Japan is one of the most exciting places! With a fascinating culture and history, this country has become one of the biggest tech hubs in the world! If you’re planning a trip there, buckle up because we’ve got lots to talk about!
The best place where to stay in Japan is Tokyo. The capital city is filled with never-ending skyscrapers and fabulous attractions.
But there are many more places for people who want to visit its temples or chill on the beaches, so in this post, you’ll find 10 more cities, like Nara, Hakone, Kyoto, and others which I categorized by interest so you can easily pick your favorite!
I’ve looked for hours for the best hotels in the country and found the best of the best options. However, I’ve got to mention that you’ll have to hurry and book in advance because they sell out super fast!
So let’s dive into it already!
- If you are in a hurry
- 1. Tokyo – where to stay in Japan for the first time
- 2. Nara – best place to stay in Japan for history lovers
- 3. Hakone – where to stay in Japan for the hot springs
- 4. Kyoto – best place to stay in Japan for culture
- 5. Kamakura – where to stay in Japan for budget travelers
- 6. Miyajima – prettiest place to stay in Japan
- 7. Hokkaido – where to stay in Japan for outdoor adventures
- 8. Osaka – where to stay in Japan for families
- 9. Wakayama – best place to stay in Japan for relaxation
- 10. Yokohama – where to stay in Japan for shopping
- 11. Okinawa – best place to stay in Japan for beach lovers
- FAQs about hotels in Japan
If you are in a hurry
Who’s ready to make their move now and book a hotel where to stay in Japan? If that’s you, then check out the list below and pick your favorite place in Tokyo:
Best luxury hotel
Onyado Nono Asakusa
Best value for money
Best affordable accommodation in the center
An Airbnb with amazing reviews
We’ve got many places to see today but below you’ll find a map that we’ll help you visualize all the best places where to stay in Japan:
1. Tokyo – where to stay in Japan for the first time
There’s no doubt that Tokyo will steal your heart the minute you step foot out of the airport!
This capital city is huge, and it’s the perfect place for anyone who wants to experience Japan’s futuristic side! Oh yes, you’ll definitely feel like you’ve time-traveled into the future once you arrive and see the skyscrapers.
You’ll find many cool places to stay in Tokyo, and all the different districts have their charm! But I’d recommend Shinjuku, especially if you’re visiting the city for the first time.
Shinjuku is worth all the money as it offers easy access to the other areas and you’ll be just a short walk away from all the attractions! But of course, there are many other places to suit even the pickiest travelers.
Your list of things to do in Tokyo will never end, and I’m sure you’ll want to squeeze in as many attractions as possible! This city is an oasis of unique temples, skyscrapers, and busy streets with numerous shopping sites.
Don’t forget that Tokyo is one of the most touristic cities in the world, so do yourself a favor and book your accommodation in advance. Plus, if you book earlier than most travelers, you’ll get to find rooms in the coolest hotels in Tokyo!
With a great location, just a few minutes’ walk away from a subway station and the attractions, this hotel offers spacious rooms with a simple yet chic decor and great city views. Guests will have access to 13 restaurants, an indoor pool, and many on-site shops.
Other accommodation options in Tokyo
Featuring authentic decor, this hotel has hot springs baths, a restaurant, and family rooms
An affordable place to stay in Tokyo that has modern rooms with city views, a restaurant, and shared lounge
Private apartment with all the facilities you need including a kitchen, free wifi and a balcony
Things to do in Tokyo
- Admire the unique Sensō-ji temple
- Climb up the Tokyo Skytree tower
- Enjoy the tranquility at Meiji Jingu shrine
- Buy souvenirs from Ameyoko Shopping Street
- Explore the city at night
- Snap a picture of the Tokyo Tower
- Go on a tour of the Imperial Palace
- Visit the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation
2. Nara – best place to stay in Japan for history lovers
Japan has a rich past and the numerous temples, gardens, and palaces show that very well! If you’re hoping to learn as much as possible about Japanese culture and history during this trip, then I’d recommend visiting Nara (or maybe Kyoto too, which I’ll talk about in section #4)
As one of the best places to stay in Japan, Nara is very different from busy Tokyo. Instead of skyscrapers, you’ll see many old temples (some dating back to 1000 years ago), deer parks, and museums.
Most of the temples in Nara are included in the UNESCO World Heritage list!
