan encompassed by the sea as the gentle ocean breeze blows around you.

Official Tokyo Travel Guide
http://www.gotokyo.org/en/

Local government official website
http://visithiroshima.net/

TRAVELER

  • Traveled : July 2017 Shem Hooda
    Reside in USA
  • Traveled : July 2017 Andrew Curry
    Reside in Tokyo
    Home country: USA

John F. Kennedy International Airport

JAL005 Examine the directions from your country

  • Shem Hooda

    After flying multiple international routes in the past and experiencing my fair share of long haul flights, I must say that this Japan Airlines flight was one of my favorites. With more legroom than I've experienced in previous economy cabins, impressive in-flight service, delicious meals, and variety of movies to keep me entertained, the time flew by and before I knew it, I was in Tokyo!

Haneda Airport

Tokyo Metropolitan Area

Day1

TOKYO

Tokyo City Viewmore

Tokyo City View, situated in the heart of Tokyo, features an indoor observation gallery 250 meters above sea level and an outdoor Sky Deck 270 meters above sea level. It commands a view of landmarks such as Tokyo Tower and TOKYO SKYTREE, and on a clear day even Mt. Fuji. The Sky Deck is a special space open to the sky and breeze.

  • Shem Hooda

    You can't leave Tokyo without taking in the sights, sounds and 360-degree views from the Tokyo Roppongi Hills Skydeck. You'll get a dazzling view of the city as far as the eye can see.

    After a breathtaking view of Tokyo from Roppongi Hills, we made our way to Mouri Gardens and leisurely walked around, enjoying the scenery.

  • Andrew Curry

    The Sky Deck is the tallest outdoor observatory towering 270 meters above sea level in the Kanto region and, along with City View, offer an unobstructed, and mighty impressive 360-degree view of Tokyo and the surrounding areas. You visit at night, you would not be disappointed. For it is at night when the city truly comes alive with the all glitter and glow of the buildings below.

    After taking in the 360-degree panorama of Tokyo from the Sky Deck Observatory, a relaxing way to ground oneself again can be found in the nearby Mohri Garden adjacent to the TV Asahi Bldg. Hydrangeas bloom in summer and cherry blossoms bloom in spring in this small, yet oasis-like garden in the middle of Roppongi.

Tokyo Metro Hibiya Line
Roppongi Station → Ginza Station
About 10 minutes / 170 yen

  • Shem Hooda

    Our first meal was lunch at Kakiyasu and they definitely did not disappoint. Our guide suggested we dip our meat and vegies in a bowl of raw egg for the traditional Sukiyali flavor and texture, and although I was a bit nervous to try this, I'm so glad I did -- it was so delicious! I would highly recommend coming here to try their Sukiyaki and get an authentic Japanese dining experience.

  • Andrew Curry

    Kakiyasu is a traditional sukiyaki restaurant in Tokyo's Ginza district. The staff are beautifully dressed in traditional kimono and the attention to service and detail is world-class. Besides being incredibly delicious, the presentation of the meal was art-like and added something special to an already heightened dining experience.

The Kimono Gallerymore

Tokyo is the center of Japan and Ginza is the center of Tokyo. Because Ginza beautifully fuses Japanese traditional clothing culture with modern shopping districts, one can dress themselves in elegant finery freely and set foot in Ginza, the Imperial Palace, Tokyo Station, Tsukiji, and the Kabuki-za. We will assist you in making a memory of a beautiful and fun day out.
You don't need to bring anything to enjoy the Kimono Experience, our rentals include everything from free fitting to simple hair arrangements and hair ornaments.
Men and women can both participate and single travelers are also welcome.
Our staff speak English and Chinese. Foreign guests are very welcome.

  • Shem Hooda

    When in Japan, I highly recommend renting a Kimono and strolling around to get the full experience. I had so much fun learning about kimonos in Japan and felt like a true local.

