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The Complete 2-week Itinerary for Japan with kids

Updated: Mar 27, 2022

Planning a trip with kids can mean that you’ll have a few extra things to consider. Will it be fun for the little ones? Which places are kid-friendly, yet interesting enough for the adults? If you’re looking for the perfect place to take the family, Japan is the ultimate destination for possibly the best family vacation you’ll ever have. Drawing from our family’s own experience traveling from Tokyo to Kyoto and Osaka, here’s a full itinerary for 2 weeks in Japan, complete with fun-filled destinations and culturally enriching spots to check out; plus of course, delicious food!

Before You Go: Planning & Preparation

2 weeks in Japan will give you and your family plenty of time to really dive deep and explore what the country has to offer. Tokyo itself is massive and has plenty of places to visit, but traveling down south to Kyoto and Osaka will really give you a well-rounded experience of Japan.

So, what’s the best way to travel, and how should you get around? Luckily we’ve already done all the planning so you don’t have to! Here are 2 things you need to do before you go:

1. If you can, purchase plane tickets to arrive at Narita or Haneda airport (Tokyo), and depart from Kansai International Airport (Osaka)

2. Purchase a Japan Rail Pass (JR Pass), valid for 7 days, for every member of the family

The JR Pass made traveling by bullet train really easy and affordable, and by departing from Osaka, we were able to avoid having to travel back to Tokyo again to catch our flight.

planniLargest Waterfalls In North Americang and preparation

Week 1: Tokyo

A week in Tokyo might seem like a long time, but trust me, there’s so much to see and do that there was never a dull moment. My daughter absolutely loved the city too!

For traveling around Tokyo, we used a Suica card, an easy top-up card for public transport, instead of our JR Passes. You can buy these at the ticket machines at every station.

Day 1 & Day 2: Tokyo Disneyland, Disney Sea

The Disneyland resort is located in between Narita airport and central Tokyo, so by heading there first we were able to avoid having to travel back and forth, saving us tons of time.

The kiddo had two fun-filled days at the Disney parks, but we found the experience really enjoyable as adults too. Disney Sea really stood out because it has a very different atmosphere compared to the other Disney parks we’ve been to- right at the centre of the park is a giant flaming volcano and a lake! The whole place feels like someplace out of a Jules Verne novel, so if you’re only going to visit just one of the parks instead of both, Disney Sea will be truly worth your time.

Tokyo Disneyland, Disney Sea

Day 3: Asakusa, Tokyo Skytree

Visit two of Tokyo’s biggest icons both traditional and modern: Senso-ji at Asakusa, and the towering Tokyo Skytree.

The Sensoji temple is the oldest Buddhist temple in Tokyo, and is the definitive place to get a taste of old Japanese culture. Take pictures in front of Kaminarimon, a gate with a giant lantern located at the entrance of the temple, and shop for souvenirs at the many stores leading up to the temple itself. Don’t forget to try some Ningyo-yaki- pastries that resemble little dolls. For lunch, look out for the many shops selling ten-don, rice topped with an assortment of ingredients fried tempura-style.

Next, head over to Tokyo Skytree to catch the best possible view of Tokyo from up above. On a clear day, you’ll also see Mt. Fuji. At the base of the tower is a large shopping mall, so head over there to snag some unique items and merchandise of Japanese characters. Kids will absolutely love the Pokemon Centre there too! There’s plenty to eat here too, so you’re sorted for teatime and dinner. While you’re there, try some of the matcha desserts at Nana’s Green Tea.

Day 4: Tsukiji Fish Market, Ueno Park & Zoo

The tuna fish auction has moved to Toyosu, but the Tsukiji Outer Market is still alive and well. There’s no need to wake up at the crack of dawn to get in line, visit the market any time during the day to sample all kinds of fresh seafood and other tasty treats. The thing to try here is a kaisen-don, a bowl of sushi rice topped with fresh raw seafood. For the kiddies, look out for sweet rice-flour pastries known as daifuku.

Ueno Park and Ueno Zoo makes for a fun way to spend the afternoon for the family. Stroll around the large complex, which consists of several art museums, the National Museum, a museum of science and nature, as well as the zoo. Admission is cheap for adults (¥610~) and some museums are free for children. If you and your kid love animals and dinosaurs, you’ll love it here.

Day 5: Meiji Jingu Shrine, Harajuku, & Shibuya

See what city life in downtown Tokyo is like when you head over to the bustling cities of Harajuku and Shibuya. Be prepared for a long day on your feet, shopping and exploring.

In Harajuku, the first place to visit right after you exit the station is Meiji Jingu Shrine. Unlike Senso-ji, this is a Shinto shrine with very different aesthetics. You’ll need to walk up a quiet, serene path to get to the shrine, and don’t forget to purify at the fountain before entering- there will be instructions to show you how!

Meiji Jingu Shrine

Next, take a short walk to Yoyogi Park, located right beside the shrine. The park is the most beautiful in spring, sakura trees shedding their petals all over the ground. At other times, it’s a nice and spacious park to play around in. A place that is a must-see is Takeshita Street, the infamous street in Harajuku that have inspired countless artists with it’s colourful, outrageous fashions and kawaii aesthetics. Be sure to grab a delicious cream-filled crepe, stalls are found anywhere along the street. Your kids will love Kiddy Land, which is truly a wonderland for kids, being chock full of toys and adorable characters.