Yep, this place is surely more tranquil, and it’s surrounded by mountains and hills, so you can enjoy long walks in nature and make some new deer friends in the parks (who, by the way, are super friendly and sometimes they even eat out of your hand)!
A beautiful ryokan (that also receives some deer as guests) is set in the Kasugayama Primeval Forest, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Each room offers forest views, and it has traditional Japanese decor with tatami floors!
Other accommodation options in Nara
This hotel is set near the train station and it offers family rooms with free wifi and breakfast
Guests will love this hotel which has temple views, Japanese-style rooms, and a terrace
Perfect for nature lovers, this place comes with a kitchen, a garden and free parking space
Things to do in Nara
- See the iconic Buddha statue at Tōdai-ji temple
- Play with the cute deer in Nara Park
- Enjoy the views at Mount Wakakusa
- Admire the unique sculptures at Nara National Museum
- Visit Kasuga-taisha, a 1000-year-old temple
- Explore the Japanese garden at Neiraku Museum of Art
- Check out Hōryū-ji, the world’s oldest wooden building
3. Hakone – where to stay in Japan for the hot springs
Let’s move a bit further west from Tokyo and travel to one of the most unique places in Japan: beautiful Hakone!
Although I like big cities that have an urban atmosphere, I’m more into places like Hakone that offer sites in nature. If you feel the same, then let’s discover the best places to stay in Hakone together!
Made up of a few small little towns, Hakone is famous for its natural hot springs and ryokan hotels (a type of Japanese inn), which I highly recommend booking for your trip.
Perfect for anyone who wants to discover Japan’s natural side and hike around the famous Mount Fuji, Hakone will surely become your absolute favorite place in Japan!
The city is home to many iconic places like the famous Lake Ashi and in Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park, a fun place where you can see Mount Fuji, the Izu Islands, and the Fuji Five Lakes.
Set in the midst of bamboo trees and hills, this Sukiya-style Ryokan offers incredible outdoor hot springs and great views of Mount Fuji! You’ll love your Japanese-style rooms that have tatami-mat flooring. So what are you waiting for? Grab some breakfast in the morning and head out to explore Hakone!
Other accommodation options in Hakone
Decorated with wooden furnishings, this hotel offers private rooms with a balcony and an outdoor fireplace
Super well-equipped place in Hakone that comes with family rooms with coffee makers and free parking
Tucked away between the trees, this private villa has lots of space, games and a natural hot spring bath
Things to do in Hakone
- Enjoy the hot spring baths at Gora Karaku Spa
- Catch a sunset in the Owakudani volcanic valley
- Go on a boat tour on Lake Ashi in Japan
- Explore the Fuji Hakone Izu National Park
- Admire the views of Mount Fuji from the Hakone Ropeway cable car
4. Kyoto – best place to stay in Japan for culture
If you want to dive deep into Japanese culture, then visiting Kyoto is a must!
The spiritual capital of the country is one of the most incredible places you’ll ever see! Get ready to remain in awe of the colorful temples surrounded by mountains, bamboo forests, and zen gardens.
Oh yes, Kyoto is no ordinary place, and you’ll surely never forget your trip here!
You’ll find many amazing areas to stay in Kyoto, and if you want to have easy access to the train station and the other neighborhoods then I’d recommend Downtown, where you’ll find a mix of modern and old Kyoto, restaurants, and bars.
However, there are more fantastic areas, like Southern Higashiyama, where you can actually see real geishas walking down the streets of the Old Town, just like in the famous movie Memoirs of a Geisha.
Wherever you stay, remember that Kyoto’s areas are best explored on foot. That way, you can enjoy all the architectural wonders and styles of houses!
Featuring contemporary decor mixed with some authentic Japanese elements, this fabulous hotel has a spa, a fitness center, and a bar. The perfect place to relax after a long day of exploring Japanese culture!
Other accommodation options in Kyoto
Set within walking distance from the train station, this hotel offers great rooms with mountain views
A chic-industrial hotel that has family rooms with a private bathroom, a restaurant, and free wifi
Guests will love this traditional Japanese townhouse that has an outdoor patio with a bathtub
Things to do in Kyoto
- Take lots of pics at Fushimi Inari Taisha shrine
- Visit the golden Kinkaku-ji temple
- Go for a walk in the zen garden at Ryōan-ji
- Indulge in the Japanese cuisine at Nishiki Market
- Admire the views near the Kiyomizu-dera temple
- Explore the picturesque Bamboo Forest
- Learn new things about history at Nijō Castle
5. Kamakura – where to stay in Japan for budget travelers
Traveling to a place like Japan can be expensive, especially if you’re planning to visit more than 1 city. But I’m here to help save money when planning this trip, and the first step is to pick the right town!