  • Andrew Curry

    No trip to Japan is complete until you don a traditional kimono or yukata and take a leisurely stroll about town.The Kimono Gallery in Ginza offers kimono and yukata rentals for travelers. The staff is attentive, friendly, and knowledgeable and they will do their best to match you to a kimono or yukata that fits your personality.

    Tsuruya Yoshinobu is a 200-plus-year-old confectionery store, offers traditional Japanese sweets made from glutinous rice, flour and sugar. It is recommended to sit at the bar to watch as the master craftsmen carefully sculpt the treats.

    The Nihonbashi district of Tokyo first gained prominence in the 17th century due to it being the eastern terminus for the Tokaido and Nakasendo roads that connected Edo (Tokyo) and Kyoto. It is recommended to walk over the bridge, paying particular attention while crossing to the lion statues that adorn the bridge on either side.

Walk
20 minutes

SKY BUS TOKYO(Odaiba Night Course)more

RECOMMENDED DESTINATIONS

On the Odaiba Night Course, the two-story open-deck SKYBUS TOKYO takes passengers to see the Tokyo Tower lit up against the night sky and also goes directly beneath the Rainbow Bridge. Since the SKYBUS TOKYO also takes highways along the way, passengers can feel like they are on a theme park attraction.
The SKYBUS TOKYO stops at Aqua City in Odaiba and allows passengers one hour of free time to get something to eat or take a commemorative photo with the Statue of Liberty and Rainbow Bridge in the background.
This two-hour tour is the perfect way to enjoy many of Tokyo's night spots in a short amount of time.

  • Shem Hooda

    Taking the open air Sky Bus is an incredible way to see the city. I recommend an evening tour so you can see Tokyo by day, catch sunset and also get a glimpse of the city lit up at night. If it happens to rain, don't worry: the tour bus provides you with ponchos to help keep you dry!

    On our open air Sky Bus tour, we hopped off in Aqua City Odaiba for dinner. We stopped in at Takadaya and I had soba noodles -- it was so yummy and the perfect escape from the rain we encountered.

  • Andrew Curry

    The Sky Bus Tokyo double-decker bus is as enjoyable as it is informative. And for those of you who do not speak Japanese, fear not, for headphones are provided, free of charge, allowing one to plug into the in-seat audio jack to take advantage of the guided audio tour. This audio service is offered in English, Korean and Chinese.

    Soba noodles are the perfect meal for after taking in the sights and sounds of Tokyo from the open-air Sky Bus Night Tour. Made every day from scratch in-house, these noodles take on a lighter and more aromatic quality than traditional soba noodles.
    Takadaya overlooks the Rainbow Bridge and is located in Aqua City in Odaiba.

Walk

Hotel Metropolitan Tokyo Marunouchi

  • Shem Hooda

    When in Tokyo, I highly recommend staying at Hotel Metropolitan Tokyo Marunouchi, located in downtown near Tokyo Station. I loved being able to spot the Tokyo Skytree straight from my window and the sunrise and sunset views are pretty amazing too. The breakfast buffet at their on-site restaurant offers a variety of Japanese as well as Western options and also boasts a beautiful view of the city.

  • Andrew Curry

    The Tokyo Metropolitan Hotel Marunouchi, located just outside Tokyo Station, offers both convenience and luxury. The rooms are spacious with generous views of the city, the en-suite amenities are ample, and the beds are soft while still being supportive.

Day2

CHUGOKU(HIROSHIMA)

Haneda Airportmore

The airport serves as an air gateway for Tokyo. The passenger terminal is filled with various commercial facilities, and visitors can command a panoramic view of Tokyo Bay from the rooftop observation deck, so that every one, even those who are not flying, can enjoy the terminal.

JAL (JAL Japan Explorer Pass) Show details

  • Shem Hooda

    Bright and early, we headed to the airport to make our way to Hiroshima. Our flight took off on time and arrived without a hitch!

  • Andrew Curry

    Haneda Airport is located just a short 45-minute train ride from almost anywhere in central Tokyo and thus is very convenient. Our flight was extremely punctual, and the comfort of the airport was top notch.

