I just came back from an awesome trip to Tokyo and Fukushima where I saw unique art installations, ate at the best ramen shops and learned about the history of Fukushima. This is the second time I visited Japan but the first time visiting the Fukushima Prefecture and was more than excited to explore a new place. My itinerary was for 6 full days in Tokyo & Fukushima, I would, however, suggest adding a few more days to your trip for the best experience if you have the time to do so. Here’s how to spend 6 days in Tokyo & Fukushima.
DAY 1 – TOKYO
I had a red-eye flight with ANA from Los Angeles and it was one of the most comfortable flights I had. Once I got on the flight, I slept for most of the flight and woke up to 2 hours prior to arriving at Haneda Airport. The staff served us our meal which is also one of the best meals on a flight. The rice and fish are cooked perfectly and very fresh. I spent the last two hours watching movies and soon enough I’ve arrived in Tokyo. I arrived at 5 am, which gives me a full day to explore the city on my own. Here’s everything you need to know when visiting Tokyo.
DAY 2 – TOKYO
Do you enjoy visiting art museums? Tokyo has plenty of art galleries and exhibits to visit and here are a few of my favorites:
Mori Art Museum – Contemporary Art Museum in Roppongi Hills Mori Tower in the Roppongi Hills complex. Spend an hour or two learning about the exhibits and stop out to the observation deck at the Tokyo Sky View. One of the best views of Tokyo where you can see panoramic views of the skyline.
Complex665 – Is a newer museum which houses Tomio Koyama, Shugo Arts, and Taka Ishii exhibitions.
National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation – Located in the Odaiba area, the museum boasts a lot of futuristic exhibitions and it’s great for kids. They have daily shows with ASIMO, a humanoid robot that walks and talks.
After a full day of exploring the museums, stroll along the Corridor Gai Street and dine at Ohashi Ginza.
DAY 3 – AIZUWAKAMATSU, FUKUSHIMA
Take an early Shinkansen train to Aizuwakamatsu, Fukushima! I stayed at Harataki Ryokan. A very affordable, clean ryokan with awesome indoor and outdoor onsens! Make sure to have lunch at Kamishiro-ya for the best soba in town! If you have extra time, I suggest adding an additional day here to relax and enjoy the town.
Tsuruga-Jo Castle – I loved visiting the Tsuruga-Jo Castle! It was built in 1384 and changed hands many times between the different rulers. It was destroyed after the Boshin War of 1868 but has been rebuilt as a concrete reconstruction in the 1960’s and renovation was completed in 2011. Inside you will learn about the history of the samurai’s and have 360 views of the city from the top of the castle.
Byakkotai, Sazae-do – Very unique architecture, it’s a double-helix wooden tower from the 19th century. There’s more to see than just this temple, there’s a memorial on the top of the hill with stunning views. This is the spot where the Byakkotai group of teenage boys that took part in the Boshin War committed suicide in 1868.
DAY 4 – IWAKI, FUKUSHIMA
We checked into Koito Ryokan which is an affordable accommodation in Iwaki, Fukushima.
Ouchi-juku village – A unique post town whose buildings served as shops, inns, and restaurants. Many of the buildings have been preserved before the Meiji restoration and is now a major tourist attraction. I purchased dango from a lovely owner who helped heated it up for me. It was delicious!
Lunch at Kitakata Ramen is the best!
Explore Otazuki Kura and visit Ohara Shuzo Brewery for sake tasting
DAY 5 – IWAKI, FUKUSHIMA
Aquamarine Fukushima – I always enjoy learning about sea animals and the Aquamarine in Fukushima has a lot of interesting fishes to see. The aquarium highlights the sea life in the Shiome Sea, guests can learn about the evolution of life in the sea, seas of the coral reefs and so much more. There’s also live viewing of feeding the sea lions.
Iwaki Lalamew market – Here you will walk around the fish market, you can pick out your own fish and cook it yourself for lunch!
Shiramizu Amida-do Temple – The Shiramizu Amida-do Temple a simple wooden temple surrounded by beautiful gardens and ponds built in 1160. It is currently one of the oldest standing structure in Japan. It’s beautiful in every season but during autumn it’s one of the best when the fall foliage starts to come to life.
DAY 6 – TOKYO
There is so much to see and do in Tokyo! Spend the day exploring the rest of Tokyo, or try the cute, weird, best places to eat in Tokyo. Some of my favorite places are Mister Donut for the mochi donut, Tsujiri for the best matcha in the world or the famous Tsukiji Market for the best sushi you will ever have!
Japan will always be one of my favorite countries to visit. There are so many more places to explore besides popular destinations like Tokyo, Kyoto or Osaka. Fukushima is definitely an area everyone should also visit for its rich culture, history, sake, food, and onsens!