Kamakura is a fantastic coastal town where to stay in Japan, just 1 hour away from Tokyo by train. And guess what, it’s so affordable to come here, plus its proximity to the capital makes it a great place if you want to take day trips there.
With an abundance of temples, gardens, and, oh yes, beaches, Kamakura is a top site for anyone who wants to explore the country at a much slower pace and relax on this holiday.
Some of the most unique places to visit here are the Kōtoku-in temple (which is home to a giant Buddha statue) and the Hokokuji Temple, which has a stunning bamboo garden.
Set near the beach, this simply-decorated holiday home has all the facilities guests need, including a kitchen, free private parking, and a private bathroom. The perfect place to enjoy a little luxury for more affordable prices.
Other accommodation options in Kamakura
Feel at home in this homie apartment that comes with a kitchen, a garden, and mountain views
A super affordable and comfortable place where guests have a shared bathroom and free wifi
Set just a few minutes walk away from the beach, this place has 2 spacious rooms and a kitchen
Things to do in Kamakura
- See the giant Buddha Statue at Kōtoku-in
- Admire the views of Mount Fuji at Zushi Beach
- Enjoy some tranquility at Meigetsu-in Temple
- Get lost in the bamboo garden at Hokokuji Temple
- Go for a swim at Kamakura Yuigahama Beach
6. Miyajima – prettiest place to stay in Japan
I think we can all agree that no matter where you go in Japan, you’ll stumble across a super unique place, that’s either so new and futuristic or old and rich in legends and fables.
We’ve talked about a few, but we’ve got many more sites to see, so let’s continue our trip and head over to Miyajima, a stunning island that is also known as Itsukushima, that’s set off the coast of Hiroshima.
This is one of the most unique places in Japan, mainly because it offers so much! From incredible beaches, to temples, aquariums, and museums. There’s never a dull moment here!
Miyajima means “shrine island” in Japanese, and this place is often referred to as the Island of the Gods!
This town is also home to a famous temple called Itsukushima Shinto Shrine with a cool tori gate (the traditional reddish-orange Japanese gate) set on the water, which looks as if it’s floating!
Relax in the outdoor springs bath at this superb authentic ryokan that’s surrounded by trees! Each room at the hotel has traditional tatami floors and futon bedding. Enjoy a nice massage after your flight and a delicious meal at the restaurant.
Other accommodation options in Miyajima
Set just a short walk away from the ferry terminal, this ryokan has family rooms with tatami floors
With a combination of old and new decor, this place offers guests a shared kitchen and a garden
The minimalistic designed apartment that has lots of space, a balcony, and a kitchen
Things to do in Miyajima
- Take the cable car to Mount Misen
- Play with the deers at Omoto Park
- Go for a walk in the scenic Momijidani Park
- Enjoy the sun on Tsutsumigaura Playa
- See the whales at Miyajima Public Aquarium
- Catch a sunset at the famous Itsukushima Shrine
7. Hokkaido – where to stay in Japan for outdoor adventures
Looking for a place in Japan where you can hike in the morning, ski whenever you like, and spot cute animals in their natural habitat?
I’ve got just the place for you! Hokkaido region is set in the northernmost of the Japanese islands, and it’s such a beautiful place filled with volcanos, national parks, and flower fields!
Trust me, you’ll never want to leave this island after coming here. It’s one of the best places to visit in the country.
Finding great hotels in Hokkaido is easy. The hard part is deciding where to stay since there are so many amazing sites here, but don’t worry I’ve managed to find some great hotels that are close to different attractions so you can decide quickly.
Some iconic sites that you shouldn’t miss here are the Daisetsuzan National Park which is filled with many hiking trails, wildlife and sights of Mount Asahi, the tallest mountain on the island and Asahiyama Zoo, where you can see the cutest penguins!
Indulge in all the delicious food at this stunning ryokan hotel that has rooms with large windows overlooking the beautiful scenery! Guests can relax in the hot spring baths wherever they like and also rent bikes from the hotel to explore around!