Hiroshima Airportmore

Hiroshima Airport is located 15 minutes away by bus from its nearest station--JR Shiraichi Station. It takes approximately 50 minutes from Shiraishi Station to Hiroshima Station, and 1 hour 20 minutes to Miyajimaguchi Station, which is the entrance to Miyajima, a world renowned site for the floating torii gate in the ocean. There are direct limousine bus services that connect Hiroshima Airport to downtown Hiroshima, including Hiroshima Station and Hiroshima Bus Center. Also, a direct bus runs between the airport and Onomichi Station, providing access to Seto Inland Sea.

Hiroshima Airport Limousine Bus
Hiroshima Airport → Hiroshima Bus Center
About 51 minutes / 1,340 yen

  • Shem Hooda

    Micchan went above and beyond to give us an amazing dining experience. You must get the Okonomiyaki, a Japanese specialty described as a savory pancake made of flour, cabbage, noodles and varied ingredients layered on top of one another, smothered in a tangy sauce and cooked in front of you on an iron grill. The Okonomiyaki was absolutely delicious and extremely filling.

    After a delicious lunch, we went straight to the Hiroshima Orizuru Tower and began our tour of the 50 meter tall building. This tower is one of the newest additions to the area and offers calm and peaceful atmosphere.

  • Andrew Curry

    Micchan is known for their take on okonomiyaki (Japanese-style pancake), and it was delicious. We ordered a set menu and were surprised by the volume of food that arrived, yet everything was so good we ate almost all of it.

    The Orizuru Tower observation deck was beautifully designed using Japanese Sugi and Hinoki woods, and it was an excellent way to be introduced to Hiroshima from above and to see the Peace Memorial Park for the first time.

Walk
10 minutes

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park more

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park is a large park established in the heart of Hiroshima near the center of the atomic bomb blast in hopes of sustained world peace. The park includes a number of points of interest such as the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum which documents Hiroshima in the time of the bombing, the Hiroshima Peace Memorial, or Genbaku Dome, the cenotaph of bomb victims, the Hiroshima National Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims, and International Conference Center Hiroshima. The Hiroshima Peace Bell that is rung in hopes of peace on Earth is designated as one of Japan's top 100 soundscapes by the Ministry of the Environment.

  • Shem Hooda

    Next, we made our way to the Peace Memorial Park where you can see the iconic remains of the Industrial Promotion Hall destroyed by the atomic bomb during WWII. Although quite somber, there is so much to learn and appreciate at this UNESCO World Heritage Site. Walking around the park and museum was so surreal -- it's something that definitely should not be missed.

  • Andrew Curry

    Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park exists as a solemn reminder of not only the complete devastation, suffering and destruction caused by a nuclear bomb, but also the tragedies and suffering inherent to war itself. The park is located city center and features such notable symbols as the Atomic Bomb Dome, Children's Peace Monument, Rest House, and the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum.

Hiroshima Electric Railway
Genbaku Dome-mae Station-Yokogawa Station
11 minutes / 160 yen

JR Yokogawa Station-JR Miyajimaguchi Station
23 minutes / 320 yen

Miyajimaguchi Port-Miyajima Port
10 minutes / 180 yen

  • Shem Hooda

    From Hiroshima, we took a ferry to the island of Miyajima via the World Heritage Sea Route with Aqua Net Hiroshima. This is the fastest and most scenic way to get from the Peace Memorial Park to Miyajima.

  • Andrew Curry

    I am always keen to travel by boat, and the World Heritage Sea Route did not disappoint. It took us a good 45 minutes to reach Miyajima from the port, but it was a nice ride.

