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Travel to Japan: The underrated places you need to visit on your trip

Are you in the midst of writing the itinerary for your next getaway when it’s safe to travel again? Or simply dreaming of places that aren’t your bedroom? Either way, we’ve got you covered. Here are some of the coolest spots in Japan you might not find on your average travel site.

Iya Valley

Situated in Tokushima Prefecture, Japan, Iya Valley is a simply breathtaking region adorned with picturesque thatched roof farmhouses & vine bridges. Because of its remote nature, Iya Valley used to be a popular retreat for refugees & warriors. According to rumors, in the 12th century, members of the Taira clan sought refuge in Iya Valley after losing the Genpei War. History buffs: you don’t wanna skip this destination!

Although you probably won’t see Japanese warriors in Iya Valley in 2021, the place is popular because it is one of the only places in the country that still resembles old world Japan.

Hikone Castle

Located in the Hikone, the Hikone Castle is the most historically significant building in the Shiga Prefecture. Only twelve castles in all of Japan maintain their original structure, and are resultantly popular tourist attractions

The castle was built in 1604 at the instruction of Ii Nakotsu, the son of a Japanese feudal lord. During the Meiji era, almost 200 years later, many castles were taken down. And were only saved by a specific request from the emperor. Luckily, the emperor chose to keep Hikone Castle intact, and visitors can see it in all of its glory today.

Tottori Sand Dunes

People don’t often associate Japan with sand dunes, but the country actually boasts one of the greatest the world has to offer. The Tottori Sand Dunes are located near the city of Tottori in the Tottori Prefecture. 

The dunes originated when sediment deposits were carried from the Chūgoku Mountains by the Sendai River into the Sea of Japan. Currents subsequently brought the sand onto the shore, and the wind formed them into dune shapes. The dunes themselves have now existed in Japan for over 100,000 years, so are a historic artifact if ever we heard of one. Lovers of history and geography alike: the dunes are a perfect destination.

Hitachinaka Kaihin Park

Looking to take in some beautiful nature during your trip to Japan? We’ve got you covered. When you visit Hitachinaka Kaihin Park, located in the city of Hitachinaka, you will be privy to a whopping 190 hectares of gorgeous flowers.

The park contains around 4.5 million baby blue-eyes flowers, a million daffodils, 170 varieties of tulips, and many others. And, if you’re not a huge flower person, not to worry! The park also has lengthy cycling trains and an amusement park. Hitachinaka Kaihin Park really has something for everyone!

Ushiku Daibutsu

Located in Ushiku, in Ibaraki Prefecture, you’ll find one of the most stunning statues in Japan. The statue, completed in 1993, depicts Amitabh Buddha in all his glory. It also held the record for the world’s tallest statue from 1993-2008. If you visit the Ushiku Daibutsu, you’ll have to get in an elevator to even view the Buddha. It’s quite a sight to see and shouldn’t be missed!


Yamadera translates to “mountain temple,” and it lives up to its name. Located in the mountains north of Yamagata, the temple stands on top of a mountain with views of the valley & mountains below. Make sure to visit Yamadera for some once-in-a-lifetime scenery.

Whether you know you’re going to be travelling once the COVID situation is under control (whenever that may be . . . ) of it you’re only just dreaming of it, it’s safe to say that Japan is one of the best spots possible. So start your itinerary now – and start with the stunning places on this list!

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