Other accommodation options in Hokkaido
This hotel is set within walking distance of the subway and it has family rooms and free wifi
A modern place to stay in Japan near the university, that has a restaurant on-site, a bar, and lockers
Enjoy your stay in Hokkaido in this well-equipped rustic house that has a kitchen and a balcony
Things to do in Hokkaido
- Spot the cute penguins at Asahiyama Zoo
- Take pictures of the flowers fields at Farm Tomita
- Go hiking in Daisetsuzan National Park
- Ski all day long at Furano ski resort
- Get close to the clouds at Unkai Terrace
- Enjoy the fresh water at Shirahige Waterfall
- See the bluest water at Shirogane Blue Pond
8. Osaka – where to stay in Japan for families
Adventure, delicious food, and incredible architecture! Osaka is a place that you shouldn’t miss, especially if you’re coming with the kids! Why?
Well, Osaka is home to Universal Studios Japan theme parks! Oh yes, expect unlimited fun for you and the kids at one of the most famous amusement parks in the world!
There are many amazing areas to stay in Osaka, and all the different districts have something special about them! I’d recommend Osaka Bay if you’re coming with your family. However, if you don’t mind the noise and want to be closer to the center, then you could go for Umeda.
Osaka is super diverse, and it offers something for each type of traveler, especially for foodies! Yep, this city is famous for its yummy street food and restaurants, so make sure you try all the Japanese specialties while you’re here.
This luxurious hotel offers the most fantastic city views and family rooms with a contemporary design and floor-to-ceiling windows. Indulge in all the yummy food and try all 4 restaurants on-site!
Other accommodation options in Osaka
Set nearby Universal Studios, this hotel has restaurants, family rooms, and shops on-site
Enjoy your stay in Japan at this modern hotel with a great location, a restaurant, and family rooms
Perfect for a family of 4, this apartment comes with a private patio, a kitchen and a working space
Things to do in Osaka
- Visit the beautiful Osaka Castle
- Take the kids to Universal Studios Japan
- Check out the restaurants in Dotonbori district
- Spend a fun day at Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan
- Eat delicious street food at Kuromon Ichiba Market
9. Wakayama – best place to stay in Japan for relaxation
If you don’t mind trading the busy streets of Tokyo or Osaka (which is only 1h away) for something a bit more tranquil, then I think you’ll love the next city!
Wakayama is Japan’s hidden gem, and not many tourists come here which is great for those who aren’t big fans of crowds!
Famous for its castle, temples, and delicious food (you’ll eat the best ramen here), Wakayama is the kind of place where you can enjoy the local atmosphere to the fullest! Unlike Tokyo, Kyoto, and other big cities, this town is great if you want to walk around, relax and discover all its hidden gems!
There are many things to do in Wakayama and some of my favorites include drinking tea in the most peaceful gardens and visiting all the temples.
And if you’re craving a bit of action, just head over to Wakayama Marina City, a small island connected to the mainland by a bridge where you’ll find a super fun theme park!
Enjoy a quiet sunset in the infinity pool of this dreamy hotel that offers a sauna, and modern rooms with large windows overlooking the city! Simply perfect for a quiet luxury stay in a unique city!
Other accommodation options in Wakayama
Enjoy a hot spring bath at night at this hotel that offers family rooms, breakfast, and free wifi
This affordable city hotel offers a spacious room with a private bathroom, and breakfast
A waterfront apartment perfect for 4 or 5 guests, that has a kitchen, free wifi and an elevator
Things to do in Wakayama
- Visit the beautiful Wakayama Castle
- Admire the cherry blossoms at Kimiidera Temple
- Have fun at Wakayama Marina City
- Check out The Museum of Modern Art
- Go for a walk in Yosui-en Garden
10. Yokohama – where to stay in Japan for shopping
As Japan’s second-largest city, Yokohama offers many incredible attractions, fantastic restaurants, and shopping stores (their Chinatown is huge)!
If you’re looking for a whole experience of Japan, then I think you should definitely consider Yokohama as it has a little bit of everything, including a huge stadium, which is the biggest one in the country, and great hotels!
In 2019 they held the final match of the Rugby World Cup in Yokohama at their International Stadium!
There are many things to do and see in this city, and some of them are super quirky and family-friendly! Like the Cup Noodles Museum, where you can learn about the inventor of cup noodles, or the Cosmoworld amusement park!
But as I already mentioned, I think people who like to shop will enjoy their time here to the fullest. There are lots of stores and as I mentioned they have a big Chinatown where you can get most of your souvenirs!
Stylish rooms with ceiling-to-floor windows overlooking the city and a balcony! This Japan hotel is one of the best places in Yokohama and it offers a pool, a spa center and a restaurant for you to enjoy during your stay!