Miyajima (Itsukushima Shrine)more

Miyajima has been regarded as a sacred island since ancient times. In 1996, about 14% of the island became designated as a World Heritage Site, including the palatial style building of Itsukushima Shrine, the sea in front of the shrine where the grand torii gate stands, and old growth forest on Mt. Misen behind it. The highlight on a visit to Miyajima is the Itsukushima Shrine, which appears to float in the ocean but also blends in with the mountain in its backdrop forming an elegant scene. The grand torii gate built offshore is the symbol of Miyajima, which can be accessed on foot during low tide while it is partially submerged in water at high tide. The lighting condition during sunset presents the island in a mystic way backlit behind the grand torii gate, Itsukushima Shrine, and five-storied pagoda, providing a distinctive view from the daytime. The island has native animals including deer, which are regarded and protected as divine messengers.

  • Shem Hooda

    The Itsukushima Shrine attracts visitors from all over the world to witness its magnificent beauty. During high tide, Itsukushima Shrine and the O-Torii gate appear to be floating on water. During low tide, you can actually make your way to the O-Torii Gate by foot !

    If you thought the Itsukushima Shrine and O-Torii gate were beautiful during the day, you'll be mesmorized when you see it lit up at night. Glimmering lights give the gate a beautiful glow along with the illuminated nightscape to compliment the shining sea.

  • Andrew Curry

    Itsukushima Shrine and surrounding area are listed in and protected under the UNESCO World Heritage site conventions. The island is accessible via ferry from the port located near Miyajimaguchi Station or via boat from Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park.

    The illuminated nightscape is an extraordinary way to experience the torii at Itsukushima Shrine. It glows bright orange with the illumination and lends itself well to night photography, especially long-exposure photography. The area became peaceful and reflective at night.

Itsukushima Shrine-Kikunoya
5 minutes
0 yen

Kikunoyamore

Kikunoya is a hotel located on Miyajima Island. Guestrooms facing the water provide commanding views of the Seto Inland Sea and the grand torii gate below. Guestrooms facing the mountain are perfect for nature lovers to take in the grandeur of Miyajima. Meals at the hotel feature a seasonal flare, with a focus on freshly caught seafood sourced from fishing ports along the Seto Inland Sea.
After dinner, be sure to take a walk around the island to experience a quieter and calmer side of this popular tourism spot, which is very busy during the daytime. At night, both Itsukushima Shrine and the grand torii gate in the water are illuminated.

  • Shem Hooda

    This was my first time staying the night in a traditional Ryokan. I gained a true sense of the traditional Japanese-style accommodation and hospitality. After a long day of exploring, it was the best feeling to take a bath in the Onsen. Dinner and breakfast at Hotel Kikunoya was absolutely divine. With amazing customer service, clean and comfortable accommodations, delicious food and an amazing view of the O-Torii Gate.

  • Andrew Curry

    The rooms at Kikunoya Ryokan were clean, comfortable and, most of all, offered unobstructed views of the torii at Itsukushima Shrine. The staff was attentive, and the service was excellent.

Day3

Kikunoya

  • Shem Hooda

    This sea kayak experience was like none other. We loaded into our individual kayaks and made our way to Itsukushima Shrine. But perhaps the most incredible feeling was kayaking through the O-Torii Gate of the shrine.

    A visit to Hiroshima isn't complete without trying its famous oysters! Hiroshima's were some of the best I've ever had. In one lunch set at Kakiya, I had a total of 10 oysters cooked 5 different ways. I highly recommend stopping in at Kakiya for lunch.

  • Andrew Curry

    Kayaking around the torii of Itsukushima was a highlight of our trip. The tour guide was knowledgeable and did his best to show us a fun time. I would recommend this to other travelers to Itsukushima.

    We enjoyed a delicious meal of oysters, prepared many different ways, at Kakiya on Itsukushima Island. The dining area was lit nicely with natural light streaming in from the large floor-to-ceiling windows.

Kikunoya-Miyajima Port
10 minutes
0 yen
(the hotel shuttle has a bus sign on the vehicle)

Miyajima Port → Miyajimaguchi Port
About 10 minutes / 180 yen

JR Miyajimaguchi Station-JR Hiroshima Station
29 minutes / 410 yen

JR Hiroshima Station-JR Mihara Station
26 minutes / 2,290 yen

JR Mihara Station-JR Onomichi Station
13 minutes / 240 yen

Onomichimore

Onomichi City is located on the island of Honshu in Southeastern Hiroshima Prefecture. The city also includes the Shimanami Kaido connecting a number of islands in the Seto Inland Sea with Honshu and Shikoku.
The portion of Onomichi City on the island of Honshu features mountains to the north and the Seto Inland Sea to the south connected to the mountains by a gentle slope with views of the sea. The city has a unique topography with many hills. Its nostalgic ambience as a seaport town has seen Onomichi City used as a backdrop for a number of novels and movies.
Additionally, Buddhism flourished in this part of Japan, making it a great location for making the rounds at old temples and learning about Japan’s history and culture. Although it’s a seaport town, Onomichi City is also known as a cat town as well. Visitors are sure to encounter cats just about everywhere they go in the city. There is even the Cat Trail featuring stones with cat engravings, which is known as one of the newer destinations in the city. Onomichi City is a popular destination for bicycle enthusiasts because it is the gateway to the Shimanami Kaido, a road known as a bicycling Mecca.

  • Shem Hooda

    If you're looking for day trips to take from Hiroshima, you must make your way to Onomichi. We strolled through a retro shopping center known as Onomichi Hondori. We made our way to the Mt. Senkoji Ropeway, piled into a cart and were whisked to the top of Mt. Senkoji. Stunning 360 degree views of Onomichi gave us a stunning look at the entire town from above. On our way down, we strolled some cute cafes and various lookout points from which to admire the city views.

    For dinner, we took to an izakaya, which is an casual Japanese restaurant for after-work eating, drinking and socializing. The perfect place to unwind after a long day! I loved being able to try a variety of dishes and some authentic sake -- it was a fun and lively atmosphere to end a full day of exploring.

  • Andrew Curry

    The city of Onomichi is known for being the gateway to the Shimanami Kaido cycling route, as well as being known for its hilly geography, many Buddhist temples, and also having inspired many of Japan's artists, poets, and filmmakers with its natural beauty. Whether you are starting your cycling tour on the Shimanami Kaido, or just looking to spend a few days in a beautiful and culturally rich town, you can't go wrong with Onomichi.

    We had a great dining experience at Tamaganzou. We enjoyed many seafood dishes and drank some bright and clean Hiroshima-produced sake. Overall, it was an enjoyable dining experience.

JR Onomichi Station-U2
5 minutes / 0 yen

ONOMICHI U2more

Onomichi U2 was opened in March 2014 as an entryway to the Shimanami Kaido, a holy ground for cyclists. Its stylish exterior was renovated from an old storehouse located along the Onomichi Channel, and it is fully equipped with lodging accommodations, a café, a restaurant, and a bar. There is also a shop where visitors can buy products related to the Setouchi area.
This facility supports a pleasant cycling experience with services such as allowing overnight guests to bring their bicycles to their room after check-in, on-site professional bicycle maintenance staff, on-request bicycle shipping to the desired cycling start point, and even pick-up service for the way home.
In addition to cycling, feel free to ask the staff about activities to get your fill of the area and other ways to have fun, such as cruises in the Seto Inland Sea and walks in the hills of Onomichi.

  • Shem Hooda

    U2, also known as Hotel Cycle, was probably one of the most well-designed hotels I've had the pleasure of staying at. This warehouse turned cycling-themd hotel was such a fun and unique accommodation. Comfy personalized pajama sets and a delicioius breakfast spread made for a lovey stay!

  • Andrew Curry

    The room at U2 Cycle Hotel was modern, clean, well appointed and comfortable. Breakfast in the morning was delicious.