Other accommodation options in Yokohama
A 52-floor hotel with great city views from its spacious room which has large windows and comfy beds
This beautifully-decorated guest house offers a shared lounge, a garden, and beach access
Well-equipped Chinatown apartment with a kitchenette, a balcony and free wifi
Things to do in Yokohama
- Explore the scenic Sankeien Garden
- Shop until you drop in Yokohama Chinatown
- Visit the Cup Noodles Museum
- Explore Yokohama at night
- Enjoy your time at Yokohama Cosmoworld
- Admire the views from The Sky Garden
- Take the kids to the Yokohama Zoological Gardens
11. Okinawa – best place to stay in Japan for beach lovers
As tourists, I guess we don’t think of Japan as a beach holiday destination. Well, there are such places in the country and it would be a shame not to visit them since they look pretty spectacular!
Okinawa is a group of 150 remote islands located south of the main Japan archipelago in the East China Sea. Only 47 of them are inhabited, and the most popular one is Okinawa Island.
This is one of the best places to visit in Japan as it has the perfect warm weather all year round, jungles to explore, mangroves, and the bluest water!
You’ll find there are endless unique places to stay in Okinawa, from bustling cities to old, beautiful towns.
Plus numerous things to do for all groups ages and interests. Whether you want to chill on the beach, go partying in the club at night, or enjoy your family time in an amusement park, Okinawa is ready to offer that and more (trust me, you’ll fall in love with Japan after coming here)!
Set right on the beach, this fabulous hotel offers amazing sea views, a relaxing setting, and outdoor firepits! Go for a swim in one of the 3 swimming pools and continue your day with a long spa sesh!
Other accommodation options in Okinawa
Elegantly-designed hotel with an outdoor pool, a restaurant a spa center, and family rooms
Simple yet well-equipped aparthotel for your stay in Japan that offers a kitchenette and a hot tub
This stunning wooden-furnished place is near the ocean and it has a pool and a patio
Things to do in Okinawa
- Visit the beautiful Shurijo Castle
- Go snorkeling in the Blue Cave
- Relax on Zanpa Beach
- Take the kids to the American Village theme park
- Enjoy the views at Cape Manzamo
- Spot some whale sharks at Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium
|🌆 Top city in Japan:||Tokyo|
|👪 Best place for families:||Osaka|
|🏰 Most historical area:||Nara|
|😋 Best hot springs:||Hakone|
|🗻 Unique attraction||Mount Fuji|
|🏖️ Top beaches:||Okinawa|
|🍜 Must-try food:||Ramen|
|🍷 Dinner for 2 with wine:||$40|
|💰 Avg hotel price:||$250|
|🧳 Cost of traveling:||Medium|
FAQs about hotels in Japan
🌆 Where is the best city to stay in Japan?
Tokyo is one of the best places to stay in Japan! The capital city is huge and it offers countless attractions and the best hotels like the Imperial Hotel.
🤔 Should I stay in Kyoto or Tokyo?
👪 What is a better place to stay for families between Tokyo vs Osaka?
Tokyo is ideal for families with its diverse attractions, extensive public transportation, and kid-friendly activities, making it a top choice for family vacations.
📅 How many days do you need in Japan?
I think if you spend between 7 to 14 days in Japan, that will give you enough time to visit the country’s main attractions and cities.
A pretty iconic country, right? Well, now that you’ve seen all these cities, which one do you think you’d prefer? I wanna hear all about it, so make sure you leave me a comment below!
Until you decide, let’s quickly recap what we’ve talked about today. This post has the best places where to stay in Japan, categorized by interest plus a list of hotels for each.
I know that’s a lot of information to take in so in case you’re looking for a bit of extra inspiration, here are my top 2 favorite hotels, both located in Tokyo:
- Imperial Hotel – This is one of the best places in the capital city, and it has an indoor pool with fabulous city views, a spa center, and a restaurant
- Onyado Nono Asakusa – A beautiful hotel in Tokyo where you can relax in their natural hot spring day and night and in their sauna
As I mentioned, these hotels are some of the top places where to stay in Japan, so make sure you book yours fast because I’m certain they’ll disappear super quickly!
It was a long journey but we’ve finished our virtual trip to Japan! You’ve got all the info you need in this post, but if I’ve missed anything just leave me a comment below and I’ll answer as quickly as I can!
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