Day4

ONOMICHI U2

U2-Onomichi Port
5 minutes / 0 yen

Onomichi Port-Setoda Port
39 minutes
1,050 yen

Setoda Port-Setoda-cho Tourist Information Rental Cycle Terminal
10 minutes / 0 yen

Shimanami Kaido Cyclingmore

The Shimanami Kaido Cycling Route spans a total length of about 70km connecting Onomichi City, Hiroshima Prefecture and Imabari City, Ehime Prefecture with six bridges traversing the many islands dotting the area. It was selected by CNN as one of the world’s most incredible bike routes.
Cyclists can enjoy an exhilarating ride above the ocean while gazing out at the ocean and many islands, which has earned the area the nickname of the Aegean Sea of the Orient.
Bicycle rentals are available at shops along the Shimanami Kaido Cycling Route.

  • Shem Hooda

    On our last day in Hiroshima, we cycled along the Shimanami Kaido. The cycling route is well marked and well maintained, so I highly recommend cycling as much of the route as you can and stopping to take in the spectacular views, just as we did.

    After cycling the Shimanami Kaido, we decided to stop for a ramen in Ikuchijima called Sayo. We couldn't resist trying a bowl of their famous lemon ramen! I finally had my ramen fix and it was totally worth the wait.

  • Andrew Curry

    The Shimanami Kaido Cycling Route is a 70-km bike path that stretched from Onomichi in Hiroshima Prefecture, down to Imabari in Ehime Prefecture. You can rent bicycles from one of the roughly 13 rental stations along the way. While on this particular trip, we only cycled a short section of the Shimanami Kaido, we still very much enjoyed this experience.

    We ended up eating at a local ramen shop called Sayo. This ramen shop was unique in that it served lemon ramen. It was a pleasure to be able to try such a uniquely flavored ramen.

Setodacho Tourist Information Rental Cycling Terminal-Setoda Port
10 minutes on foot / 0 yen

Setoda Port-Onomichi Port
39 minutes / 1,050 yen

Onomichi Port-JR Onomichi Station
2 minutes / 0 yen

JR Onomichi Station-JR Shiraichi Station
45 minutes / 760 yen

JR Shiraichi Station-Hiroshima Airport
15 minutes / 390 yen

Hiroshima Airport

JAL (JAL Japan Explorer Pass) Show details

Haneda Airport

  • Shem Hooda

    I had a wonderful time exploring Tokyo and Hiroshima like a local. The only way to truly experience a place is to fully immerse yourself in the culture. The people, the food, the landscapes and the range of activities never ceased to amaze me.

  • Andrew Curry

    Overall I had an enjoyable experience on this trip. Tokyo was fun, what I enjoyed most was our time spent in Hiroshima, Itsukushima and Onomichi. It was all memorable, and I will be sure to recommend this route to my friends in the future when they visit Japan.

RECOMMENDATIONS FROM TRAVELERS

After taking in the sights, sounds and flavors of Tokyo, make your way to Hiroshima to discover impressive landscapes, food and activities unlike ever before. Beyond its two World Heritage Sites and its special place in history, Hiroshima's mountainous islands, distinctive culture and unique flavors will steal your heart, just as it did mine.

Shem Hooda
Travel Blogger
Reside in USA
  • Hobby

    Travel, Adventure, Photography

  • Number of visits to Japan

    First time

RECOMMENDATIONS FROM TRAVELERS

A brief recommendation about the tour:
Japan is a land replete with beauty, natural wonder and enchantment. Tokyo is a must-see for anyone seeking some of the country's best dining, coolest cafes/bars and world-class shopping, while Hiroshima and the surrounding areas offer a chance to explore Japan's quieter and more reflective side. Hiroshima is especially significant for those looking to explore not only the country's natural beauty and charm but also to gain a better understanding of the history and resilience of the Japanese spirit.

Andrew Curry
Photographer
Reside in Tokyo
Home country: USA
  • Hobby

    Photography, cycling

  • Length of stay in Tokyo

    2.5 Years

Other recommended route in same area

Share this page

Recommended Transportation

Recommended scenic routes

Other attractive routes

Back to Top

COPYRIGHT © CHUGOKU+SHIKOKU × TOKYO ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.